SAN ANTONIO – The San Antonio Spurs suffered a rare home loss earlier this week when they were outplayed by Utah and now they attempt to gain a measure of revenge when they visit the Jazz on Friday.
Utah lost 10 straight games in San Antonio before offseason acquisition George Hill scored 22 points to lead the Jazz to a 106-91 victory over the Spurs on Tuesday.
San Antonio hasn’t played since the lackluster defeat, a setback that was mighty discouraging to All-Star forward Kawhi Leonard.
"Every loss is disappointing to me," Leonard told reporters. "Just disappointed in our defensive effort. Our energy wasn't there in the first quarter. They were knocking down shots in the fourth quarter. They scored 33 in the fourth and that's not good either."
Hill had another big game for the Jazz on Wednesday, when he scored 25 points in a 97-81 home victory over the Dallas Mavericks.
"I'm just happy we're winning, I don't care about the numbers," Hill said afterward. "Just doing what it takes to try to win a game. I'm glad my teammates have confidence in me to control the tempo out there and try to make plays."
TV: 8 p.m. CT, FSN Southwest (San Antonio)
ABOUT THE SPURS (4-1): San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich was even more dismayed with the poor effort against Utah than Leonard.
“I thought we started out pretty unaggressively, for whatever reason,” Popovich told reporters. “They shot several uncontested shots. Overall, they were aggressive the entire 48 minutes. We were in and out in that regard.”
The Jazz knocked down 15 3-pointers – matching the most an opponent has ever made during a Spurs’ home game.
ABOUT THE JAZZ (3-2): Point guard was a huge weakness for Utah last season, so Hill was acquired from the Indiana Pacers to shore up the position and he has scored 18 or more points in each game while averaging 21.4.
"Some of the things that he's doing, you were hopeful that he would do," Jazz coach Quin Snyder told reporters. "But you're equally pleased that he's doing them. He's made big shots at crucial times. What I've seen is his willingness to (say), ‘Where do you need me? Do you need me to score? Do you need me to get a stop? Do you want me to lead?'”
Shooting guard Rodney Hood scored 22 points in the victory over the Mavericks – his second-best effort of the season.
1. Leonard made five 3-pointers while scoring 30 points on Tuesday and is averaging 28.4 points.
2. 2. Utah PF Derrick Favors (knee) has just four rebounds over the past two games as he plays himself into shape.
3. 3. San Antonio PG Tony Parker (knee) will sit out the contest.