NBA Game Summary - Utah at Orlando
(Friday, December 21st)
Final Score: Utah 113, Orlando 94
Orlando, FL (Sports Network) - Paul Millsap had a career-high 28 points, including a solo nine-point run in the third quarter, keying the Utah Jazz to a 113-94 win over the Orlando Magic.
Carlos Boozer scored 24, grabbed nine rebounds, and added eight assists for Utah, which snapped a two-game losing streak. Andrei Kirilenko finished with 18 points and eight boards, and Deron Williams added 17 points for the Jazz, who won just their second game in the past 10 contests.
Hedo Turkoglu led Orlando with 27 points, and Dwight Howard finished with 20 points and 13 rebounds, but the Magic lost their third out of four. Rashard Lewis, who had been questionable with a sore neck, chipped in 12 points.
Millsap came alive in the third quarter, scoring 13 points, all of which came in the final six minutes. But his nine consecutive points proved to be the game breaker.
With Utah up by one with a little over five minutes left, Millsap converted a three-point play, added consecutive layups, and sank a jumper with 2:41 left to put the Jazz ahead 75-65.
Millsap added another layup later in the stanza, and Utah held a 79-70 lead going into the fourth.
"I was trying to be more aggressive and assertive on the court," Millsap said. "Guys were just finding me through the seams. Sometimes you just have to exploit that and continue to do that."
The Jazz built on that lead in the final quarter with numerous spurts of scoring. Utah scored seven straight points starting with a Jason Hart technical free throw with 10:57 left. It ended when Millsap made two free throws for an 88-73 advantage with 9:41 left.
Several minutes later, Boozer had a three-point play and C.J. Miles added a jumper to put Utah up 93-77 with 7:45 left. Orlando didn't come closer than 15 points the rest of the game.
"That team plays way too hard for us and they're way too tough for us, bottom line," Magic head coach Stan Van Gundy said. "And until we change the way we play and play harder, it will not stop."
The Magic led by as many as eight in the first quarter, when Howard's layup with 4:27 left made the score 23-15. But Boozer connected on a hook shot, Kirilenko drained a three to bring Utah within three, and Matt Harpring had two buckets to close out the stanza and give the Jazz a 28-27 lead.
The game remained tight in the second quarter, and the Magic took a 50-49 lead into the break after Turkoglu sank two free throws to end the half. Turkoglu finished with 15 in the half, while Millsap led Utah with 11.
"We were ahead by one at the half simply because we shot the ball well," Van Gundy said. "And when the threes stop falling, we had no chance because we can't compete with them. We just can't compete."
Millsap's previous career-high was 24, set on November 7 against Cleveland...Orlando falls to 5-6 at home this season...The Jazz are now 1-2 on a current four-game road trip, and finish it out Saturday in Miami...Utah shot 53.2 percent, while Orlando had a 45.5 mark...The Magic got to the free throw line fewer times (24) than the Jazz made foul shots (26).
12/21 23:21:51 ET