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Jazz-Blazers: Report card

Published: Wednesday, July 1 2015 9:50 a.m. MDT

Utah Jazz guard Alec Burks, right, loses his balance driving to the basket against Portland Trail Blazers guard Raymond Felton during the first quarter of their NBA basketball game in Portland, Ore., Monday, April 2, 2012.  (Don Ryan, Associated Press) Utah Jazz guard Alec Burks, right, loses his balance driving to the basket against Portland Trail Blazers guard Raymond Felton during the first quarter of their NBA basketball game in Portland, Ore., Monday, April 2, 2012. (Don Ryan, Associated Press)

PORTLAND — Paul Millsap led the Jazz (28-25) to a an inconsistent but comeback-themed 102-97 win over Portland (25-29) Monday night in Oregon. Former Jazz swingman Wesley Matthews scored 33 points to lead the Blazers.

Guards: Devin Harris provided nine points and four assists in nearly 14 minutes, but Earl Watson's 0-of-5 effort in less than 17 mintes wasn't much worse than Jamaal Tinsley's 1-of-4 shooting in 18. However, Tinsley provided six dimes. Hayward's 20 points (on 6-of-12 shooting) in 40 minutes didn't quite match the 33 that Wesley Matthews scored in the same amount of time. At least Portland's Raymond Felton shot 2-of-10, though he offset that with nine rebounds and eight assists. GRADE: C+

Forwards: C.J. Miles may have started, but he played just seven minutes, his lowest total since a four-minute contest at Golden State on Jan. 7. It was Derrick Favors who played starter's minutes, logging 35 while notching a double-double with 11 points and 11 rebounds. Millsap gave one of his finest performances of the season with 31 points on 14-of-20 shooting and 11 rebounds, though his Portland counterpart LaMarcus Aldridge scored 27 points on 11-of-22 shooting. Millsap tied his high point total for the season. GRADE: B+

Utah Jazz center Al Jefferson, right, drives to the basket against Portland Trail Blazers center Joel Przybilla during the first quarter of their NBA basketball game in Portland, Ore., Monday, April 2, 2012.  (Don Ryan, Associated Press) Utah Jazz center Al Jefferson, right, drives to the basket against Portland Trail Blazers center Joel Przybilla during the first quarter of their NBA basketball game in Portland, Ore., Monday, April 2, 2012. (Don Ryan, Associated Press)

Centers: With Millsap doing so much of the offensive damage inside, Al Jefferson took a back seat with 13 points, shooting just 6-of-17. However, with 10 rebounds, he far out-played Joel Przybilla, who went scoreless with three rebounds in 22 minutes. Jefferson's point total was his lowest since a March 15 win over Minnesota, 10 games ago. GRADE: C

Bench: The Utah bench outscored the Portland reserves 25-17 on poor overall play from both sides, led by Favors' 11. No one else scored more than six (Alec Burks, on 2-of-8 shooting). The Blazers' leading bench man for the game, J.J. Hickson, shot just 2-of-8 and had problems with Millsap and Favors, who shot 5-of-7. It was a refreshing bounce back offensively for Favors, who shot just 6-of-32 in the previous four games. Overall, Utah's bench shot just 10-of-26 from the field, though the Blazers were worse at 6-of-19. GRADE: C-

Overall: Millsap, Hayward and Favors gave the Jazz enough firepower to carry the rest of the club. Outside of those three, Utah shot just 16-of-45 (35.6 percent). Outside shooting remained a problem, as the team shot just 4-of-15 from 3-point land. They remained poor from the perimeter defensively, allowing Portland to shoot 12-of-22. Give the Jazz credit, however, for a road win after rallying from a double-digit deficit after the first quarter. The second and third periods couldn't have been much better. GRADE: C+

Utah Jazz forward Paul Milsap, left, shoots against Portland Trail Blazers forward LaMarcus Aldridge during the first quarter of their NBA basketball game in Portland, Ore., Monday, April 2, 2012.  (Don Ryan, Associated Press) Utah Jazz forward Paul Milsap, left, shoots against Portland Trail Blazers forward LaMarcus Aldridge during the first quarter of their NBA basketball game in Portland, Ore., Monday, April 2, 2012. (Don Ryan, Associated Press)

Rhett Wilkinson majoring in communications and political science at Utah State University. He has previously been an intern for the Deseret News. He can be reached at rhett.wilkinson@yahoo.com or at Twitter: wilklogan

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