Regular Season Series (Game 2 of 4)

Series starts 11/26

Game 1: Friday, November 26th
Game 2: Sunday, January 2nd
Game 3: Sunday, February 27th
Game 4: Monday, March 28th

Jazz 80

(11-20, 5-12 away)

Rockets 99

(16-15, 11-7 home)

    Coverage: KJZZ

    7:30 PM ET, January 2, 2005

    Toyota Center, Houston, TX

    1 2 3 4 T
    UTAH 23 23 19 1580
    HOU 26 18 32 2399

    Top Performers

    UTAH: C. Boozer 14 Pts, 5 Reb, 4 Ast, 2 Stl, 1 Blk

    Hou: B. Sura 24 Pts, 10 Reb, 4 Ast, 5 Stl

    Sura adds 24 points, 10 boards and 5 steals in win

    HOUSTON (AP) -- Tracy McGrady prefers a fast-paced offense, and it showed against the Utah Jazz.

    Led by 25 points from McGrady, the Houston Rockets scored a season-high 22 fast-break points in a 99-80 win over Utah on Wednesday night.

    "That's the kind of basketball I like to play, to get out and run on transition and forget about plays," McGrady said. "We're a faster team now. We're not so much walking the ball up the floor. We're pushing the ball.

    "Tonight we were spreading the ball out on the perimeter and opening up great shots for me. I'm having a lot of fun and we can't stop now."

    Bob Sura tied season-highs with 24 points, 10 rebounds and five steals, helping Houston to its third straight victory and its 10th win in 14 games.

    Early in the third quarter, Houston went on an 23-4 run that included four three-point plays, two by Yao Ming and one each by Sura and Juwan Howard.

    "We definitely need a third scorer to step up, other than Tracy and Yao," Sura said. "Tonight it was me. The big thing was our defense and our transition game."

    Gordon Giricek had 15 points to lead five double-figure scorers for the Jazz, who lost their fifth straight. Utah coach Jerry Sloan was impressed by Sura but unhappy with his team's effort.

    "Sura played a terrific game," Sloan said. "To get 10 rebounds as a guard is something. We stood around and watched the ball bounce two or three times and then said, 'Whoops, we should get that."

    Matt Harpring had 12 points and three rebounds for Utah (11-20), which is in last place in the Northwest Division.

    "I've never been in this situation, in a losing streak like this," Harpring said. "You've got to be mentally tough and fight through it. But tonight, I didn't do a good job. I need to fight more."

    After six lead changes and seven ties in the first quarter, Houston went on an 8-0 run at the end of the period to finish with a 26-23 lead. McGrady had 10, including a 3 at the buzzer.

    Utah scored the first seven points of the second quarter, but Sura brought the Rockets back by scoring seven points in a 9-2 run to take a 35-32 lead.

    Giricek scored 11 in the first half to stake the Jazz to a 46-44 halftime lead.

    The win put Houston over the .500 mark (16-15) for only the second time this season. The first was at 3-2 on Nov. 9.

    Game notes

    Maurice Taylor and Curtis Borchardt each were assessed a technical foul with 10:53 left in the game, after they pushed each other. Taylor was ejected because it was his second technical. ... The Rockets placed forward Clarence Weatherspoon on the injured list with a right calf strain and activated guard Andre Barrett and forward Ryan Bowen Sunday off of IR. ... The Jazz are 3-14 since Andrei Kirilenko went on the injured list.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 80 99
    FGM-FGA 30-77 (.390) 33-74 (.446)
    3PM-3PA 3-13 (.231) 5-15 (.333)
    FTM-FTA 17-23 (.739) 28-35 (.800)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 9-33 10-47
    Assists 18 19
    Turnovers 14 14
    Steals 8 8
    Blocks 4 3
    Fast Break Points 6 22
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 29 (1/0) 23 (3/0)
    Largest Lead 5 23

    Top Performers

    Carlos Boozer Boozer
    Points: 14
    Reb: 5
    Ast: 4
    Stl: 2
    Blk: 1
    Bob Sura Sura
    Points: 24
    Reb: 10
    Ast: 4
    Stl: 5
    Blk: 0