Boozer leads Utah comeback win over Portland

Published February 22, 2010

| AP

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Carlos Boozer scored on an offensive putback at the end of regulation to force overtime, then gave Utah its first lead since the opening minutes, and the Jazz rallied from down 25 in the third quarter to stun the Portland Trail Blazers 93-89 in overtime on Sunday night.

Down 64-39 with 7 minutes left in the third quarter, Utah staged a shocking rally by outscoring the Blazers 44-19 over the final 19 minutes to send what seemed like a sure Portland win into overtime. Boozer then scored underneath with 3:05 left in OT to give Utah a 87-86 lead and its first lead since it was 9-8.

Boozer finished with 22 points and a career-best 23 rebounds.

Moments later, after a Brandon Roy miss, Boozer slipped an interior pass to Kyrylo Fesenko for a dunk and a three-point lead. Deron Williams added an arching jumper over the long arms of Marcus Camby and Utah managed to pull out its seventh consecutive road victory.

Roy led Portland with 23 points, but the Blazers made just four of their final 27 shots in the fourth quarter and overtime. Camby grabbed 18 rebounds.

Utah swept the four-game season series with Portland, but this victory could be the most impressive considering what the Jazz were missing. Mehmet Okur missed his second straight game after the birth of his child and Andrei Kirilenko left in the first half with back spasms.

But Boozer was more than able to carry the load. He grabbed 16 rebounds in the second half and OT, his most important coming after Williams missed from 19 feet with three seconds left in regulation. The rebound eluded Camby and fell to Boozer who hooked the right-handed attempt off the glass and end to silence the stunned Rose Garden.

Roy opened the extra session with a 3-pointer, but Portland missed its next four shots before Rudy Fernandez's 3-pointer with 23 seconds left cut the deficit to 91-89. Boozer made 1 of 2 free throws with 12 seconds left giving Portland one last chance.

Roy's attempt over Williams rimmed out and C.J. Miles grabbed the rebound and hit one free throw to secure the win. Williams finished with 18 points and 12 assists.

Portland seemed to have victory secured with a 14-1 spurt to start the second half and took its biggest lead at 25 on a LaMarcus Aldridge dunk. Utah again went more than five minutes without a basket after watching Portland run off a 17-1 run in the first half.

Eventually, the Jazz started chipping away and pulled within 10 after scoring the first four points of the fourth quarter.

The lead continued to diminish as Utah's bench started to produce and Portland went cold, going more than seven minutes without a field goal. By the time Andre Miller scored on a scoop shot in the lane with 4:54 left, the Blazers lead was down to six.

Utah closed to 82-79 on Kyle Korver's second 3-pointer of the fourth quarter. Roy added a free throw, and Utah had a chance to draw closer, but Marcus Camby swatted Boozer's shot in the lane — Camby's fourth block — and Portland then held possession for nearly a minute thanks to offensive rebounds by Camby and Aldridge.

Roy eventually missed a tough 16-footer and Williams made two free throws with 30 seconds left to get within 83-81. Nicolas Batum got a clear look at a 3-pointer that rimmed out with 7 seconds left and Utah grabbed the rebound, calling timeout with 5.4 remaining.

Williams missed, but Boozer was there to clean up.

Miller added 17 points and Batum had 14 points for Portland, all coming in the first half. The Blazers have lost two straight at home after a 20-point rout by Boston on Friday.

NOTES: Boozer's previous career high in rebounds was 21, set three times, most recently against the Blazers in 2007. Camby has 25 rebounds in his two games with Portland. ... Okur could be back for Monday's game at home against Atlanta.

URL

http://www.foxnews.com/sports/2010/02/22/boozer-leads-utah-comeback-win-portland