Boozer Hums as Jazz Jolt Timberwolves
Utah 103, Minnesota 95
MINNEAPOLIS, April 7 (Ticker) -- Carlos Boozer and the Utah Jazz took care of business against the Minnesota Timberwolves for the final time this season.
Boozer scored 30 points and grabbed nine rebounds as the Jazz pulled away in the fourth quarter for a 103-95 victory over the Timberwolves.
"Carlos is playing pretty strong," Utah coach Jerry Sloan said. "He should probably start to be about at the level he's playing at now after being out for a long period of time. He's finding a rhythm. He played extremely well tonight. He's played extremely well for a couple weeks now."
"We don't have a good chance (to make the playoffs), it's a bad chance," said Andrei Kirilenko, who had six points, seven boards and seven assists. "But we have a chance, which is good. We have to win a lot of games, but we still feel like we can do it."
Leading, 79-76, the Jazz started the final quarter with an 8-2 burst capped by a layup by Boozer with 9:03 remaining. Utah was in control throughout the period en route to capturing the third of the four meetings with the Timberwolves this season.
Boozer made 13-of-23 shots and Mehmet Okur added 19 points and 13 rebounds. Matt Harpring and Devin Brown chipped in 13 points apiece.
"We're just trying to stay alive," Utah rookie guard Deron Williams said. "We're going to play 'til they tell us we can't play anymore."
Justin Reed had 18 points, rookie Rashad McCants added 17 and All-Star Kevin Garnett 14 with 13 rebounds despite sitting out the entire fourth quarter for Minnesota.
"(Coach Dwane Casey) told me that I have going to drop minutes and so other guys would have to be ready," Garnett said. "So it wasn't like it was out of the blue. He's the coach. I do what the coach tells me. I can't even remember the last time I played only 24 minutes."
"That's what it is going to be like for the rest of the year," Casey said. "Developing young players and letting them learn in game situations. It was tough on the fans, but we have to get our young players ready for next year and the future."