OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) -- Thanks to another beautiful performance
by the revitalized Mehmet Okur, the Utah Jazz hung on for an ugly
Okur had 23 points and 14 rebounds, and the Jazz capitalized on
Baron Davis' absence in a 91-85 victory over the Golden State
Warriors on Friday night.
Okur scored 19 points in the second half and Matt Harpring added
15 points for the Jazz, who got their second straight impressive
victory despite a distasteful evening of missed shots and 18
turnovers. While holding off Golden State, they made just one field
goal over the final 6:54 -- rookie Deron Williams' jumper with 4:43
"It's better to win ugly than lose pretty," Harpring said.
"We played our game real well, though. They like to get up and
down the court, and that's not our style. We played our pace. When
we execute and we do it the right way, we're tough to beat."
While the Jazz congratulated themselves on a tough win, the
Warriors didn't react well to their first loss. Golden State kept
its locker room closed to reporters for 29 minutes after the
buzzer, flagrantly violating NBA policy for a closed-door team
meeting featuring shouting that could be heard down the hall.
"We just want to make sure we understand how important these
kinds of games are," said Derek Fisher, who had 18 points. "We're
not going to score 122 points every night. Good teams make
adjustments and find a way to win. We just told ourselves after the
game that it's not going to be enjoyable, high-flying slam-dunking
"We missed 15 free throws, and lost by six. We told each other
that we don't look outside this locker room for reasons we didn't
Jason Richardson scored 18 points for the Warriors, who were a
bit lost without their starting point guard and charismatic team
Davis, who missed 81 games with New Orleans over the previous
three seasons because of injuries, sat out to rest his strained
hamstring after getting hurt in the Warriors' season-opening
victory over Atlanta on Wednesday.
Davis hadn't missed a game with an injury since joining Golden
State on Feb. 24, but the team doesn't know whether he'll be
available for Sunday's road opener at New York.
Utah's Carlos Boozer is out with a strained hamstring. But the
Jazz were much more resourceful than Golden State without an
important player in uniform -- mostly thanks to inspired play from
Okur, who spent much of his first season with the Jazz on the
The Turkish center had 27 points and eight rebounds in the
Jazz's season-opening win over Dallas, and he was similarly
aggressive against the Warriors. His steady play kept Utah in front
despite a sub-par game by Andrei Kirilenko, who had 11 points on
"I'm feeling good. I'm more excited," Okur said. "I don't
know what happened in the first half (2-of-7 shooting). A few shots
were wide open, and I couldn't make it. ... It got better,
Of course, an ugly effort doesn't please coach Jerry Sloan, who
got his 945th career victory to pass Bill Fitch for fifth place on
the NBA's career list.
"We've been lucky," Sloan said. "We caught Dallas the other
night when they played the night before, and (the Warriors) tonight
had Baron out."
And what about Okur's efforts?
"A year ago, he wasn't in real good shape to play basketball,"
Sloan said. "This year, he's got in better shape. He has some
skill. He can shoot and he can rebound, and you can't do that when
you're not in good shape."
At the end of three fairly close quarters, the Jazz took a
double-digit lead on Okur's 3-pointer with 7.4 seconds left. Utah
briefly led by 14 points in the fourth, but Golden State used a
17-7 rally to get within 79-75.
Utah countered with a 12-3 run, including 10 points on free
Mike Dunleavy scored 13 points and Troy Murphy had 12 points and
eight rebounds while attempting a career-high 14 free throws before
fouling out for the Warriors.
Warriors rookie G Aaron Miles, who made the club as an
undrafted free agent from Kansas, got his first NBA points with
10:50 to play. Andris Biedrins, active for the opener, was
scratched. ... Utah C Robert Whaley finished his two-game
suspension for punching Lakers C Adam Parada during a preseason
game. ... Davis played in 262 consecutive games to begin his