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SportsBeat Locker Room Extra

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Did anyone really expect to see "nasty" tonight?

Jerry Sloan seemed to call out his team after their heartless game one loss.

"We're not a nasty team. Most teams we've had have been pretty nasty. They'd get after you from daylight to dark." said Sloan.

The Jazz responded to those comments by giving up 41 points in the 1st quarter of Game Two.

The Lakers made 18 of 21 shots in the quarter which included a span of 11 straight makes. That's 86 percent shooting! What made it worse is that Kobe Bryant only took two shots in that dreadful 1st quarter. Much of the scoring came from the Lakers bigs who were able to work inside with ease. Pau Gasol, Andrew Bynum and Lamar Odom didn't miss in the quarter combining to go 12-12 from the field.

The most disappointing thing about the opening quarter was the Lakers saw little or no resistance. The Jazz committed just 1 foul. ONE! It happened with 37 seconds left in the quarter. Poor defense has been the reason the Jazz have lost 10 of their last 12 games.

There are reasons for optimism following the Game Two loss. The Jazz weathered that hot Laker start to cut the lead to six. They survived several Laker runs and a 20 point deficit to get within 6 on several occasions. Five straight points by Carlos Boozer cut the lead to three with 3:16 left in the game.

It wasn't something you would describe as "nasty" but the Jazz did show signs that they won't go down without a fight.

One Jazzman who was nasty was Deron Williams. He had a huge night with 35 points, 9 assists, two blocks and 4 steals but I'm sure his 7 turnovers will sting until he gets back on the floor for game 3.

They return to Salt Lake City with hope where, with the help of Jazz fans, will try to even this series by Saturday night. But without Memo, and the way they are playing defense, the chances of the Jazz competing in this series look bleak.

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Utah JazzSports
Jeremiah Jensen Sports Reporter


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