Ravens

Hayward's 17 lift Jazz over T-Wolves 106-84

201301022034740442115-p2.jpeg

Hayward's 17 lift Jazz over T-Wolves 106-84

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) Gordon Hayward scored 17 points, Enes Kanter had 15 and the Utah Jazz beat the Minnesota Timberwolves 106-84 on Wednesday night to snap a three-game losing streak.

Paul Millsap started 7 of 7 for Utah and finished with 14 points, and Jamaal Tinsley had 12 on 6-of-8 shooting.

Tinsley started in place Mo Williams, who learned earlier in the day he will be out six weeks after opting for surgery on his right thumb.

The game marked the return of Andrei Kirilenko, who played 10 seasons for the Jazz before being allowed to leave via free agency two years ago.

The crowd warmly welcomed the small forward nicknamed AK-47 with a round of applause during introductions. He hit his first three shots but finished with just 12 points on 4-of-7 shooting.

Alexey Shved and Kevin Love led Minnesota (14-14) with 13 apiece and Love added 10 rebounds but neither shot well. Love was 4-of-14 shooting and Shved shot 3 of 10

Nikola Pekovic had 11 points for Minnesota.

The Timberwolves made just 29 of 84 shots, including 2 of 17 from beyond the arc. The made only 12 of 40 shots in the second half. They were outscored 56-36 in the paint and 25-8 on the break.

Utah (16-17) trailed by one after the first quarter but opened the second on a 15-4 run and the third on an 11-0 run.

They led by as many as 20 in the third quarter, and unlike last week when they blew a 19-point lead against the Los Angeles Clippers, they kept pouring it on.

Six Jazz players scored in double figures, the kind of effort they will need if they hope to climb back into the playoff picture.

Millsap, who has seen his playing time decrease with the emergence of Derrick Favors, missed his only shot midway through the fourth quarter before exiting for good.

Marvin Williams added 11 points and five rebounds for Utah.

The Jazz were reeling before the game after learning Mo Williams would be out for so long.

But coach Tyrone Corbin and his players expressed confidence in veteran backups Tinsley and Earl Watson.

Tinsley showed his leadership, making 5 of 6 shots in the first half, including one where he bounced the inbounds pass off the backside of Pekovic for an easy layup.

Watson finished with nine assists, including five in the first half when the Jazz led by as many as 10.

The Jazz opened the second quarter on their first big run, with reserves Kanter and Watson providing the biggest punch.

Kanter hit an outside jumper, jammed after a long pass from Watson and went coast-to-coast on a steal for another dunk.

The heady Watson fed players for alley-oops and pushed the ball up the court with long passes, including one that resulted in a Hayward dunk and 40-30 Jazz lead.

Utah dominated on points in the paint, holding a 32-18 first-half advantage.

The Timberwolves also shot just 38.6 percent in the first half, including 1 of 8 from beyond the arc as they trailed 53-45 at the break.

Kirilenko, who was drafted in 1999 by the Jazz (24th overall pick), acknowledged he wasn't sure what kind of a reception he would receive.

While the fans were kind, the opposing players were too much for the T-Wolves.

Utah was motivated after enduring tough back-to-back losses against the Clippers to close out 2012.

They started 2013 on a much better note.

NOTES: Utah's roster is full at 15 because guard Raja Bell counts even though he is not with the team. The Jazz failed to trade him following a nasty dispute with Corbin last season. ..Kirilenko still has his home in Salt Lake City and his Kirilenko's Kids charity. .. Love received a technical during Utah's big third-quarter run. Jazz PF Favors had perhaps his best move of the season when he spun around Greg Steimsma during Utah's big second-quarter run. . Former Jazz coach Jerry Sloan was in the stands again to see Kirilenko's return.

Quick Links

Lamar Jackson received congratulatory postgame texts from Doug Williams, Randall Cunningham

untitled_collage_1.png
USA TODAY Sports

Lamar Jackson received congratulatory postgame texts from Doug Williams, Randall Cunningham

Lamar Jackson's first NFL start against the Cincinnati Bengals Sunday will go down as one of the most memorable days of his career.

Going 13-of-19 for 150 yards in the air while rushing for 117 yards on 27 attempts is a pretty solid day for a rookie quarterback

With several days to reflect, one of Jackson's favorite parts of the 24-21 win was the congratulatory texts he received from two former quarterbacks.

"I got a text from Doug Williams and Randall Cunningham congratulating me," Jackson said Wednesday. "So, that was pretty cool."

Williams, who became the first African-American quarterback to win a Super Bowl with the Washington Redskins in 1987, and Randall Cunningham, who had a long career with the Philadelphia Eagles, Dallas Cowboys, Minnesota Vikings, and Ravens, are seen as trailblazers by Jackson.

The rookie QB noted that he has been in contact with the two prior to earning the starting job in Week 11.

"Those are the guys that paved the way for us," Jackson added.

"Without those guys, you know, we probably wouldn't be in the situation we are [in]. So, hats of to those guys. Them congratulating me, from the GOATS, I'm like, 'yeah, that's cool.'

MORE RAVENS NEWS:

Quick Links

Capitals return home still short-handed, but with momentum after strong road trip

usatsi_10625300.jpg
USA Today Sports Images

Capitals return home still short-handed, but with momentum after strong road trip

The Capitals return home to play the Chicago Blackhawks (7 p.m., NBC Sports Washington) after a successful road trip (3-1-0), but will still be without forwards Evgeny Kuznetsov and T.J. Oshie (upper-body injuries), who remain day-to-day, according to coach Todd Reirden.   

Here are four things to watch:

Holtby’s back

After missing three games with an upper-body injury of his own, Caps goalie Braden Holtby was thrown into the fire down 4-2 at Montreal on Monday. But he played lights out and matched Habs goalie Carey Price save-for-save, finishing with 22 as Washington rallied for a 5-4 overtime win. Holtby now feels good enough as he will start against the Blackhawks tonight. In his past four appearances, Holtby has stopped 116 of 122 shots on goal.

New-look Blackhawks

Chicago’s slow start cost Joel Quenneville his job on Nov. 6. An NHL coach getting fired is rarely news. But when it’s a guy who’s been in his post for more than a decade and has won three Stanley Cups it is still jarring. The results are mixed since Jeremy Colliton took over. Chicago lost his first two games behind the bench, but is 2-0-2 in its past four games. That’s a small step in the right direction, but the Blackhawks are in sixth place in the Central Division.

Wilsonnnnn!!!!!

This was supposed to be the day Tom Wilson returned to the lineup after his 20-game suspension. An arbitrator cut that short last week so Wilson played on all four games of the road trip and had a goal and four assists. Not a bad start. Wednesday he gets his first home game of the year and what should be a raucous reception from the faithful at Capital One Arena. 

Old mates

On Monday, the crowd at Bell Centre booed former Canadien Lars Eller, who promptly took the puck up ice and scored the game-winning goal in overtime. It was a great moment for a player who felt Montreal gave up on him way too soon when trading him to the Capitals. Michal Kempny knows how he feels. 

Languishing on the bench for most of last season in Chicago as a healthy scratch – he played just 31 games - Kempny sees his old team for the first time since helping Washington win a Stanley Cup. Quenneville is gone, but the defenseman would love to show the rest of the organization trading him was a mistake. 

MORE CAPITALS NEWS: