With a fully healthy line-up for perhaps the first time this season, the Utah Jazz came out firing against the Sacramento Kings. From start to finish, Utah ripped the nets from all over the floor, coasting to an impressive 122-101 road victory.
Less than a week after the Kings defeated the Jazz at EnergySolutions Arena, it was Utah’s turn to get some payback. From the get-go, Utah’s offense flowed crisply and smoothly and it did enough defensively to fluster the short-handed Sacramento squad. As a result, the Jazz were never threatened from the second quarter on.
Utah saw Derrick Favors and Marvin Williams return from injury, while the Kings were without the recently acquired trio of Rudy Gay, Aaron Gray and Quincy Acy. The Jazz improved to 5-19 and 2-10 on the road.
Offensive outpouring: It simply was the most potent offensive night of the season for the Jazz. The execution was excellent throughout the game, only trailing off a touch in the late fourth quarter garbage time. All night long, Utah was making the correct basketball plays. The team was making the extra pass, setting itself up for a bevy of great looks at the basket. These were very welcome developments for a team that has struggled scoring all season.
Here’s a sampling of how honed in the offense was Wednesday:
• Utah hit 48 of 89 from the floor (53.9 percent). The team actually shot better from beyond the arc, as it connected on 13 of 23 3-point attempts (56.5 percent). Richard Jefferson, Alec Burks and Brandon Rush each accounted for three treys.
• The Jazz assisted on 35 of 48 made field goals, giving them an assisted field goal mark of 72.9 percent. Nine different players registered two or more assists.
• With only six turnovers, Utah collectively had a 5.83 assist-to-turnover ratio.
• Strangely enough, Sacramento outscored the Jazz in the paint (54-46) and in fast-break points (14-9). It was simply the Jazz’s perimeter prowess that overpowered the Kings.
• Nine Utah players scored between eight and 20 points. The five reserves who played rotation minutes combined to shoot 24 of 35 from the field (68.6 percent).
This and that:
• Former Brigham Young University star Jimmer Fredette had perhaps his best outing of the young season, scoring 11 points in just 12 minutes off the bench.
• In his past four outings, Burks is averaging 18 points a game while shooting 54 percent from the floor, 62.5 percent on 3-pointers and 92.9 percent from the free-throw line.
• Sacramento only had 13 assists and two steals for the evening.
• Burke had 11 points and a career-high nine assists despite finding himself in foul trouble most of the night. Favors and Enes Kanter also had five fouls trying to defend Kings big man DeMarcus Cousins.
• Cousins, guard Isaiah Thomas and Sacramento head coach Mike Malone each had technicals.
David Smith provides instant analysis for Deseret News' Utah Jazz coverage. He works for LDS Philanthropies and also writes for Salt City Hoops (ESPN's Jazz affiliate). He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at davidjsmith1232.
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