'State of the Jazz'

'State of the Jazz'

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SALT LAKE CITY -- President Barack Obama addressed the nation Tuesday night and was met with warm applause and hopeful anticipation by those on Capitol Hill. In return, President Obama proceeded to lift the hope of Americans from coast to coast who felt as though he had given a few of their weighted questions an answer, and given their haziness some clarity.

The State of the Jazz was left on a much less inspiring note Wednesday night, as Deron Williams sat disappointed and confused after the Jazz dropped their sixth straight game in a 112-105 loss to San Antonio, despite coming within four of the Spurs in the final quarter.

"If I knew (what the problem is), it wouldn't be a problem," Williams said. "Hopefully we snap out of it. We can't afford to keep losing."

If I knew (what the problem is), it wouldn't be a problem.

–Deron Williams

Throughout the last six games, the Jazz have dropped to No. 6 in the Western Conference behind two losses to conference opponents and five road losses in a row.

They've lost games by 7, 8, 24, 11, 29 and 7 points, respectively.

Unlike previous and fairly brief intervals of inadequate performances in the season, the Jazz are also playing with a healthy and loaded roster.

Still, after nearly reinstating their comeback nickname with a surge of energy and power in the second half, Williams didn't offer up any solutions for the slumping team besides simply playing better.

"We just lost our sixth game straight. We played better, we played harder, but we still lost and it tastes bitter," Williams said. "We just have to play better all around. We have to play harder, play smarter, execute better, play better defense, rebound better. We're not doing anything exceptionally well right now."

Williams was hardly the issue for the Jazz against San Antonio as he posted a season-high 39 points, matching the offensive production of the Spurs' Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili combined. 29 of Williams' points came in the second half, but seven of his nine assists came in the first.

I don't count (the Jazz) out of anything - they'll find a way to get it done.

–Tim Duncan

"They never (go away), we didn't expect them to. We knew they were gonna make a run, and that's what we expected from them," Duncan said.

The words of the San Antonio veteran likely projected more faith for Jazz fans than those of Williams as Duncan expressed his feelings about the 2010-2011 Utah team.

"They're still playing very hard, they still execute. I think it's just a bad stretch they're going through, (and) I think they'll be fine," Duncan said. "I don't count them out of anything. They'll find a way to get it done."

E-mail: lfrome@ksl.com

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Liz Frome Sports Writer/Editor


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