SALT LAKE CITY (AP)—Mehmet Okur felt like he couldn’t miss and was nearly right.
Okur scored a career-high 43 points for Utah as the Jazz beat Indiana 120-113 Monday night, holding off a late push by the Pacers after they rallied from a 20-point deficit.
Okur made 13 of 19 shots, going 3-for-4 on 3-pointers, and was 14-for-15 from the foul line while leading Utah to its fourth straight win.
“I felt like one of those nights I wasn’t going to miss,” said Okur, the 6-foot-11 center who is the Jazz’s top 3-point threat. “I took what they gave me. They gave me open shots and I took it.”
Kirilenko and Williams combined to score the Jazz’s last 15 points, including a 3-pointer with 1:25 left by Williams that just beat the shot clock and helped the Jazz finally clinch the win.
Indiana was the third straight opponent to come to Utah after playing on the road the previous night. The Hornets and Pistons both wilted when the Jazz pulled away to big leads in the previous two games, but the Pacers continued to push and made it a game again with a 16-0 run midway through the second half.
“We had a little slip-up. Any time you play a team like this, they’re a risk of scoring a lot of points in a hurry,” Williams said. “They shoot a lot of ‘3s.’ If they get hot, three points adds up.”
Indiana’s Danny Granger had 30 points and seven assists, one night after tying his career high with 42 points in a loss at Golden State.
“We let them get such a big lead that we were fighting back the whole time,” said Granger, who was 6-for-7 from 3-point range.
Indiana’s reserves outscored Utah’s 46-9, but the Pacers couldn’t stop Okur as he made 12 of his first 14 shots. His previous career high was 38, set in January 2007 at Washington.
“He had a great game,” Indiana coach Jim O’Brien said. “It’s tough to double-team somebody on the 3-point line. It’s very hard to do that.”
Okur tied his career high on a free throw with 5:09 left in the third, then made the second to give him 39 points. He added a 22-footer to put Utah up 96-76 with 3:46 remaining in the period, but that was the last time Utah scored for the next six minutes.
Travis Diener hit a 3-pointer and Granger converted on a three-point play to start a 16-0 run over the end of the third through early in the fourth to get within 96-92 on Murphy’s two free throws with 10:36 left to play.
Kirilenko finally ended Utah’s scoring drought with two from the foul line with 9:32 to go and Williams followed with a jumper to get Utah to 100-92.
The Pacers still didn’t go away and cut the lead to 109-106 on a 3-pointer by Dunleavy after Indiana got three offensive rebounds on the same possession.
Indiana had another chance after getting within 113-103 on a 3-pointer by Jarrett Jack, but Williams came through with a 3-pointer just before the shot clock was about to expire. The shot put Utah up 116-109 with 1:25 remaining and the Jazz held on from there.
“After we got them down, they just kept playing,” Utah coach Jerry Sloan said. “I think we have to give them a lot of credit for the way they hung in the ballgame after they played last night.”
Utah’s four-game winning streak is one off the season high. … Utah F Paul Millsap missed the game with a bruised right knee. … Rasho Nesterovic scored 12 points and Jeff Foster added 11 for the Pacers.