Williams leads Jazz past Blazers, 106-95

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Deron Williams scored 24 points and the Utah Jazz scored 21 of the first 23 points and went to beat the Portland Trail Blazers 106-95 on Wednesday night.Utah led by as many as 26 points during the first half. The Jazz won for the eighth time in nine games and took over second place in the Northwest Division.Utah shot 60.3 percent from the field, hitting 38 of 63 shots. Portland shot 36.3 percent (33 of 91).Kyle Korver hit four 3-pointers and scored 16 points for Utah and Ronnie Millsap had 15 points and 11 rebounds for the Jazz.Portland’s LaMarcus Aldridge scored 14 of his game-high 25 points during the second half. Nicolas Batum scored 16 points, all in the first half.The Jazz got layups or dunks on their first seven baskets and took a 21-2 lead six minutes into the game. Portland missed 15 of its first 16 shots, but a got a bit of a lift when Batum came off the bench to score nine points to cut Utah’s lead to 26-14.The Jazz ran off 10 straight points and ended the first quarter with a 37-16 lead.Utah continued to pour it on, with 15-6 run during the middle of the second quarter that gave the Jazz their largest lead of the first half at 59-33.Utah shot 73 percent and led 63-46 at halftime.Portland made an early run in the third quarter by scoring nine straight points to cut the Jazz lead to 68-57.Later in the quarter, a 3-pointer by Martell Webster cut the Utah lead to 74-67.Utah took an 85-75 lead into the fourth quarter, but 6-0 run by Portland chopped the Jazz advantage in half at 89-84.Utah responded with back-to-back jumpers by Williams and Millsap to regain a double-digit lead and were never threatened again.Notes: Carlos Boozer, who scored 14 points, left the game early in the third quarter with a right calf strain and did not return. Boozer is averaging 19.4 points and 10.8 rebounds this season, both tops for Utah. The Jazz are averaging 111.7 points in their last nine games. Portland, celebrating 40 years as a franchise, wore throwback uniforms for Wednesday’s game.

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