Notebook: Jazz 97, Timberwolves 93

Posted Feb 14, 2013 12:38 AM

Peter Kapsner, for

THE FACTS: Al Jefferson had 20 points, 11 rebounds, and a key third-quarter steal, to lead the Utah Jazz in a 97-93 defeat of the Minnesota Timberwolves at Target Center on Wednesday night. Paul Millsap added 21 points as the Jazz overcame a strong effort from the Wolves' Derrick Williams, who finished with 24 points and a career-best 16 rebounds.

THE STAT: After being outscored 16-2 over a 10:05 stretch in the first and second quarters, the Jazz went on a 16-2 run of their own and closed the first half with 32 points in the final 9:30.

QUOTABLE: "We were kind of running in the mud in the beginning of the ballgame but we played better in the second quarter. The grit that it takes to grind this game out. One thing we didn't fall to was feeling sorry for ourselves because we weren't playing. It was a great win for us going into the break."
-- Tyrone Corbin

TURNING POINT: Jefferson picked Luke Ridnour's pocket and drove for a lay-up with 2:45 left in the third quarter -- sparking a 23-7 run that put the Jazz up 81-67. The Timberwolves closed to within two with five seconds to play but ultimately could not overcome the 14-point deficit.

HOT: Ricky Rubio, on his way back from last year's season-ending ACL injury, fell one rebound shy of a triple-double to go with 18 points and 10 assists. Over his last six games, Rubio is averaging over 14 points and 10 assists -- well above his career average of 10.2 points and 8.2 assists.

NOT: The Timberwolves continued their ongoing shooting woes with a season-low 34.5 percent effort against the Jazz. The Wolves are currently 25th in the league, shooting 43.9 percent for the season.

QUOTABLE II: "I played him (Rubio) 40 minutes tonight. I'll be in trouble with the medical staff so I'm going to get out of town."
-- Rick Adelman

ROOKIE WATCH: After averaging over 26 minutes in seven February games, Timberwolves rookie Alexey Shved played a season-low 10 minutes against the Jazz. He was not injured or sick.

NOTABLE: Rubio stole the ball from Earl Watson with 30 seconds the play and the Jazz up by four. Watson recovered in time to force Rubio into an awkward miss of a fast-break lay-up. Watson was then fouled and made two free throws to put the game away. ... The Jazz scored just 10 points in the first quarter, a season-low for the opening 12 minutes. They did not attempt a free throw either. ... With the win, the Jazz are still just 4-13 on the road against Western Conference opponents. ... The loss was the Timberwolves 11th loss in the last 13 games.

UP NEXT: For the Jazz, Tuesday vs. Golden State, Saturday, Feb. 23 @ L.A. Clippers, Monday, Feb. 25 vs. Boston. For the Wolves, Wednesday vs. Philadelphia, Friday, Feb. 22 @ Oklahoma City, Sunday, Feb. 24 vs. Golden State