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Wells scores 21 off the bench

1/3/2004

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) -- Bonzi Wells is not only adapting to his
new team, but to his new role as a reserve.

Wells, traded from Portland to Memphis a month ago, scored 21
points and handed out six assists Friday night as the Memphis
Grizzlies ended their seven-game losing streak with a 100-88 win
over the Utah Jazz.

Wells shot 8-of-16 from the field to lead six Grizzlies in
double figures. He was a starter in Portland, but for now is
satisfied with his reserve role.

"I'll do whatever (Memphis coach Hubie Brown) wants me to do,"
Wells said. "...It's definitely a different role, but you know,
Coach Brown is the coach. If he sees a starter in me, he'll start
me. If he likes me coming off the bench, I'll just have to come off
the bench with some firepower."

Memphis, which had not won since Dec. 19, put the game away with
a 13-2 run early in the fourth quarter. The Jazz never got within
double digits the rest of the way.

Utah, which has a a rebounding edge of almost six per game over
its opponents, was beaten on the boards 43-39, including 18
offensive rebounds, and Jazz coach Jerry Sloan was displeased with
the effort.

"They put it to us, and we just started crying to the refs,"
Sloan said. "We were not running. We looked casual. We just stood
around and got smacked.

"They knew we were soft, but I didn't realize we were this
soft. We need to grow up and stop crying to the refs whenever we
get knocked around."

James Posey added 13 for Memphis, while Lorenzen Wright finished
with 12 points and 11 rebounds. Stromile Swift scored 11.

Carlos Arroyo led Utah with 25 points, the second straight game
he has led the Jazz in scoring. Matt Harpring scored 16, Raja Bell
had 12, and Andrei Kirilenko finished with 11 points but was
4-of-12 from the field and missed all three of his second-half
shots.

"(Kirilenko) was ineffective because he was hanging out at the
3-point line all the time," Sloan said. "In the first half, he
drove the ball to the basket, and in the second half, he would
start driving and back out of it."

The Grizzlies led 55-52 at halftime behind 12 points from Wells,
all in the second quarter. Wells was the only Memphis player with
more than six points in the half, but all 10 Grizzlies who played
scored.

Memphis maintained a five- to seven-point lead through much of
the third quarter and carried a 80-73 lead into the final period.

The Grizzlies extended the lead to 95-79 thanks to the 13-2 run
early in the final quarter. At one point during the run, the Jazz
went three minutes without scoring. The Grizzlies relied on their
reserves, who were showing more effort than the most of the
starters, to help produce a 33-10 edge in fast-break points.

While Wells played 32 minutes and reserve point guard Earl
Watson (10 points; nine assists) was on the floor for 29, starters
Jason Williams and Mike Miller played 19 and 14 minutes,
respectively.

"We stayed with (the reserves) because this is the third
straight game we came out shooting 2-of-14, 2-of-15, and (the
starters) were tired," Brown said. "We rewarded the second unit,
the guys who came in and had 20 deflections. The first unit in nine
minutes had zero deflections.

Game notes
Wells returned to the lineup after missing a game from a
concussion sustained against Indiana on Dec. 29. ... Wells' temper
surfaced in the second quarter as he drew a technical for arguing
an offensive foul call. It was his second technical since joining
Memphis. ... Greg Ostertag, who had missed two of the last three
games with a strained left knee, was back in the Jazz starting
lineup. ...Paul Grant, the 7-foot center signed Thursday by the
Jazz, played six minutes and scored two points. ...Wright recorded
his fourth double-double of the season. ... Ostertag tied his
season high with six blocks.