SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — The Utah Jazz were hoping they could "shock the world" with an upset of the top-seeded Spurs yet now acknowledge surviving the first-round Western Conference series would be to "rewrite history."
The Spurs are intent on closing out the series in Game 4 on Monday.
"We want to get it done," Spurs forward Tim Duncan said Sunday after a short practice. "Obviously we want to stay away from injuries, get as much rest as possible, stay as fresh as possible. All of that equals trying to get the series done as quickly as possible."
Jazz center Al Jefferson won't concede the game but says the Spurs — winners of 13 straight now — are the best team in the playoffs.
"I just think we're playing against a team that is at its peak," said Jefferson, who has struggled to defend the Spurs' pick-and-roll and its depth. "I don't see nobody beating them. We ain't given up trying. But this is a great team."
Utah has lost the first three games by 58 points combined and star sixth-man Manu Ginobili hasn't even made a 3-pointer.
As the Jazz look for answers, coach Tyrone Corbin said he may consider giving second-year pro Derrick Favors a start but wouldn't announce any decision until Monday.
The 6-10 Favors has 31 points, 28 rebounds and four blocks in three games and saw his most extensive action Saturday.
Corbin played Favors 32 minutes in Saturday's 102-90 loss but said he deserves even more time because his athleticism, competitive nature and desire are making an impact.
"His curve for learning is shortening," Corbin said. "He's learning things on the fly. He wants to get better every night he steps on the floor. ... Even though we haven't had the success, he's demonstrated he has that other level in him."
Corbin said it's also obvious Favors is ticked after losing.
"I think all of our guys feel bad about losing, just some guys you see it a little more in their faces and demeanor," Corbin said. "He'll learn. He'll get better because there's a bad taste in his mouth, and he don't like it."
Corbin also had praise for rookies Enes Kanter and Alec Burks, and wished he had played Burks more after he contributed 11 points and two rebounds in 15 minutes, and was 3 of 4 from the free-throw line.
While the young players are relishing every minute, Jazz veteran Paul Millsap is finding the series particularly painful.
He has been the heart and soul of the team but has struggled to find his shot in the playoffs.
Continue reading this story on the...