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Utah Jazz get another unhappy ending in loss to Bulls

Published March 9, 2013 1:48 pm

Utah surrenders final-minute lead in third straight game.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Chicago • The Utah Jazz don't have an open roster spot, but Misery has signed on with this team and is their most reliable clutch performer.

This time the opponent was the Chicago Bulls, their weapon of choice was a Marco Belinelli 3-pointer. But the rest? It felt exactly the same.

With reports circulating that Utah is on the verge of signing D-League standout Travis Leslie, the Jazz lost their third game on this road trip after they held leads in the final minute in all three. But after an overtime loss in Milwaukee and a missed layup in Cleveland, the storyline for the Jazz (32-30), as they struggle to remain playoff relevant, borders on the absurd.

"They didn't draw that up," Al Jefferson said. "That was just the ball bouncing their way."

Belinelli's 3-pointer with 5.9 seconds remaining gave the Bulls, who shot 37 percent from the field, just enough to beat the Jazz 89-88.

It was the Jazz's sixth loss in seven games. The last three, all against the Eastern Conference, have been by a combined five points.

The Jazz appeared to have the latest locked up after Jefferson made an 18-foot jump shot with 51 seconds remaining. On the Bulls' final possession, Belinelli drove against Mo Williams and his floater clanked off.

Jefferson whiffed on the rebound. Then it bounced past Marvin Williams. Finally, Chicago All-Star center Joakim Noah saved the ball from going out of bounds, flipping it to teammate Jimmy Butler. Rebounds were an issue all night for the Jazz who, despite getting double-doubles from both Derrick Favors (11 points, 10 rebounds) and Marvin Williams (14 points, 10 rebounds), gave up 21 offensive rebounds and lost overall on the boards, 50-46.

"I got my hands on the ball, three, four times," Jefferson said. "Everybody touched the ball four or five times, but it still wind up in their hands and to the corner for a lucky shot."

With the ball secured Butler drove into the middle of the lane and lasered a pass to Belinelli in the corner.

Belinelli and former Jazz power forward Carlos Boozer scored 22 points each to lead the Bulls. Boozer added 10 rebounds.

Jefferson corrected himself to say Belinelli's shot wasn't lucky, but a "tough shot." Yet, if opponents aren't getting lucky, it's tough to see the results of the last three games as anything but unlucky for the Jazz.

"All three of these games have been just right there," said Gordon Hayward, who had a chance to win the game on the Jazz's final possession but missed a 15-foot jumper over Belinelli. "A bounce here and there our way and we're 3-0. ... But we're not."

The Jazz have one more chance to salvage a win on the road trip, against the Knicks on Saturday at Madison Square Garden. The Jazz have struggled in back-to-backs this season, and are 3-4 in the second game when both games are played on the road.

But logic, precedent and statistics have had little bearing on the Jazz in recent weeks.

If those things added up to a logical conclusion, the Jazz would have taken the win out of the Windy City.

Jefferson scored 23 points in his first game back after missing three due to a sprained left ankle. The entire Jazz lineup was healthy for the first time since Dec. 22, when Mo Williams tore ligaments in his thumb in a loss at Miami.

The Jazz made their first five shots but quickly fell behind and, despite leading 35-33, by halftime were down nine. In the third quarter, the Jazz got 10 points from Jefferson and 9 from Marvin Williams to cut Chicago's lead to two entering the final period.

In the fourth quarter the lead changed six times.

"We understand that it's part of the journey," coach Tyrone Corbin said. "We have to continue to work and understand what it's going to take to get over the hump. If we don't stay together and keep working, it's not going to happen."

boram@sltrib.com

Twitter: @tribjazz —

Bulls 89, Jazz 88

O The Jazz lose their third game in a row after leading in the final minute.

• The Jazz are now just a half-game up on the Lakers for eighth place in the Western Conference.

