The Utah Jazz came in to tonights meeting with Toronto having won 11 straight over the Raptors, oh how sweet win #12 in row must feel for a Jazz team who needed a win in the worst way. Once again it was Al Jefferson who led the way for the Jazz with 34 points and 8 reb and no points were bigger than the last 2, a tip-in off a Devin Harris miss as time expired.
“I just got my hand on the ball and I tipped it up,” Jefferson said. “The basketball God was on our side tonight, that’s all I’ve got to say.”
CJ Miles added 23 points and 7 rebounds and spent much of the 4th quarter playing the power forward position for a depleted Jazz squad who were without starting forwards Paul Millsap and Andrei Kirilenko. Utah finished off the Raptors with a 24 to 8 4th quarter run.
Devin Harris added 23 points for the Jazz, despite dislocating his finger during the game and having it popped back in place. Utah is now 3 and 9 in their last 12 games.
Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin summed up his teams effort by saying, ” they got up by 12 points on us and we continued to fight. That’s what we have to do every night.We don’t want to give up the lead, but if we do give up the lead and there is time on the clock we want to count on each other and trust each other and know that we can do it if we continue to work together as a group.”
The Jazz got some much needed help in their playoff chase as the Knicks beat the Grizzlies, in Memphis. Utah is now only 1 game behind the Grizzles in the loss column, and 2 games behind the Hornets in the loss column for the 8th and final playoff spot. The Jazz have 1 game remaining against Memphis and 2 games left vs the Hornets, so they have the opportunity to sneak into the playoffs despite their miserable recent stretch of games.
However, in order to do so they will need to continue to pull out victories against teams like Toronto and their next opponent, Minnesota who is tied with Washington for the 3rd fewest wins in the NBA.