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Utah Jazz visit Dallas in search of missing offense

Published February 6, 2014 5:33 pm

Notes • Corbin: Team must "find a way to get some easy baskets."
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As the All-Star break approaches, the Jazz's offense has disappeared.

Utah takes a three-game losing streak to Dallas on Friday night, when it plays the high-scoring Mavericks.

The Jazz haven't scored more than 90 points in consecutive defeats to Golden State, the L.A. Clippers and Toronto.

In their last five defeats, Utah averages only 85 points.

Asked why his team is struggling to score, coach Tyrone Corbin said, "Legs, legs. I mean, we've been shooting a lot of jump shots and they're short.

"It's part of where we are this time of year, but we have to find a way to get some easy baskets — attack the rim a little more. We're settling for a lot of jump shots."

In the losses to the Clippers (112-87) and Toronto (94-79), the Jazz are 13 for 41 on 3-point shots.

What's the answer?

"Just staying with it," said point guard Trey Burke. "Staying confident in everything we do. Trust the offense. Play within the offense. As long as we do that and execute, we'll be fine."

Mavs on a hot streak

The Jazz picked the wrong time to play Dallas.

The Mavericks have won four of their last five games, including three in a row. They come off an impressive 110-96 victory at Memphis on Wednesday night.

At 29-21, Dallas is eighth in the Western Conference, but the Mavs are only one-half game behind Phoenix and Golden State.

They trail No. 5 Houston by only four games.

"They are talking about moving up and not settling for where they are," Corbin said. "… They are a veteran team that knows the big picture and what they are playing for. They know how to get themselves ready for this stretch of the year — the last push of the season."

Once again, All-Star Dirk Nowitzki leads Dallas.

Despite the fact that he'll turn 36 in June, he averages 22 points and 6.2 rebounds. He has played in 48 of the Mavericks' first 50 games.

"He's Dirk," Corbin said. "He's back on one of his runs. His team is trying to find themselves."

Said Burke: "They are a well-rounded team. They have Dirk Nowitzki as their primary scorer and, obviously we have to stop him. But they have a lot of guys around him, too. … We have to come out and throw the first punch. We have to match their intensity."

Burke honored again

Burke has been named the Rookie of the Month in the Western Conference for January.

He was also earned the award in December, making him the first player in Jazz history to be named twice in one season.

"It's an honor," Burke said. "It means a lot. I want to thank my teammates and the coaching staff. They trust me with the ball and allow me to make decisions on the court. I just have to continue to get better."

Big returns?

Starting center Derrick Favors has missed five of the last seven games because of a hip injury suffered Jan. 17 at Detroit.

Backup forward Jeremy Evans has been sidelined for two games because of a bruised elbow and tailbone.

Favors and Evans practiced Wednesday and Thursday, however, and could return against Dallas.

Before the Jazz's practice, Corbin said, "Hopefully they'll respond today and be ready to go [Friday]."






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