New Jazz formula destroys Grizzlies

They've followed the formula now for three consecutive victories while leading at the end of 12 consecutive quarters. Sixty percent shooting (or close to it). Monster games from Carlos Boozer. Contributions throughout the lineup ... even if they only go eight or nine deep.

The Jazz did it again Monday, demolishing the Memphis Grizzlies 120-93 before 18,469 at EnergySolutions Arena, while narrowly missing becoming the first team in 15 years to shoot 60 percent or better in three straight games.

They settled for 58.4 percent and a 10th consecutive victory over the Grizzlies, their longest current winning streak against any team. The Jazz led by nine after the first quarter, 13 at halftime, 25 after three quarters and as many as 32 in the fourth.

"They've destroyed a couple of teams here in their last games and we just got added to that," Memphis coach Lionel Hollins said.

Even if Memphis was missing two starters in Rudy Gay and Mike Conley, the Jazz (10-7) won for the seventh time in nine games and can close a 5-1 homestand by beating Indiana on Friday.

Boozer finished with 24 points, 15 rebounds and seven assists, coming three assists shy of a triple-double for the second consecutive game. Deron Williams overcame a slow start to score 22 points and hit three three-pointers.

"We're so talented, we've got so many guys who can do so many things, there's no reason why we shouldn't play like we have the last three games," said Ronnie Brewer, who had 25 points, one shy of his career high.

Never in their history have the Jazz shot 60 percent in three consecutive games. The last team to do so was Indiana in games Jan. 29 to Feb. 2, 1994. Had they not missed four of their last five shots in garbage time, the Jazz would have equaled the feat.

"It's a happy locker room," said Wesley Matthews, who had a career-high 17 points. "Everybody's excited. Everybody's playing the way we're capable of and we're still shorthanded. To be able to get the wins the way we are, it's a good feeling."

According to an report last summer, the Grizzlies could have traded for Boozer but instead opted to acquire Zach Randolph from the Los Angeles Clippers, even with two years and $33 million remaining on his contract.

That decision couldn't have looked worse in the first quarter. Boozer totaled 14 points, five rebounds and two assists while hitting all six shots he attempted. "He just looks so much more alive than probably any time in the last couple years," Jazz coach Jerry Sloan said.

Boozer hit one rainbow turnaround over Randolph, scored twice off the pick-and-roll with Williams, blocked Hasheem Thabeet and punctuated the quarter with a dunk as the Jazz led 31-22 after the opening 12 minutes.

"I'm very confident in my game," Boozer said. "I don't want to blow it out of proportion, but I'm having fun. I'm just playing off my teammates, trying to be that presence inside for them and get us going early, lead our team a little bit."

The Jazz traded baskets with the Grizzlies much of the second quarter, but took a 61-48 lead into halftime. Memphis called timeout with 38.1 seconds left to play the two-for-one possession game, but Marcus Williams had his pass stolen by Boozer.

At the other end, Matthews converted the turnover into a layup and three-point play, with Jamaal Tinsley trying to bearhug him on the break.

"We pride ourselves on defense and to be able to turn defense into offense -- with three points at that -- and it just demoralizes teams," Matthews said.

With Andrei Kirilenko out with a strained lower back, the Jazz were left with just nine players in uniform once again. Mehmet Okur then took a shot to his ribs when he tried to take a charge on Steven Hunter in the second quarter.

Okur was called for his third foul instead and then opened the second half on the bench. Kyrylo Fesenko took his place with the starters and finished with 11 points; Sloan said afterward that Okur sat as a result of foul trouble as opposed to injury.

Okur did come off the bench in the third quarter to hit a three-pointer before being called for his fourth foul. Matthews also pulled his left hip when Fesenko stepped on his foot. He briefly headed to the locker room but said he was fine afterward.

"Booz is playing out of his mind right now," Williams said. "Hopefully, he keeps it up, but we need everyone else to play good as well. Ronnie came in and had a great night tonight. Wes came ready to play. ... We need everybody clicking at the same time." Storylines

IN SHORT ? The Jazz rolled to their third straight double-digit victory, drilling the Grizzlies 120-93.

KEY STAT ? The Jazz have won their last three games by 19, 16 and 27 while shooting a combined 59.9 percent.

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Author: Fox Sports
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Added: December 2, 2009