Williams leads Jazz in rout of NetsNov 20, 2007 - 5:40 AM By Chris Bellamy PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer
SALT LAKE CITY (Ticker) - A return home was all the Utah Jazz needed to get things back on track - that, and a New Jersey squad without its most explosive scorer.
Deron Williams scored 20 points and dished out six assists and Carlos Boozer added 17 points and six rebounds as the Jazz snapped their two-game skid with a resounding 102-75 victory over the Vince Carter-less Nets.
"It was great," Boozer said. "We forgot about those two games we had on the road. That's one of the good things about this team is we're able to move forward pretty good."
New Jersey's superstar guard missed his fifth straight game with a sprained right ankle he suffered in a loss to the Boston Celtics on November 10. In his absence, the Nets were no match for the Jazz, who were coming off a 1-2 Eastern Conference road trip and had surrendered 40 points to Cleveland's LeBron James and 25 to Indiana's Mike Dunleavy in consecutive nights.
"It definitely feels good to get home and get the crowd behind us to get back headed in the right direction. I thought we came out and from the start we were able to do what we wanted to," Williams said. "We were able to get out in transition and run and establish that. We were able to get stops when we needed it. And our energy level was a lot better."
Monday night, it was the Jazz who had gone three straight games without reaching the 100-point mark who asserted themselves on the offensive end.
"I saw a different energy than what I saw the last two games," Jazz coach Jerry Sloan said. "I think I have a right to expect that every night."
After Richard Jefferson's 15-point first half kept the game close early on, Utah took firm control once the second-half whistle blew.
Second-year guard Ronnie Brewer found an open Carlos Boozer under the basket for an easy layup on the opening possession of the third quarter, and scored a layup of his own just 30 seconds later to help ignite a 13-2 run that turned a modest 10-point edge into a decisive 64-43 advantage.
"We dropped the ball a little bit at the end of the second (quarter), let them get a little bit of momentum. Third quarter, I was happy with how we came out and got back focused," Williams said. "The defense was there again."
Williams, who had a subpar showing during the team's road trip, broke out of his mini-slump, was a key component as Utah's lead ballooned to as high as 25.
Midway through the third, Williams scored six points in a matter of 35 seconds. He got it done from the outside, burying his second 3-pointer of the night at the 5:49 mark, and then went inside on the following possession, driving in the lane and completing a three-point play to increase Utah's lead to 73-52.
Williams, who shot just 28 percent (7-for-25) during the Jazz's two-game losing streak, led an efficient Utah offense that shot 52 percent (35-of-67) from the floor. He asserted himself quickly, scoring seven points and dishing out a pair of assists in the opening quarter.
Brewer added 14 points, six assists and five steals for the Jazz. He is now averaging 2.67 steals per game - second in the NBA behind New Orleans' Chris Paul. The Nets' 75 points were also a season-low for a Jazz opponent.
"We just wanted to go out there and play solid with a lot of help defense - get in the passing lanes, make them take tough shots," Brewer said. "If we did that, we knew we could hold them to a lower percentage, and it was going to lead to fast breaks."
The Nets, who have lost all five games since Carter's injury and six in a row overall, got preciously little offensive production outside of Jefferson, who finished with 22. Jason Kidd had eight assists but was just 1-of-9 from the field for two points.
"Right now, teams are taking turns handing out ass-whoopings to us," Jefferson said. "We're playing well for a quarter, then falling apart for a quarter. We're struggling right now. It's unfortunate because we have a good team, a quality team."
"Obviously they're missing Vince a great deal. I mean, that's 25 points," Boozer said. "He's a big part of this team. Having a player like that out can definitely damage your offense."
NEW JERSEY 75
UTAH 102 FINAL
Nov 19 11:25 PM
NEW JERSEY 58
UTAH 83 END, 3RD QTR
Nov 19 10:52 PM
NEW JERSEY 41
UTAH 51 HALFTIME
Nov 19 10:06 PM
NEW JERSEY 17
UTAH 30 END, 1ST QTR
Nov 19 9:36 PM
- NBA draft returning to Brooklyn's Barclays Center May 18
- After long overseas career, Nets coach Atkinson back in NY May 16
- Russia bans 24 basketball players in gambling case May 13
- New Jazz uniforms include sleeved alternate jersey May 12
- Utah Jazz extend contract of coach Quin Snyder May 6
- Celtics' president Ainge embracing expectation-filled summer May 4
- Optimism high as Celtics enter a likely active offseason Apr 29
- Nets hire Hawks assistant Kenny Atkinson as new coach Apr 17
- Company of Russian owner of Brooklyn Nets searched in Moscow Apr 15
- Jazz disappointed to miss playoffs, but gain experience Apr 14
- Tough season and more tough times ahead for the Nets Apr 14
- Kobe scores 60 points in unbelievable farewell victory Apr 14