Derrick Favors took advantage of his opportunity when the game was on the line.
“Most coaches will tell you need to just play your game and don’t try to do anything you can’t do. But when it got down to crunch time, I told myself, `I’m going to try and win this game,”’ Favors said.
The 20-year-old power forward has rarely been on the court when a game is tight at the finish, but he made the most of his opportunity Saturday night.
Starting for Al Jefferson, Favors had career highs with 23 points and 17 rebounds to help the Utah Jazz edge the Golden State Warriors 99-92 in overtime.
Favors, whose previous scoring high was 20 points before he came to Utah from New Jersey in the trade for Deron Williams last season, made a three-point play and a block in the closing seconds of regulation to send the game to overtime.
Paul Millsap scored 13 points and Gordon Hayward had 12 and the Jazz overcame 41.6 percent shooting with a 65-40 rebounding advantage.
“The frustrating thing is that we had the opportunity to close out the game. We needed one stop and we couldn’t get it done. It’s disappointing,” Golden State coach Mark Jackson said.
The Jazz half-court offense often sputtered without Jefferson—the team’s first option who will also miss the game against the Lakers on Sunday—until Favors wore down the Warriors with his rebounding tenacity.