Extra observations from a third-time’s-the-charm 96-87 win over the Lakers:
POINT 1: Derrick Favors and Enes Kanter are coming along nicely, and they put their imprint on this win. They were on the court, making a big impression during the decisive 16-1 beginning of the fourth quarter.
Favors had four points and six rebounds in the final period, and the two combined for 22 points and 14 rebounds.
Combine that with the combined 34 points and 26 rebounds Utah got from Paul Millsap and Al Jefferson, and that’s — gimme a sec to do the math — a whole lot of points and rebounds from Utah’s bigs, young and old(er).
“Enes and Derrick did a great job on the bigs inside to start and Al and Paul finished it off,” Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin said. “It was just one play after another and it just led to another exciting play for us.”
POINT 2: Defensively, the Jazz really excelled in this one. For starters, NBA-leading scorer Kobe Bryant didn’t go off for 40 points, so that was nice. He took about half as many shots (16 vs. 31) as he did the last time the Lakers were in town and finished with 26 points (11-for-12 from the free-throw line helped).
Kobe got the Jimmer treatment, too, receiving boos and cheers all night.
But Utah really put it together on the defensive end in the second half, holding the Lakers to just 38 points in 24 minutes. L.A. missed 26 of 36 shots (27.8 percent shooting), only had three assists compared to seven turnovers, and obviously got rattled by the Jazz’s physical play and the thousands of fans in EnergySolutions Arena who weren’t wearing that shade of yellow (What’s it called? Ah, yes: Bandwagon Yellow).
“You know, it doesn’t matter if our offense is going or not. We still need to get stops,” Millsap said. “We need to stop them from scoring even if we’re not scoring points. We did that (Saturday).”
POINT 3: Earl Watson gave Derrick Favors some grief over the dunk he made during Utah’s decisive 16-1 spurt to open the fourth, Watson stole the ball from (or mugged, depending which team you ask) Pau Gasol and then tossed the ball to Favors.
“Derrick Favors was wide open. I thought Favors was going to give me something spectacular, but he gave me an old-school double-dribble basket dunk,” Watson said, showing with his hands what an old-school double-dribble basket dunk looks like. “I was like, ‘C’mon man … I could’ve did that.”
Favors laughed when told that Watson was teasing him about his dunk.
“I could’ve did something, but it was a crucial game,” the 20-year-old said. “I didn’t want to do something and miss it, then coach get mad at me, take me out and now I’m in punishment, so I just went for an old-fashioned dunk.”
It looked like, well, imagine Watson making hand motions, that’s what.