NBA Game Summary - Utah at Orlando
(Wednesday, November 17th)
Final Score: Orlando 107, Utah 92
Orlando, FL (Sports Network) - Steve Francis poured in a season-high 33 points, handed out 11 assists and grabbed nine rebounds to lead the Orlando Magic past the Utah Jazz, 107-92, at TD Waterhouse Centre.
Grant Hill chipped in a season-high 32 points to go along with five boards and five assists for Orlando, which remained unbeaten at home this season (4-0). Francis and Hill combined to shoot 24-of-34 from the floor.
Hedo Turkoglu scored 12 points and Dwight Howard pulled down 10 rebounds for the Magic, who outscored the Jazz 36-17 in the fourth quarter.
"I thought we came out flat early in the game and weren't really in a rhythm and Utah, pretty much, was getting what they wanted," said Francis. "We had to come in at halftime and thinking that if we really wanted to continue to play that way or play hard and we came out and played harder in the second half."
Carlos Boozer collected 27 points and eight boards for Utah. Mehmet Okur netted 13 points and Andrei Kirilenko added 12 for the Jazz. Okur also had seven rebounds, while Kirilenko ended with eight.
Okur's three-point play with 8:31 left in the fourth quarter gave Utah an 80-76 lead.
Orlando then responded with an 18-4 burst to grab a 94-84 advantage with 3:14 remaining. Francis scored 10 points and Hill added six during the run
After Kirilenko scored on a follow-up for the Jazz, DeShawn Stevenson converted a three-point play and Francis followed with a jumper from the corner to stake the Magic to a commanding 99-86 lead with just 1:58 left.
The margin reached as many as 17 at 107-90 in the closing seconds.
"That was a good solid win for us," said Orlando head coach Johnny Davis. "Utah is a very, very good basketball team and they just keep coming after you. They're relentless and for us to beat a quality opponent like that is another step for us."
The Jazz used a 14-2 spurt in the first quarter, keyed by five points from Boozer, to take a 20-8 lead.
Utah still maintained a comfortable advantage at 28-17, before Francis closed the period with consecutive baskets to make it a seven-point contest after 12 minutes.
After the Jazz went back up by 11 early in the second quarter, Orlando countered with an 8-0 spurt, ignited by Turkoglu's three-pointer, to cut the deficit to 34-31 with eight minutes left in the period.
Utah eventually carried a 46-45 lead into the locker room. Boozer ended the first half with 13 points, while Hill had 13 in the opening 24 minutes for the Magic.
In the third quarter, Boozer's jumper with 5 1/2 minutes remaining gave the Jazz a 64-60 lead. The Magic then scored nine of the next 11 points to move in front by three.
However, Utah answered with a 9-2 run of its own and held a 75-71 advantage after 36 minutes.
It marked Hill's first 30-point game since 2000...Utah suffered just its second loss in eight games this season...The Jazz have still captured six of the last 10 meetings between the two teams...Raja Bell contributed 10 points and eight rebounds for Utah...Orlando center Kelvin Cato made his first appearance in four games since spraining his right ankle and finished with nine points, six rebounds and three blocks. Meanwhile, Magic guard Cuttino Mobley missed his fourth straight game with a strained groin.
11/17 23:14:21 ET