Jazz 95, Bucks 86
It took Al Jefferson and the rest of the Jazz 24 hours to get
over how badly they played in New Orleans. Good thing Utah never
seems to repeat a poor performance.
Deron Williams scored 22 points and added 11 assists, leading
the Jazz past the Milwaukee Bucks 95-86 and overcoming a
double-digit deficit for the ninth time this season on Saturday
The Jazz (19-9) avoided losing consecutive games for the first
time since starting 0-2 and shook off a season-low 71 points on
Friday in New Orleans with a second-half surge after falling behind
by 12 early to Milwaukee.
”I just don’t see we could play worse than that. There was no
chance of playing worse than that, no chance of shooting worse than
that,” Williams said. ”We’re a resilient team. We took last night
personal. It was an embarrassing loss and we had to put forth a
better effort tonight.”
Jefferson had 18 points and nine rebounds, C.J. Miles scored 16
points and Paul Millsap had 15 for the Jazz, which had 10 of its 14
offensive rebounds in the second half.
”We were attacking the basket, got a couple of lucky bounces.
We were just aggressive,” Jefferson said. ”We don’t never panic,
last night was just one of them nights where we never could get our
heads back above water, but other than that, we really don’t
The effort against the Hornets was the type coach Jerry Sloan
said would keep him up at night, but he’ll sleep soundly now
continuing this four-game, 4,300-mile road trip that finishes with
stops in Cleveland and Minnesota.
”We’ve had games like we did last night. It’s not the first
time. The important thing as a group and as an organization, you
hope that they come back and see the importance of the game,”
Andrew Bogut scored 19 points and had nine rebounds and John
Salmons returned from back spasms to contribute 18 points, but the
Bucks couldn’t hold on to the lead.
Brandon Jennings gave Milwaukee an 80-79 lead on a layup with
6:22 left, but Williams, who had been whistled for a technical foul
on the bench earlier in the quarter, answered with a 3 for the
fifth lead change of the fourth.
Williams said he didn’t deserve the technical.
”I asked him if he was a rookie. I thought he was. He took that
personally, what can you do?” said Williams, who scored 15 of his
22 in the second half.
Salmons threw a bad pass that ended up in the hands of Francisco
Elson, who flipped it to Andrei Kirilenko for a dunk. Bogut
answered, but Kirilenko hit a long jumper, Millsap made a layup,
Williams added two free throws and Jefferson tipped in a miss to
make it 92-82 with 3:29 left. The Jazz scored 25 second-chance
points, and didn’t wait for the fourth quarter to make a big run,
using a 15-3 spurt early in the second half.
Millsap stole the ball from Jennings and missed a layup on the
other end that Williams followed with a putback. Jefferson then hit
a short jumper to give Utah a 52-48 lead.
On the other end, Bogut appeared to jam his right arm trying to
dunk over Millsap, and was gripping his elbow and shaking out the
same hand he injured in an ugly fall in April, but stayed in the
”It’s OK, a dead arm,” Bogut said. ”Just felt funny, went
numb. I came back. It just felt weird shooting without
The Jazz took a 58-49 lead, but Milwaukee, playing its only home
game in a two-week stretch, tied it before Raja Bell hit a
3-pointer to give Utah a 71-68 lead heading into the fourth.
The Bucks raced out to a double-digit lead to start the game and
Drew Gooden hit consecutive jumpers midway through the second
quarter to give the Bucks their biggest lead of the first half at
Utah took its first lead with the first four points of the third
quarter and went on to sweep the season series against the Bucks
after also winning on Nov. 29 in Salt Lake City.
”Both games were pretty similar,” Bucks coach Scott Skiles
said. ”They had more assists, they had more steals, they had fewer
turnovers, they shot the 3 better, got to the line more. An awful
lot of that revolved around the offensive glass.”
Notes: Bogut, the No. 1 overall pick in 2005, played in the
350th game of his career. … Sloan is two wins away from
surpassing Pat Riley (1,210) for third on the career coaching list.
… Milwaukee has made eight coaching changes since Sloan took over
in Utah in 1988. … Jazz PF Mehmet Okur, in his second game back
since rupturing his left Achilles’ tendon, went 1 for 5 for three