NBA Game Summary - Utah at Toronto
(Wednesday, December 22nd)
Final Score: Toronto 98, Utah 86
Toronto, ON (Sports Network) - Donyell Marshall came off the bench to post 22 points and eight rebounds as the Toronto Raptors held on for a 98-86 victory over the Utah Jazz at Air Canada Center.
Chris Bosh added 18 points with eight boards for Toronto, which won its third straight home game. The Raptors' third consecutive win over Utah gave them their first-ever season sweep of the Jazz.
In a move to boost his team's work ethic, Toronto coach Sam Mitchell pulled Jalen Rose from the starting lineup and inserted the newly acquired Eric Williams. Rose provided a spark off the bench with all 12 of his points in the first half as Raptors opened up an early 15-point advantage.
"I felt we needed what Eric brings to the table," Mitchell said. "Defense and rebounding, I just thought we needed a little push."
"I just feel like I'm being demoted," said Rose, who was not in the starting lineup for the first time since November 10, 2003. "It's not the first time...I feel like I was treated unfairly, but at the same time, I'm going to be a pro."
Carlos Boozer recorded a game-high 29 points to go with 10 rebounds for the Jazz, losers in eight of their last nine contests on the road. Matt Harpring chipped in 14 points while Mehmet Okur collected 11 points and 15 boards.
Toronto's lead grew to 18 early in the third period, but it quickly evaporated courtesy of an 18-5 surge by the Jazz. Boozer had 12 of his team's points during the rally that got Utah within five at 65-60 with just over three minutes to play in the third.
Okur's basket in the final 30 seconds of the third made it a two-point game, but Lamond Murray's dunk just over four minutes into the fourth capped a string of eight consecutive Toronto points.
Utah once again closed within three with under four minutes remaining before Marshall knocked down a key three-pointer to extend the lead to 84-77.
Marshall drained another trey two minutes later to make it 89-80, and the Raptors were able to hold on the rest of the way.
"We kind of got away from our game plan later in the third," Bosh said. "We stopped going inside and stopped running. We knew that we had to pick it up, give them one shot and make sure we get back on defense."
Rose entered late in the first quarter with his team trailing by one, and the Raptors finished off a 9-3 spurt around two minutes later on Bosh's jumper to seize a 23-17 lead. Rose then tallied the final five Toronto points in the frame to go up 28-19 heading into the second.
The hot shooting continued for Rose as he drained his second three-pointer early on in the period to push the margin to 31-19. The difference fluctuated between five and 15 points for the duration of the half. Okur scored from the paint at the halftime buzzer to narrow the gap to 50-37.
Rose's 12 points in the first half led all scorers.
Utah has dropped four of its last five games overall...Toronto has alternated wins and losses for the past six tilts...Williams finished with 11 points and eight rebounds...Marshall was 4-for-8 from three-point territory...Raptors guard Rafer Alston dished out a career-best 14 assists.
12/22 22:50:46 ET