SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Jazz, which came into Friday night's game against Denver with a five-game winning streak, used a 22-10 run in the final 6 1/2 minutes of the second quarter to grab a 63-55 halftime lead over the Nuggets at EnergySolutions Arena.
Al Jefferson scored 13 first-half points for Utah (25-22), while Devin Harris had 10 with four assists. C.J. Miles added nine points, Derrick Favors eight, Alec Burks seven and Gordon Hayward and foul-plagued Paul Millsap chipped in with six points apiece for the Jazz, who shot a blistering 61.5 percent from the field in the first half.
Hayward and Favors each had five rebounds in the first half for Utah, which trailed 45-41 with 6:46 to go before halftime. Miles, Jefferson and Harris fueled Utah's late first-half run, as Miles hit an 18-foot jumper, drove for a dunk and hit a pair of free throws; Jefferson had a couple of slams and a short jumper, and Harris hit a pair of 3-pointers, both of them in the last 1:47 of the half.
The Jazz led by as many as 11 points, 63-52, late in the first half before former University of Utah star Andre Miller nailed a 3-pointer with 38.6 seconds left to bring the Nuggets back within eight at halftime.
Aaron Alfalo scored 12 first-half points, while reserve JaVale McGee had 10 and Al Harrington had nine more off the bench for the Nuggets (26-21), who entered Friday's contest one game ahead of Utah in the Western Conference playoff race.