Warriors Get the Blues From the Jazz, Lose 110-100

SALT LAKE CITY — If they hadn’t been stewing on consecutive losses for the first time in more than a month, everyone in the Warriors’ locker room would have started cracking up while Andrew Bogut was talking after Friday’s 110-100 loss to Utah.

“We’ll bounce back and be OK. There aren’t alarm bells, but it’s a wake-up call for us,” the Warriors’ center said just as Andre Iguodala’s phone started sounding like a tornado horn. “I think we kind of need it at this point of the season.”

The Warriors (36-8) lost consecutive games for the first time since Dec. 23 and 25 in Los Angeles, and their 22-game winning streak with Bogut in the lineup was halted. They dropped to 25-2 when starting a lineup of Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Harrison Barnes, Draymond Green and Bogut, and they had stretches of looking confused on defense and scrambling on offense against the Jazz (17-30).

For the third straight game, the Warriors made uncharacteristic mistakes on defense, and for the second straight game, they got destroyed on the boards. With Utah scoring 110 points, including 20 second-chance points, and winning the rebounding battle 55-41, the Warriors have given up an average of 111.3 points during their past three games and are minus-27 in rebounding during the past two.

“It’s hard to win a game in the NBA. Every game is hard to win,” Warriors head coach Steve Kerr said. “The only way you can win is if you bring the necessary energy and focus, and we didn’t have enough life to win a game on the road against a hungry, young team that’s playing a lot better. They took it to us.”

The Warriors still lead Memphis atop the Western Conference by three games and the Clippers atop the Pacific Division by 5½ games. But this is not the way they wanted to start a stretch that has 12 of 15 games on the road, especially after winning the first two games of the season series with Utah by 24 points.

Utah was led by Gordon Hayward, who had 26 points, a career-high 15 rebounds and six assists. Trevor Booker came off the bench to score a season-high 17 points, and big men Derrick Favors and Rudy Gobert combined for 25 points, 14 rebounds and five blocked shots.
Enes Kanter, who told reporters at the morning shootaround that Bogut is “nothing special,” had five points and 10 rebounds. Bogut, returning to the lineup after missing Tuesday’s overtime loss with an illness, was limited to four points, four rebounds and no blocked shots in 23 minutes.

“I played horribly today,” Bogut said. “This was the worst game I’ve played all year. I didn’t have energy, didn’t feel good rhythm and just couldn’t get it going. … Even defensively, I was terrible. I couldn’t help the team. They kicked my ass tonight.”
The Warriors did get 32 points, seven rebounds and six assists from Stephen Curry, who scored 15 during a third-quarter comeback attempt that never gained much steam. Curry was 5-of-11 from three-point range, and the rest of the team was 3-of-16 from distance as Utah led wire to wire and was up by as many as 18 points.

Leandro Barbosa came off the bench to score 15 points in 13 minutes, Klay Thompson’s 22-game streak with at least one three-pointer was snapped on a 12-point night, and the Warriors’ starting forwards combined for 11 points, six rebounds and one assist.
“We’ve got to get our edge back,” Kerr said. “… They just kicked our butts.”

Bogut did look bad, and he is the teams vital piece if they want to win the West and for a title hope.

Written by Joey Sinatra

Joey Sinatra

Joey Sinatra is a co-founder of WickedJumpShot.com Joey is a boxing and basketball journalist who attends USI as a post graduate. Joey grew up in the New Rochelle Area of the greater New York City area, and is a cousin of the famous singer, Frank Sinatra. Joey also writes for the Boxing Globe.