SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Jazz battled back from a 14-point deficit early in the second quarter to catch the Orlando Magic at halftime, 55-all, Saturday night at EnergySolutions Arena.
Utah trailed 43-29 with 8 1/2 minutes remaining in the first half before outscoring Orlando 26-12 over the final 8-plus minutes of the half. A steal by Jamaal Tinsley led to a fast-break dunk by Alec Burks to tie it at 55 with 8.7 seconds remaining before the halftime buzzer.
Al Jefferson scored 11 first-half points for Utah (33-30), which would clinch a playoff spot by winning its final three games of the regular season. Paul Millsap added 10 points and Derrick Favors contributed eight off the bench, with Burks scoring seven more.
For Orlando (36-26), playing without star big man Dwight Howard, Jason Richardson scored 15 first-half points, Jameer Nelson had 13 and Ryan Anderson added 10 more, including a 3-pointer that gave the Magic a 55-53 lead within the final minute of the first half.