Utah Jazz Team Report – January 24
=== Utah Jazz Team Report – January 24 ===
(Sports Network) – The Utah Jazz try to get back on the winning track this
evening when they host the Los Angeles Lakers at the Delta Center.
This contest was supposed to be Karl Malone’s much-anticipated return to Utah,
but the future Hall of Famer is on the injured list and won’t even be with the
team tonight, as he is still in LA receiving treatment on a sprained medial
collateral ligament in his right knee.
Malone, who also missed a game earlier in the year against the Jazz in Los
Angeles due to suspension, spent the first 18 years of his career in Utah
before bolting for the Lakers via free agency this past summer.
Utah, meanwhile, comes into tonight’s contest on a sour note after dropping a
93-82 decision to the Clippers on Friday. Carlos Arroyo and Greg Ostertag each
scored 16 points for the Jazz, who have dropped four consecutive contests.
Ostertag also grabbed a game-high 12 rebounds.
The Jazz, who have not been under .500 all season, slipped to 21-21 on the
year with the loss.
Utah was again without forward Andrei Kirilenko, who missed his third straight
game with a nagging ankle injury, as the Jazz used their 11th different
starting lineup. He is doubtful for tonight’s contest.
On the milestone watch, coach Jerry Sloan needs four more victories to join
Lenny Wilkens, Don Nelson and Larry Brown as the only current NBA coaches with
at least 900 regular-season wins.
The Jazz, who will be starting a three-game homestand tonight, has lost two in
a row at home and are 17-5 in their building this season.
The Lakers defeated Utah earlier in the season, but could at a disadvantage
tonight, as the home team in this series has won seven of the last eight
matchups. LA has also won four straight matchups, including three of its last
five in Salt Lake City.