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Sat, Feb 28, 2009 - 9:00 PM ET
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Jazz top Kings to extend win streak to 7

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP)

The Utah Jazz gave owner Larry H. Miller the most fitting send-off possible. The Jazz beat the Sacramento Kings 102-89 on Saturday, extending Utah's winning streak to seven straight just hours after Miller's funeral in the same building. "It was tough — especially on a game day. It was really emotional, seeing the whole family up there," said Ronnie Brewer, who scored a career-high 26 points. "But when we stepped on the court it was business." All business — just like Miller, the one-time auto parts clerk who built a car dealership empire and was one of the state's most prominent businessmen. He was laid to rest Saturday after a 90-minute ceremony at EnergySolutions Arena, one of the many legacies he left behind. Miller, 64, died of complications from diabetes on Feb. 20. Mehmet Okur also scored 26, Deron Williams added 16 points and 11 assists and Paul Millsap had 12 rebounds for the Jazz, who went 10-1 in February. Kevin Martin had 19 points to lead the Kings, who haven't won back-to-back games since November. Rashad McCants had 17 points and Bobby Jackson scored 14 for Sacramento. The Kings, who beat the Clippers the night before in Sacramento, faded as Utah corrected some mistakes that led to 13 turnovers in the first half. Utah had just four turnovers in the second half and outscored the Kings 23-16 in the final period. It took the Jazz until midway through the fourth period to finally pull away with an 11-0 run, which Brewer started with a 3-pointer after the Kings had pulled within a point. "That was the reason we were able to break open the game," Williams said of Brewer. "He was all over the place. He was very active. He got steals, energized the crowd with his dunks and just finished well tonight. Brewer finished 10-for-18 from the floor and had seven rebounds, four steals, a block and two assists. He played all of the second half. "He's still young, trying to learn how to get better and that's one of the things we like about him," Utah coach Jerry Sloan said. The Kings faded in the final quarter as the fatigue of back-to-back games took effect. Coach Kenny Natt, a former assistant to Sloan, said the Kings are full of young players who are still learning and got a lesson on Saturday from the Jazz, who finally have everybody healthy for the playoff stretch. "This is a very good ball club and no one knows it better than me how good they are and how hard they work," Natt said of Utah. "We were in the game early. We were working hard, getting steals, pushing the ball down and getting layups." That all stopped in the fourth quarter, when Utah clamped down and Brewer capped his career night. He opened the decisive run with a 3-pointer, then the Jazz held the Kings scoreless for almost five minutes. Brewer also had a steal that led to his own dunk and a thrilling save during the spurt that put Utah in command for good. Although the Kings never led, they were never more than nine points behind until the final quarter. "They switched everything. They tried to make the game ugly so we weren't able to get the flow on offense like we wanted to," Williams said. After Will Solomon made a 3 to get the Kings within 80-79, Millsap followed Brewer's 3-pointer by blocking Solomon's layup and starting a fast break, which Andrei Kirilenko completed on an alley-oop from Williams with 8:27 left to play. Brewer saved the ball from going out of bounds with a blind pass to Kirilenko, who couldn't control it but dived on the floor and managed to roll the loose ball to Williams. He was fouled on the drive and made one of his free throws to put Utah up 91-79 with 5:08 remaining. Martin made a jumper for Sacramento's first points since Solomon's 3, but the Jazz went right back to Brewer for a dunk and Utah continued to take advantage of the Kings' 19 turnovers. "I think we have a lot of potential, but at the end of the day you're not going to beat nobody with 18 to 20 turnovers," Jackson said.

Notes

Brewer's previous career high was 25 in December against Minnesota. ... The Jazz had a chance for a six-point halftime lead but allowed Jason Thompson to sneak behind the defense and make a dunk with 0.4 seconds left in the second quarter and cut Utah's lead to 54-50. ... The Jazz outscored the Kings in the paint 56-42. .. Francisco Garcia scored 13 and Thompson pulled down 12 rebounds for Sacramento. Spencer Hawes added 11 boards for the Kings.
Tagged: Kings, Jazz

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