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Utah Jazz: Ex-Jazzman Foye leads Nuggets over old team, 101-94

Utah Jazz center Enes Kanter, left, of Turkey, works ball inside as Denver Nuggets center Timofey Mozgov, of Russia, covers in the first quarter of an NBA basketball game in Denver on Saturday, April 12, 2014. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

The Salt Lake Tribune

First published Apr 12 2014 11:29PM
Updated Apr 12, 2014 11:41PM

Denver • The Jazz know all about Randy Foye’s 3-point abilities.

The veteran guard hit 178 of them last year in Utah, setting the franchise record for triples in a single season.

Saturday night, Foye took his old team down memory lane. The Nuggets sharpshooter hit three 3-pointers in the fourth quarter and finished with a game-high 26 points, as he helped down the Jazz 101-94 in Denver.

The Jazz (24-56) had led most of the way, but Foye played spoiler. The guard hit a 3-pointer with 7:24 left to tie the game at 74. The next trip down the court, Foye drained another one to give the Nuggets a lead they wouldn’t relinquish.

For the second game in a row, Jazz coach Ty Corbin started his five youngsters.

And for the second game in a row, the new lineup came up short.

Big man Enes Kanter led the way for Utah, scoring 22 points and grabbing 14 rebounds. Kanter needed only the first half to notch his 23rd double-double of the season. The Turkish center had 14 points and 10 rebounds at the break, helping the Jazz to a 44-34 lead.

Swingman Gordon Hayward started hot, pouring in 11 points before the midway point of the first quarter. But the young co-captain slowed after that, failing to record another field goal until 2:10 left in the game. Hayward did, however, hit nine of his 10 free throws and finished with a team-best 23 points in defeat. Poor shooting plagued both teams in the opening two quarters.

The Jazz hit on just 39 percent of their shots, while the Nuggets managed to connect on just 33 percent. The two teams combined to go 0-for-15 from 3 in the first half.

The Jazz controlled things in the early goings. After a three-point play by Kanter late in the second quarter, the Jazz held a 13-point advantage.

In the third quarter, Nuggets forward Kenneth Faried was a monster. Faried scored 13 of his 24 points and grabbed six of his 21 rebounds in the period.

The Nuggets went on a 10-0 run in the period to tie the game at 53. But the Jazz responded with a run of their own, pushing the lead back to eight. Once more, the Nuggets rallied to close the gap to a single point entering the fourth.

The Nuggets got 23 points off the bench from shooting guard Evan Fournier.

Jazz point guard Trey Burke had 12 points, eight assists and no turnovers. Forward Derrick Favors recorded a double-double with 13 points and 10 boards.

Earlier in the night, the Boston Celtics did the Jazz a favor, beating the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The win moved the Celtics to 25-55 on the year, and helped clear the way for the Jazz to own sole possession of the fourth-worst record in the league — and therefore the inside track at owning the fourth-best chance at the No. 1 pick in the June draft.

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