Memphis (8-13) at Utah (15-6)

By NICOLINO DIBENEDETTO, STATS Writer Monday, Dec 6, 2010 Tipoff: 9:00 pm EST Mon Dec 6, 2010

Looking to start another winning streak, the Utah Jazz appear to be in ideal position with a visit from the Memphis Grizzlies.

The Jazz look to continue their dominance of the Grizzlies in Salt Lake City when the teams open their season series Monday night.

Utah (15-6) saw its season-high seven-game winning streak come to an end Friday, when the Jazz shot 39.2 percent in a 93-81 loss to Dallas.

“We’re still one of the best teams,” said guard Deron Williams(notes), who had 12 points - tying his season low - and seven assists. “This is one of those nights. Things didn’t go our way. The Mavericks played better than us.”

Williams had been playing much better in recent contests, averaging 25.4 points and 11.6 in his five previous games. He leads the Jazz with a career-best 21.6 points per game and 10.0 assists. He’s missed Utah’s last two meetings with the Grizzlies, but averaged 23.0 points and 11.0 assists in the previous three.

Paul Millsap(notes) had a team-high 21 points with seven rebounds and two blocked shots in Friday’s loss. Millsap, who is a full-time starter this season for the first time in his career, has averaged 16.7 points, 9.3 rebounds and shot 60.0 percent in three games versus the Grizzlies as a starter - all victories for Utah.

Hosting Memphis (8-13) could help Williams, Millsap and the rest of the Jazz bounce back quickly. Utah has won six straight home meetings with the Grizzlies by an average of 19.8 points. The Jazz are 23-6 all-time at home versus Memphis.

They also had an 11-game winning streak in the overall series before a 91-89 loss at Memphis on Jan. 8, when O.J. Mayo(notes) scored the deciding basket with 5.2 seconds to play.

Mayo has averaged 19.4 points in seven career games against Utah, but may not be as much of a factor this time. Now a reserve instead of a starter, the Grizzlies guard has scored three points in each of the last two games. He hit 1 of 4 shots in Sunday’s 108-107 loss at Denver - Memphis’ third consecutive defeat.

Mayo was averaging 14.5 points as a starter in the first 13 games of the season.

Rudy Gay(notes), Memphis’ leader with 21.7 points per game, has been a bright spot during the Grizzlies’ slide to start the month, averaging 25.3 points on 52.0 percent shooting in the three losses. The forward had 22 points against the Jazz in January, and is averaging 13.5 in 13 career meetings with Utah.

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