Utah 99, Dallas 90
Game 69: Friday at Reunion Arena... 1st 2nd 3rd 4th
Jazz 25 27 25 22 - 99
Mavs 11 23 22 24 - 90
1st quarter: Dallas opened up with six straight points before the Jazz dominated the rest of the quarter. Karl Malone led Utah on a 20-2 run and it was never close again. The Mavericks were 4-for-17 shooting for the period.
2nd quarter: Utah native Shawn Bradley, who didn't play at all in the opening quarter, posted this line for Dallas: 0-4 from the field, no points, one rebound, four fouls two turnovers and one technical. The Mavs shoot better, but the Jazz lead by 18 at the half.
3rd quarter: Malone scores a dozen points and the Jazz open up a 21-point advantage. A.C. Green nets eight in the period for the Mavericks.
4th quarter: With the starters on the bench, Utah's lead starts to dwindle. The Jazz starters are forced to return. The Mavs cut the lead to five late as the game becomes extra physical. Six technical fouls are whistled in the period alone. Utah finally survives.
Who's hot: Malone. He finished with 33 points on 10-of-15 from the field and 13-of-16 from the foul line. He also pulled down 14 rebounds.
Key to the game: The Jazz had a big enough lead through three quarters (21 points) that they could play poorly in the fourth - turning the ball over 11 times - and still manage to win.
Records: Jazz 52-17; Mavs 18-53
Quotable: "It was a very physical game. Sometimes when it's physical like that, emotion can get flared up." Dallas guard Erick Strickland.
Notable: Malone's 33 points for the game gives him 27,409 for his career, which ties him with Moses Malone for fourth place on the NBA's all-time scoring list. He now trails only Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Wilt Chamberlain and Michael Jordan. . . . Antoine Carr missed his fourth consecutive game due to his sore right hamstring. He's also going to miss tonight's game. He tried to play on it during Friday morning's shootaround, but it was hurting again, so he'll have a couple of more days of rest. . . . Adam Keefe missed the morning shootaround, but arrived in time to start the game. He had been with relatives in Southern California following a death of his grandfather. Keefe also issued an apology for his disparaging remarks about one of the Jazz sponsors, The Salt Lake Brewing Company. He and his wife had a bad experience at the restaurant and he mentioned it live on the air during a post-game television interview on Tuesday night. "I regret the entire incident. I apologize that I didn't handle it in a more professional manner." . . . The Jazz have now won 22 of 24 games and are 14-1 in March. They in a virtual tie with Seattle for the best record in the conference, actually percentage points ahead of the Sonics.
Next Up: Los Angeles Lakers vs. Jazz, tonight, 7 p.m. at the Delta Center.