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Steve Kerr is never one to sugarcoat things and that certainly didn’t change when asked to describe what he saw after his Golden State Warriors suffered their worst loss of the season, a 129-99 beatdown at the hands of the Utah Jazz at Vivint Smart Home Arena.
“I saw one team get their ass kicked,” he said. “That’s what I saw.”
The defending champion Warriors (40-11) were beaten from wire to wire by the Jazz (22-28), who are fighting for a playoff spot in the Western Conference.
Utah outscored Golden State in every quarter, limiting the Warriors to but 14 points in the fourth quarter. The Warriors turned the basketball over 20 times, leading to 18 points for the Jazz, and shot an abysmal 5-of-25 from 3.
“I think our guys will tell you that was a pathetic effort out there,” Kerr said. “That was disgusting basketball.
“We just didn’t start out the game with any force defensively. We weren’t staying into bodies, they were just stopping behind screens, we were lazy on our switches. We played with no sense of urgency, no sense of purpose, and they’re obviously fighting for the playoffs.”
Ricky Rubio (23 points, 11 assists), rookie guard Donovan Mitchell (20 points) and Joe Ingles led the Jazz, who are 3.5 games out of the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference standings, with 20 points, canning 6-of-8 from 3-point range.
The man assigned to guard Ingles, Kevin Durant, didn’t attempt to pawn off the responsibility of what happened.
“I can’t let Joe Ingles get loose on 3s like that and expect us to play well on the road, especially in here,” Durant, who scored 17 points on 5-of-13 shooting, said. “I got to start off the game better if we want to win games.”
Klay Thompson scored a game-high 27 points, shooting 12-of-17 from the floor, for Golden State, while backup center JaVale McGee had 14, shooting 7-of-8.
Steph Curry, who scored 14 points on a 4-of-13 shooting performance, said the Warriors didn’t bring their A game.
“I asked Draymond [Green] on the bench in the fourth quarter if he could remember that bad of a performance that we’ve had in recent memory, and we really can’t,” he said. “You can’t just show up, especially on the road, and expect to win.
“That’s kind of cheating the game.”