Nelson Helps Magic Edge Jazz in Overtime
Orlando 114, Utah 108 (OT)
ORLANDO, Fla., March 15 (Ticker) -- Jameer Nelson and the Orlando Magic made the Utah Jazz's trip to the Sunshine State one to forget.
Nelson scored 25 points to lead five starters in double figures as the Magic edged the Jazz in overtime with a 114-108 victory.
"We have to play hard and not let teams intimidate us in the first quarter like Miami and Orlando did," said Utah forward Andrei Kirilenko, who collected 21 points, nine rebounds, seven assists and four blocks. "You have to keep chasing and chasing. Finally in the fourth quarter when you've got them, you have no energy."
A jumper by Matt Harpring gave Utah a 107-106 lead before Tony Battie - who scored a season-high 19 points - answered with a jumper. Nelson followed with a baseline jumper to give Orlando a 110-107 edge with 27 seconds remaining.
Dwight Howard netted two foul shots with 11 seconds remaining to secure the win.
"It was a great look," said Nelson, who added nine assists. "That's my range right there and that's my shot. If we had lost the game, the nine assists and how many points I'd score would have been out the window. But because we won, it was exciting."
"Tony had a great offensive game," said Jazz forward Carlos Boozer, who scored a season-high 30 points and pulled down 10 rebounds. "He hit some big shots. I'm not sure how many rebounds he ended up with, but it seemed like he was all over the place."
Nelson made 10-of-17 shots and committed just one turnover. Hedo Turkoglu scored 20 points and Howard collected 16 and 11 rebounds for the Magic, who have won three of four after a six-game losing streak.
"Nelson did a great job keeping us off balance," Utah coach Jerry Sloan said. "I thought his play was terrific. He's strong ... he can score, he was able to get people the basketball and help them get the kinds of shots they wanted. That's one of the big things that hurt us."
After Nelson sank two foul shots to put Orlando in front, 98-96, with 1:38 remaining in regulation, Boozer converted a follow shot to even the score 23 seconds later.
Howard and Harpring each split a pair of free throws for a 99-99 tie with 35 ticks to go. Nelson's wing jumper rattled in and out to force the extra session.
"We knew we were going to get one of two things," Magic coach Brian Hill said. "We ran the play earlier and Jameer penetrated and had Hedo wide open behind the line. I wanted either one of those two guys taking the shot at the end of the game."
Mehmet Okur scored 30 points and grabbed 11 boards for the Jazz, who fell to 0-2 on their four-game road trip.
"Coming off last night's game, we really didn't want to go into an overtime game on a back-to-back," said Harpring, who scored 18 points. "We had our chances. We missed free throws and didn't close out on some shooters. You can't give open jump shots coming down the stretch."
"We played hard, but we just seemed to stub our toe every time we got something going," Sloan added. "We would make a mistake and let them have the kind of shots they can make. That cost us the ballgame."