(Sports Network) - If the Utah Jazz have any intentions on making a run to the
playoffs, they have to start playing better on the road.
Mired in a seven-game road losing streak, the chances of Utah improving its
road woes Friday night are slim in a matchup with the San Antonio Spurs.
The Jazz opened a three-game tour of Texas with Wednesday's 90-83 loss against
the Houston Rockets as Gordon Hayward scored 27 points and Al Jefferson added
18 points and 11 rebounds in defeat. Utah, which has dropped 10 of 13 games
overall and is 1 1/2 games behind the Los Angeles Lakers for the eighth and
final playoff berth in the West.
"We're still in the fight," said Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin. "We're still alive.
We've slid and this is a tough loss for us but we're still in the fight and
we'll approach every game trying to contain and compete to win the ball game
and we'll see where that goes."
Utah trailed by as many as 26 points and was able to trim the deficit to 87-79
late in the game. However, the Rockets were too much and also needed to boost
its postseason status.
The Jazz are 10-25 away from Salt Lake City and will wrap up the Lone Star
State sojourn Sunday at Dallas.
San Antonio will close out a four-game homestand before heading to Houston and
has won four in a row in the Alamo City.
The Spurs improved to 3-0 on the homestand with Wednesday's 104-93 victory
over the Golden State Warriors, who have lost 29 in a row at San Antonio. Tim
Duncan had 25 points, 13 rebounds and six assists, while Tiago Splitter added
17 points and seven boards for the Spurs, who are 6-2 since starting point
guard Tony Parker went down with a left ankle sprain.
Manu Ginobili had 16 points and seven assists off the bench in the win.
"Timmy has his rhythm back," Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. "He's in great
shape and down the stretch we went through him. Manu and Timmy really decided
to do that on their own and they did a great job of it."
San Antonio is 29-4 at home and leads the Western Conference by 2 1/2 games
over the Oklahoma City Thunder. The Spurs are also closing in on another
Southwest Division title. After visiting the Rockets on Sunday, the Spurs, who
are 7-2 in the last nine games overall, will return home for three tough games
versus the Nuggets, Clippers and Heat.
The Spurs and Jazz have split two meetings this season with each team winning
as the host. San Antonio has still won seven of the past nine contests with
Utah, which has lost four straight and 24 of its last 26 in the Alamo City.
The Sports Network