Burke, Utah Jazz beat Memphis Grizzlies 89-79
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Trey Burke committed himself to being more professional during the offseason — better sleep, better workout regimen, better focus.
So far, so good.
Burke scored 24 points, including a career-high six 3-pointers, and the Utah Jazz held off the struggling Memphis Grizzlies for an 89-79 victory on Saturday night.
“My teammates found me and I was ready to shoot,” Burke said. “You hit a couple and you start feeling it. Start getting hot. ... It’s just a matter of reads for me. I try not to predetermine what I do before I get the ball.
“I just try to take an approach each and every day and stay focused in on that day — trying to get better. ... Not try to look forward. Not try to live in the past. Just zoning everything out and making sure I can get better.”
The Jazz improved to 4-2 for their best start since 2008-09.
Utah’s Gordon Hayward had his best game of the season, finishing with 18 points, six rebounds and four assists while shooting 6 for 10 from the field. Derrick Favors had 12 points, 16 rebounds and three steals.
The Jazz pulled away during a 30-19 second quarter.
“I got some easy ones, some easy looks, some open 3s, some transition dunks,” Hayward said, “and that, honestly, gets you going a little bit.”
Memphis (3-4) had its worst shooting night of the season against the No. 1 defense in the NBA, going 30 for 91 from the field. Mike Conley had 20 points and five assists while Marc Gasol finished with 13 points and 10 rebounds.
“It was a frustrating night for us,” Grizzlies coach Dave Joerger said. “We had 55 shots in the paint and we converted 19 of them. We didn’t shoot well from 3 and it just seemed like we didn’t get many shots to go down.”
Grizzlies: Memphis had 47 NBA seasons of experience in its starting lineup. Utah had 13. ... Memphis shot 38.1 percent from the field in the first half and had no fast-break points. ... F Brandan Wright left at the end of the first quarter with right knee soreness. ... Memphis made it a game late by outscoring the Jazz 22-12 in the fourth quarter.
Jazz: Utah entered ranked No. 24 in the league with 23.8 fouls per game. It committed 20 fouls against the Grizzlies. ... Favors was back to his normal minutes after flu-like symptoms kept him from the second half of Thursday’s game. ... Rudy Gobert blocked four shots.
Utah coach Quin Snyder didn’t want to call the veteran Grizzlies an early season litmus test for his young Jazz, but did acknowledge a team with its experience provides certain challenges. He wanted the Jazz to stay out of foul trouble against a physical team and compete against a team hungry to turn around a slow start.
“In that sense, it’s a test on a lot of little levels as well,” Snyder said.
Joerger wasn’t overly concerned with his team’s slow start. He said they’ve been here before in 2013-14 when the Grizzlies started 3-5, but finished with a 50-32 record and a playoff berth.
“We can be better,” Joerger said. “They’re sticking together. We knew coming in it was a rough patch to our schedule. ... We want to put out better performances on a consistent basis. Now you need every single win, don’t get me wrong, in the West. But to go out and play better and be more who we are on a nightly basis would be good.”
“We got to get better,” Grizzlies center Marc Gasol said. “We have to be more disciplined. We have to keep everybody accountable, it is that simple.”
Grizzlies: Visit the Los Angeles Clippers on Monday.
Jazz: Visit Cleveland on Tuesday.