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Utah 92, Brooklyn 90

The SportsXchange

NEW YORK -- Mo Williams scored 19 points, including a clutch 3-pointer midway through the fourth quarter that gave his team the lead for good, and the Utah Jazz came from behind to topple the Brooklyn Nets 92-90 Tuesday.

The Nets blew a double-digit, first-half lead en route to a loss for the sixth time this season. Brooklyn led by 13 at halftime.

The Jazz (14-12) lost their previous two games. The visit to Brooklyn was the beginning a four-game road trip. The Nets (13-11) lost for the seventh time in their past nine games.

Five Utah players reached double figures. Other than Williams, the Jazz received 16 points and 11 rebounds from Al Jefferson and 13 from former Nets forward Derrick Favors. Paul Milsap added 12, and Marvin Williams had 11 points and 10 rebounds for the Jazz.

The Nets were led by Joe Johnson, who had 21 points, and Brook Lopez, who had 16. Deron Williams, the former Jazz All-Star who was critical of the Nets' style of play prior to the game, had 14 points but shot just 5-for-12 from the floor, including two crucial misses down the stretch. Williams is now 0-3 against his former team.

The Jazz used a 7-0 run with about five minutes left to take the lead for good. Gordon Hayward had two free throws to cut the Jazz's deficit to 80-79, and then Williams nailed a 3-pointer with 5:34 left that put Utah in front for good. Favors' slam dunk pushed the lead to 84-79.

The Nets had a chance to win or tie in the closing seconds. Gerald Wallace missed a wide-open 3-pointer that would have won it, and Reggie Evans missed a fall-away shot off the glass as the buzzer sounded.

The Jazz managed to take a 30-29 lead on a wide-open dunk by DeMarre Carroll with 9:09 left in the second quarter. The advantage was short lived, though, as Johnson nailed a jumper to start a 14-2 Brooklyn run. Johnson scored seven of the 14 in the stretch that gave the Nets a 45-32 lead with 5:07 remaining in the half. Lopez capped the surge with a short jumper.

NOTES: As he prepared to face his former team, Deron Williams was asked if he had improved as a player during his time with the Nets. "The system we had in Utah was a great system for my style of play," Williams said. "I'm a system player. I loved Coach (Jerry) Sloan's system. I loved the offense there. We could have been a really good team there. We weren't that good defensively. It's more (isolation sets) here. I'm used to more movement. I'm still trying to adjust. It's been an adjustment for me, but it's coming along." The comments were surprising considering Williams' poor relationship with Sloan led to the coach's decision to retire two years ago. ... Johnson is bothered by his low shooting percentage, 38 percent entering play Tuesday. He is a 46 percent shooter career. ... Forward Kris Humphries returned to the starting lineup for Brooklyn. He had been replaced at power forward by Evans. ... Veteran guard Raja Bell was not with the Jazz. No reason was given for Bell's absence. ... Jerry Stackhouse (knee) and Josh Childress (foot) sat out the game for the Nets. ... Since posting an 11-4 record in November, the Nets are 2-7 in December.
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