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Utah Jazz-Phoenix Suns: Report card

Published: Wednesday, April 4 2012 11:06 p.m. MDT

Utah coach Tyrone Corbin as the Utah Jazz and the Phoenix Suns play NBA basketball Wednesday, April 4, 2012, in Salt Lake City, Utah.  (Tom Smart, Deseret News) Utah coach Tyrone Corbin as the Utah Jazz and the Phoenix Suns play NBA basketball Wednesday, April 4, 2012, in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Tom Smart, Deseret News)

Guards: Earl Watson started in place of the injured Devin Harris, and it wasn't his best game. He played as hard as he usually does and helped out with five assists, two steals and two blocked shots, but something seemed to be missing from Utah's offense until the game's final minutes. Gordon Hayward was outstanding for the Jazz, recording his first career double-double.

Grade: B

Forwards: Paul Millsap caught fire in the fourth quarter and nearly won the game for the Jazz. He filled up the stat sheet, but his missed free throw after Nash's clear-path foul with 34.8 seconds left was costly. C.J. Miles had a big scoring night for Utah with 22 points and an overall solid game. Jared Dudley mostly contributed on defense and with hustle plays. Channing Frye's turnaround bank shot from 3-point range late in the game was ridiculously lucky.

Sun's Steve Nash hit one of his two baskets in the last minute as the Utah Jazz are defeated by the Phoenix Suns 107-105 as they play NBA basketball Wednesday, April 4, 2012, in Salt Lake City, Utah.  (Tom Smart, Deseret News) Sun's Steve Nash hit one of his two baskets in the last minute as the Utah Jazz are defeated by the Phoenix Suns 107-105 as they play NBA basketball Wednesday, April 4, 2012, in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Tom Smart, Deseret News)

Grade: B

Centers: Al Jefferson was surprisingly quiet. It was unexpected after DeMarcus Cousins torched the Suns for 41 points on Tuesday night. Jefferson only managed 16 points on 7-for-15 shooting. Marcin Gortat was more efficient than Jefferson, and was tough to stop early in the contest.

Grade: C+

Bench: The Jazz did not get their usual lift from their bench, which was outscored 46-20. Coach Tyrone Corbin played Miles, Millsap, Jefferson and Hayward at least 35 minutes apiece, so the reserves didn't get too great of a chance to make an impact. Favors was probably the best of the bunch with nine points and eight rebounds. Phoenix, meanwhile, got 19 points from Michael Redd and 11 from rookie Markieff Morris.

Sun's Steve Nash rallies his team as Utah's Paul Millsap prepares to shoot free throws in the final minute as the Utah Jazz are defeated by the Phoenix Suns 107-105 as they play NBA basketball Wednesday, April 4, 2012, in Salt Lake City, Utah.  (Tom Smart, Deseret News) Sun's Steve Nash rallies his team as Utah's Paul Millsap prepares to shoot free throws in the final minute as the Utah Jazz are defeated by the Phoenix Suns 107-105 as they play NBA basketball Wednesday, April 4, 2012, in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Tom Smart, Deseret News)

Grade: D

Overall: The Suns simply have the Jazz's number, and Nash's presence is a big reason why. Utah started too slowly, fell behind by too many points in the fourth quarter and couldn't come up with a difference-making play in the final minute. It was another costly loss for the Jazz, who are going the wrong way in the Western Conference standings.

Grade: C-

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