• Utah plays at New York on Saturday to wrap up a four-game, 0-3 road trip. —

Jazz at Knicks

O At Madison Square Garden

Tipoff • Saturday, 5:30 p.m.

TV • ROOT Sports

Radio • 1280 AM/97.5 FM

Season series • First matchup

Records • Jazz 32-30, Knicks 37-22

About the Jazz • The Jazz have lost three games in a row by a combined five points, as well as six of their last seven. ... In his first game back after missing three with a sprained left ankle, Al Jefferson scored 23 points in Friday's 89-88 loss to the Chicago Bulls. ... Marvin Williams has come off the bench for two games after being replaced in the starting lineup by Enes Kanter. He scored 14 points and added 10 rebounds against the Bulls.

About the Knicks • Carmelo Anthony has missed his last two games and is a game-time decision due to fluid in his right knee. ... The Knicks are 5-5 in their last 10 games. ... New York is the last team the Jazz have not played this season. Bulls 89, Jazz 88

FG FT Reb

Utah Min M-A M-A O-T A PF Pts

Carroll 9:35 2-5 0-0 1-1 2 3 4

Millsap 20:39 4-9 2-4 2-6 0 3 10

Jefferson 30:21 10-16 3-5 3-6 3 1 23

M Williams 26:45 1-7 0-0 1-4 3 0 2

Foye 21:14 0-4 0-0 0-1 2 2 0

Tinsley 16:44 2-7 1-2 0-1 5 1 5

Favors 27:27 3-6 5-6 3-10 0 4 11

MaWilliams 27:01 6-10 0-0 4-10 1 3 14

Hayward 28:55 2-6 1-1 0-1 1 1 5

Kanter 17:33 5-8 0-0 2-3 0 2 10

Burks 13:46 2-3 0-0 1-3 1 2 4

Totals 240:00 37-81 12-18 17-46 18 22 88

Percentages: FG .457, FT .667. 3-Point Goals: 2-10, .200 (Ma.Williams 2-2, Carroll 0-1, Hayward 0-1, M. Williams 0-1, Foye 0-2, Tinsley 0-3). Team Rebounds: 5. Team Turnovers: 14 (13 PTS). Blocked Shots: 11 (Favors 6, Jefferson 3, Millsap 2). Turnovers: 14 (M. Williams 4, Jefferson 3, Favors 2, Burks, Carroll, Hayward, Tinsley, Ma.Williams). Steals: 6 (Burks, Carroll, Favors, Hayward, Tinsley, Ma.Williams). Technical Fouls: None.

FG FT Reb

Chicago Min M-A M-A O-T A PF Pts

Deng 40:48 4-12 4-4 2-6 1 2 12

Boozer 42:40 10-22 2-3 3-10 1 3 22

Noah 32:11 3-8 3-4 8-13 3 5 9

Robinson 36:04 4-13 5-6 2-6 7 1 14

Belinelli 42:43 7-14 5-5 0-4 3 3 22

Butler 21:47 0-2 1-2 0-3 2 1 1

Mohammed 19:41 2-8 5-6 5-7 0 0 9

Teague 4:05 0-2 0-0 1-1 2 1 0

Totals 239:59 30-81 25-30 21-50 19 16 89

Percentages: FG .370, FT .833. 3-Point Goals: 4-17, .235 (Belinelli 3-4, Robinson 1-8, Butler 0-1, Teague 0-1, Deng 0-3). Team Rebounds: 5. Team Turnovers: 13 (12 PTS). Blocked Shots: 1 (Deng). Turnovers: 11 (Robinson 4, Belinelli 3, Noah 3, Teague). Steals: 8 (Deng 2, Belinelli, Boozer, Butler, Mohammed, Noah, Robinson). Technical Fouls: None.

Utah 23 23 24 18 — 88

Chicago 26 29 17 17 — 89

Attendance • 21,842. Time • 2:23.

Officials • Jason Phillips, Scott Wall, JT Orr.