SAN ANTONIO -- Already listed as one of ESPN's schedule alert matchups, the Utah Jazz's meeting Saturday night with the San Antonio Spurs could have been even more difficult given the travel issues they experienced on the way to the second outing of a back-to-back.
After their 129-97 win Friday night against the Phoenix Suns, the Jazz's plane was forced to turn around and return to Phoenix due to mechanical issues. The team sat on the apron for hours before it was able to switch planes at approximately 2 a.m. PT.
The Jazz didn't make it into the team hotel until close to 6 a.m. PT and skipped their usual game-day activities in addition to canceling their normal meetings for the players.
It didn't, however, affect their play on the court, as Utah downed San Antonio, 120-111. Nevertheless, it still made for an eventful -- and long -- day.
"I'm not a good flyer, so personally, I always get nervous," Jazz coach Quin Snyder said. "We kept seeing lights everywhere, and we were wondering if we were in Texas after 10 minutes, and we were landing. There was a problem with the plane, and they landed it. There were logistical issues, and that's part of it. Our guys know that, and whether it makes it more challenging or not is irrelevant. We got down safe, and we're here for the game."
One team official said that one of the flaps on a wing wasn't raising properly.
The Jazz were playing their third game in five days and lost an hour en route from Phoenix to San Antonio, which played in its 10th day of a 12-day homestand.