TORONTO (AP)—Struggling to wake up when the game began, the Utah Jazz were wide-eyed and ready to go once the fourth quarter arrived.
Williams said it was difficult to prepare for the 12:30 p.m. tip-off after flying two time zones east and losing another hour of sleep after the clocks were moved ahead for the switch to Eastern Daylight Time.
“It’s different,” Williams said. “I was on the taping table laying down and I fell asleep. That was like 15 minutes before the game, so I was out of it.”
Kyle Korver matched a season-high with 20 points despite a fitful, and brief, night of rest.
“Getting up in the morning kind of stinks,” Korver said. “But once you finally get up, you start going, you have your energy drink and eat your breakfast it’s like another game.”
The Jazz usually practice at 10:00 a.m. at home, but early mornings don’t often agree with Korver.
“It’s terrible,” he said. “I don’t even like going to practice in the morning. I would rather practice at midnight. I think all our sleep patterns were kind of messed up last night.”
Utah matched its longest winning streak since an 11-game run from April 1-18, 1999.
“I like the feeling,” Jazz coach Jerry Sloan said. “We weathered a lot of the storm to try and hang in there. Now if we can keep everybody together and keep everybody happy I think we’ll be competitive down the stretch.”
Anthony Parker scored 16 points but Toronto still lost its fifth straight.
Coming up short against the league’s hottest team was little consolation to a downcast Bosh.
“I don’t really care to define a loss anymore,” Bosh said. “A loss is a loss, I just move on. It really doesn’t matter who we play, we’re just trying to win games. We’ve had so many opportunities where we could have turned a corner, but it just didn’t happen. We just have to get off this skid right now.”
Bosh scored 15 in the third quarter and the Raptors took an 87-81 lead into the fourth. But after a Jason Kapono jumper to begin the quarter, Kirilenko scored six straight points to bring the Jazz back.
“In the fourth quarter we started playing more aggressive defensively and helping each other a little bit better,” Kirilenko said. “That’s why we got the lead.”
Utah took the lead for good with 6:33 remaining. A mad scramble for a loose ball that lasted half the court led to a jump ball, but Toronto’s Joey Graham tapped it straight to Kirilenko, who ran off untouched for the go-ahead layup.
“I was kind of ready for it,” Kirilenko said. “For some reason I was feeling he would win the jump ball. I tried to read where he was going to throw it and I began to sprint right away.”
Utah outscored Toronto 28-14 in the fourth, holding the Raptors to 6-for-19 shooting.
“We did a great job of closing out the ballgame, getting defensive stops, having a lot of energy and showing hustle,” Williams said. “The things you need to win ballgames, we did tonight.”
Millsap started for Jazz forward Carlos Boozer, who missed the game with a sore right ankle. Boozer hopes to play Tuesday when the Jazz visit Indiana.
Boozer returned to the lineup on Feb. 23 after missing 44 games because of a strained quadriceps tendon and left knee surgery. He is averaging 16.9 points and 10.9 rebounds in 18 games.
Bargnani started 3-for-4 but picked up his second foul at 6:06 of the first and had to spend the rest of the quarter on the bench. Utah led 29-26 after one.
After scoring seven points in the first, Korver had eight more in the second for Utah, but Graham came off the bench to score seven for the Raptors as Toronto pulled to within 49-48 at the half.
Bosh picked up a technical for arguing a foul call late in the first. … Toronto held its opponent below 50 first-half points for the first time in eight games. … Utah’s bench outscored Toronto’s 38-17. … The Jazz are 12-17 on the road.