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National Basketball Association
                   === Jefferson helps Jazz beat Blazers ===
 Salt  Lake  City, UT (Sports  Network) - Al Jefferson  posted 21 points and 10
 rebounds  to pace  the Utah  Jazz  to an  86-77  win over  the Portland  Trail
 Paul  Millsap contributed  15 points, Randy Foye 14 and DeMarre Carroll 13 for
 Utah, which raced out to a big first-half lead and won for the seventh time in
 its last nine contests.
 These team will meet again Saturday in Portland.
 "We  know they're going  to come out with a lot of energy and they're going to
 play  hard  to try and  get a  win on their  home court," Jazz forward Derrick
 Favors  said  about Saturday's  game. "We have  got to come  out with the same
 Rookie  Damian Lillard,  who played college ball at Weber State, scored 26 for
 Portland. LaMarcus Aldridge ended with 16 points and 10 rebounds.
 Trail  Blazers  guard Wesley  Matthews was  helped off the  court in the third
 quarter  with a severely sprained right ankle. Matthews isn't expected to play
 in the rematch Saturday night in Portland.
 Matthews was driving to the basket when he slipped and turned his ankle before
 tumbling to the court with 4:13 left in the period. He immediately grabbed for
 his  ankle and was  later assisted off the court by teammates J.J. Hickson and
 Jared Jeffries.
 Matthews  was  later taken to the  Utah locker room via wheelchair for x-rays,
 which turned up negative.
 Foye's  1-of-2 performance  at the foul line capped 11 straight points for the
 Jazz  to  take them  to a  25-17 lead  with under  a minute  left in the first
 Utah  dominated  the second quarter from  the aspect of its shooting. The Jazz
 went  12-of-17  from the  floor in the  period and surged  to a 51-36 halftime
 Carroll's  layup moved the hosts to a 38-23 cushion midway through the period,
 and the lead reached as high as 17.
 The  double-digit  margin remained  throughout the third  quarter with a 73-61
 difference going to the fourth.
 Aldridge's  successful bank shot finished a 9-0 run to cut the margin to 78-72
 with  5:28 left, and then Lillard buried a 3-pointer for an 80-75 contest with
 3:57 to go.
 Lillard  had a chance to bring the Blazers closer, but another 3-point try was
 off  the mark.  Utah scored the next  six points to seal the outcome. The Jazz
 held the Blazers without a point from the 3:57 mark until Will Barton's bucket
 with 16 seconds left.
 "We  fought so hard  to get back I think we ran out of gas," said Lillard. "It
 was  more of us  putting ourselves in that position, so we have to do a better
 job of playing four quarters."
                                   Game Notes
 Blazers  guard Ronnie  Price turned his right ankle late in the fourth quarter
 after  being  bumped into by  Foye ... Utah  guard Earl Watson departed midway
 through  the fourth quarter with right leg soreness ... The Jazz, who are 17-5
 at home this season, swept all four games with Portland last season.
 02/02 01:36:52 ET

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