Okur leads Jazz over Nuggets 132-105
SALT LAKE CITY – Mehmet Okur made a career-high six 3-pointers, scoring 27 and adding 11 rebounds as the Utah Jazz added a game to their lead over Denver by routing the Nuggets 132-105 on Saturday night. Carlos Boozer had 23 points and 11 rebounds and Deron Williams had his seventh straight double-double with 16 assists and 14 points. Utah won its 18th straight home game, one off the team record, and extended its lead over the Nuggets in the Northwest Division to four games. Allen Iverson scored 28 and Carmelo added 24 points for the Nuggets, who fell to 1-2 against Utah this season. The Nuggets have 20 games left to try to catch the Jazz, including another meeting in Utah on April 12. The Jazz will have a hard time topping this one. Utah led 108-75 at the end of the fourth quarter and didn’t slow down much in the fourth as the reserves played the final minutes. The Jazz outran the Suns 126-118 in Phoenix on Friday and kept up the pace against the Nuggets. Okur made his first six 3-pointers for a career high and finished 6-for-7. Kyle Korver and C.J. Miles added two 3-pointers each as the Jazz went 11-for-15 from beyond-the-arc.Korver scored 12, Paul Millsap had 16 points and 10 rebounds and Matt Harpring scored 10 for the Jazz, who went 50-for-83 from the field.Denver shot 50 percent in the first half, yet trailed by 23 at halftime after the Jazz made 15 of 21 shots and scored 43 in the second quarter. The Jazz were 6-for-7 from 3-point range as Okur hit all four of his attempts. Utah also got two bonus points because of technical fouls on Anthony and Linas Kleiza as the Nuggets lost their composure.Anthony got an offensive foul with just 22 seconds left when he elbowed Korver in the jaw. It got even worse for the Nuggets when Anthony Carter was called for a flagrant foul when he stopped Boozer from getting a layup. Kleiza complained and was called for a technical. Korver made the technical free throw and Boozer went 1-for-2, giving the Jazz a 77-54 halftime lead.Denver only fell further behind in the third as the Jazz continued to shoot well. At the end of the third, Okur had hit all six of his 3-pointers, including one with 6:09 left in the period to give Utah a 95-58 lead. The Jazz passed 100 points with 2:39 left in the period when Boozer’s putback gave Utah a 101-67 lead.Utah led 108-75 at the end of the third and there wasn’t much anticipation in the fourth. Utah’s starters were on the bench for the last 4 minutes and Denver’s had left the game long before that.J.R. Smith scored 16 and Linas Kleiza had 14 points for Denver.Notes: Iverson scored half of Denver’s 26 points in the first quarter. … Kenyon Martin did not return after taking an elbow from Okur about 9 minutes into the game. The Nuggets said later the Martin had a mild concussion. … Okur’s previous high for 3-pointers in a game was five, set against Memphis in January. … Utah tied a team record with eight 3-pointers in the first half. … Utah played its third straight game without F Andrei Kirilenko (hip).
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