NBA Game Summary - Portland at Utah
(Monday, December 31st)
Final Score: Utah 111, Portland 101
Salt Lake City, UT (Sports Network) - Carlos Boozer paced a balanced Utah attack with 19 points as the Jazz put a halt to Portland's 13-game winning streak by downing the Blazers, 111-101, at EnergySolutions Arena.
The winning streak was the second-longest in Trail Blazers history, trailing a franchise-best 16-game streak by the 1990-91 club.
Deron Williams added 18 points and eight assists for the Jazz, who snapped a two-game skid. Matt Harpring came off the bench to deposit 15 points and pull down eight rebounds, while Andrei Kirilenko and Paul Millsap both chipped in with 14 points apiece.
LaMarcus Aldridge had a career-high 36 points for the Trail Blazers, who lost for the first time since a 100-79 loss to San Antonio on December 2. Brandon Roy finished with 17 points, while James Jones had 15 points off the bench.
"Utah played a really good game tonight," Roy said. "They were physical. They made shots when they needed to. Our Achilles heel has been stopping teams from rebounding. They dominated us on the boards tonight and they got us tonight. We weren't able to make up for it."
Utah entered the final frame with an eight-point cushion and continued to play frontrunner as the game headed toward the stretch. Kyle Korver, making his Jazz debut after being acquired from the Philadelphia 76ers for the disgruntled Gordan Giricek, leaked out for an easy layup to give Utah a 101-91 lead with 4:43 remaining.
"He's an interesting guy," Jazz coach Jerry Sloan said of Korver. "He has an ability to be able to shoot the basketball. He works hard to try to get himself open for shots that he can make. Teams have to guard him out there."
Roy answered by sticking a jumper for Portland but Boozer matched him with a slam to stem any momentum.
Both teams went cold from there and the Blazers never managed a final run as Utah cruised to the finish line.
"We got out and got a little bit of a cushion in the game and then there at the end we were able to make our free throws," Boozer said. "You know every team loves to play at home and we are one of those teams that does a lot better at home. So we are looking forward to taking advantage of the games that we do have here at the EnergySolutions Arena."
The Blazers took a 29-23 edge after the opening 12 minutes but Utah bounced back to take a 52-50 lead at intermission.
The Jazz extended their lead to 87-79 at the end of three quarters.
Portland coach Nate McMillan was attending a family funeral and not with the team. Assistant Dean Demopoulos coached for McMillan...This was the third of four meetings between the clubs this season. The Trail Blazers won the first two contests and snapped a six-game series road losing streak with a 97-89 victory in Utah on December 11, 2007...Portland is scheduled to host the Jazz on January 5, 2008 at the Rose Garden...The Jazz are now 11-3 at home this season and will host the 76ers on Wednesday...Kirilenko played despite a strained right biceps.
12/31 23:41:31 ET