Game Preview: Warriors vs. Jazz -12/27/17

MIDWEEK ACTION
The Warriors are set to welcome the Utah Jazz to Oracle Arena Wednesday night. This meeting will be the first of three between these two teams this season, and their first since Golden State swept Utah out of the Western Conference Semifinals in the 2017 playoffs. Tipoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. (Pacific) and fans can watch the action on NBC Sports Bay Area and NBA TV, or listen to the call on 95.7 The Game, the Warriors Mobile App and the Warriors Radio Network.

LAST TIME OUT
Draymond Green's triple-double, Kevin Durant's defense and Klay Thompson's shooting lifted the Dubs past the Cavs, 99-92, on Monday afternoon at Oracle Arena. Full Recap

MATCHUP AT A GLANCE

GSW UTA
27-7 15-20
1st in West 9th in West
PTS: 114.5 (2nd) PTS: 101.1 (25th)
REB: 44.9 (7th) REB: 40.3 (26th)
AST: 30 (1st) AST: 21.1 (23rd)

LAST GAME'S STARTERS
GSW: Patrick McCaw, Klay Thompson, Kevin Durant, Draymond Green and Jordan Bell
UTA: Ricky Rubio, Donovan Mitchell, Joe Ingles, Jonas Jerebko and Derrick Favors

INJURY & ROSTER NOTES
GSW: Andre Iguodala (lower back stiffness) is probable. Stephen Curry (sprained right ankle) is out. Team Notes
UTA: Team Notes

DOMINANT DEFENSE
The Warriors have been held under 100 points six times this season, and three of those instances have come in the last four games. It hasn’t mattered much, though, since Christmas Day marked the third time in four games and the seventh instance in Golden State's last 11 games that they held their opponent to 98 points or less. In fact, in that win over the Cavs, the Warriors held Cleveland to 31.8 percent shooting from the field, Golden State's lowest opponent field goal percentage since holding Cleveland to 31.6 percent on Christmas in 2015. That staunch defensive performance improved the Dubs’ defensive rating on the season to date to 100.8 points allowed per 100 possessions, which ranks as the best in the league. They’ve been far and away the best defensive team in the NBA for basically two months now, limiting their opponents to 98.4 points per 100 possessions since November 1.

TEAM LEADERS

GSW UTA
PTS: Curry (26.3) PTS: Mitchell (17.9)
REB: Green (7.5) REB: Gobert (9.6)
AST: Green (7.4) AST: Rubio (4.9)

UTAH SCOUTING REPORT
They’re not far off, but currently, the Jazz are on the outside looking in. With a record of 15-20 on the season, Utah sits in ninth place in the Western Conference, 3.0 games behind Portland and New Orleans for the final playoff spot. It’s been a struggle as of late, however, as the Jazz have won only two of their last 11 games, although those two victories came against the Celtics and Spurs. Currently, Utah is the only team in the league with a positive point differential and a losing record. Donovan Mitchell, whom the Jazz selected with the 13th overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft, has been a revelation, and currently leads Utah and ranks second among all NBA rookies with an average of 17.9 points per game. Only the Mavericks, Knicks and Hornets have fewer road victories than Utah’s three, a number Golden State will do everything in their power to prevent from increasing on Wednesday night.

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