Beleaguered San Antonio Spurs facing off with the Utah Jazz on Monday, Dec. 26

'We just have to keep fighting,' forward Keldon Johnson recently told reporters. 'No one is going to feel sorry for us, hold our hand or baby us. This is the NBA.'

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click to enlarge The Spurs have faced some tough stretches this season. - Spurs / Reginald Thomas II
Spurs / Reginald Thomas II
The Spurs have faced some tough stretches this season.
Prior to the season, expectations were low for a Utah Jazz team that traded away All-Stars Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert for Lauri Markkanen, Collin Sexton and a slew of future first-round draft picks — all signs of a rebuild.

However, stellar play from Markkanen and former Wagner High School phenom Jordan Clarkson fueled a surprisingly hot start for the Jazz, who eventually cooled off after losing starting point guard Mike Conley to a strained leg.

The Spurs have faced some tough stretches of their own this season, including the first double-digit losing streak of the Gregg Popovich era, which dropped the team to dead last in the Western Conference standings.

After a lopsided 133-95 loss to the Phoenix Suns that extended the skid to 11 games, forward Keldon Johnson addressed San Antonio's struggles.

"We just have to keep fighting," Johnson recently told reporters. "No one is going to feel sorry for us, hold our hand or baby us. This is the NBA."

$24 and up, 7 p.m. Monday, Dec. 26, AT&T Center Parkway, One AT&T Center, (210) 444-5000, attcenter.com, Bally Sports SW-SA.

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