Philadelphia • Gone are the days of Mo Williams proclaiming that he prefers playing on the road. Suddenly, having everyone and everything going against you doesn’t seem so appealing. The Jazz have taken that test and failed.
These are the days of the Jazz needing a 3-pointer from Al Jefferson in Toronto to win a single road game, of Saturday’s game at winless Washington looking about as inviting as a tango with a grizzly.
“We showed some fight,” Tyrone Corbin said after the Jazz’s latest road letdown, this one a 99-93 loss to the 76ers at the Wells Fargo Center.
What the Jazz (4-6) have not shown is an ability to close out games away from EnergySolutions Arena, where they are 3-0. The Jazz overcame two double-digit deficits behind an inspired night from end-of-the-bench glue guy DeMarre Carroll, but the result was the same as Wednesday in Boston, Saturday in Denver, and in Memphis, in San Antonio and New Orleans: A loss.
The Jazz very nearly avoided that result this time, and for that opportunity they can thank Paul Millsap, who scored 22 points — 20 in the second half — and Carroll.
The Jazz tied the game at 71 on a jumper by Randy Foye, and pulled within four on a 3-pointer by Mo Williams with 3:29 remaining. But on the next possession, Williams missed an ill-advised transition 3, sending the Sixers on an 8-3 run.
Carroll, the erstwhile starter who first moved down the Jazz rotation and then entirely out of the rotation, provided a spark the Jazz sorely needed in the second quarter.
He scored eight points in the quarter, keying a 17-2 Jazz run that saw the Jazz take a brief 35-32 lead. Carroll finished with a career-high 17 points.
Carroll eclipsed his previous career high of 16, which he scored on April 8 against the Spurs.
That Corbin called on Carroll at all may have been the upset of the game.
Carroll had not played meaningful minutes since Nov. 3 in San Antonio. But Corbin saw Jason Richardson get open shot after open shot, and Evan Turner turning the corner with too much frequency.
“I wanted a defensive guy to come out and be aggressive,” he said.Next Page »