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Howard a rare bright spot

The Sports Xchange

--Forward Josh Howard, recently back from a month-long absence for knee surgery, had a better start in Game 2 than in Sunday's playoff opener.

The small forward was one of only two Jazz players in double figures with 10 points (Al Jefferson also had 10).

Despite the devastating defeat, Howard kept his chin up in the locker room. One of the more postseason-experienced veterans on the team, he is hoping to help lead the Jazz by his example.

"It is a good thing we have a couple more games to go and we can easily turn this thing around when we get back home," Howard said. "It is tough. Good thing we get the opportunity to get two games in Utah to correct our mistakes. It's just back to the drawing board. We just can't get down on ourselves."

--Forward Derrick Favors helped the Jazz cut the Spurs' lead to five in the first half, but things headed south for Utah in a big way after he was subbed out for Al Jefferson with 6 1/2 minutes remaining in the second quarter.

With Favors on the bench, the Spurs went on a 20-0 run to take a 53-28 halftime lead.

By the time the 6-10 big man finally re-entered with 5:35 left in the third quarter, the Jazz were trailing 70-38. That was a 39-12 San Antonio push in his absence.

"It could be the worst ever (playoff loss) for us. I never witnessed something like that. We're going to leave this one down here in San Antonio and move on to the next one." -- Jazz forward Paul Millsap after his team fell to San Antonio by 31 points Wednesday night -- Utah's first 30-point playoff loss since 2001 (107-77 to Dallas).

Copyright (C) 2012 The Sports Xchange. All Rights Reserved.


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