Burks plays great solo, Jazz de-tune Blazers
April 26, 2012, 6:13 pm
The Blazers were in Salt Lake City, and hoped to close out what can only be described as a disappointing season with a win against the Utah Jazz.
The first quarter did not start good for Portland. The Blazers shot 0-6 from three-point range, and 38 percent from the field as a team. The Jazz led by as many as nine points, and took a seven point lead into the second quarter, 23-16. J.J. Hickson was the leader in the first period for Portland, scoring eight points. Derrick Favors added eight points of his own for Utah.
The Blazers used a 7-0 run in the second quarter to tie the game at 27, but the Jazz regained the lead almost as quickly as they lost it, and went into halftime leading by seven points, 47-40. Wesley Matthews hit Portland's only two three-point baskets in the first half. Three-point sharpshooter Luke Babbitt was ice cold in the first half, going 0-5, and 0-4 from three-point range. The Blazers were 2-12 as a team from beyond the arc in the first half. J.J. Hickson was the only player to get to double figures, scoring ten points.
Nolan Smith scored 12 points in the third quarter, and J.J. Hickson added eight points in the quarter to help the Blazers close the gap in the third quarter.
The Blazers scored 35 points in the period to head into the final quarter down by just three points, 78-75.
The Blazers played tough in the final period, taking the lead three separate times in the quarter. The Jazz used a 10-0 run to open up a six point lead with about two minutes remaining in the period. The Blazers stood their ground, and brought the deficit to just two points. With 2.9 seconds remaining in the quarter, Wesley Matthews would have the final shot to try and give the Blazers a win.
Matthews miss gave the Jazz a 96-94 win. Alec Burks scored a season-high 18 points, and four other Utah players scored in double figures. J.J. Hickson led the way for Portland with 20 points and nine rebounds. Johnny Flynn added 18 points of his own, along with 11 assists. Three other Blazer players scored in double figures as well. Luke Babbitt had a disappointing night, scoring only seven points on 1-8 shooting.
The Blazers finish the 2011-2012 season with a record of 28-38.
The Blazers now transition into the most important offseason in recent memory. Priorities include filling the vacant GM position, finding a new head coach, and determining if the team will resign Nicolas Batum.
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