Monday , Dec , 05 , 2005 C.Y. Ellis

Jazz hope homestand can get them above .500

(Sports Network) – The Jazz begin a five-game homestand on Monday against
Minnesota at the Delta Center. Minnesota has won two in a row and five of the
last six contests in this series. The Timberwolves have won two of their last
three at Utah.

On Sunday, Mehmet Okur dropped in 28 points and added eight rebounds to lead
Utah past the Portland Trail Blazers, 98-93, at the Rose Garden. Okur shot 12-
of-18 from the floor for Utah, which snapped a three-game skid.

Matt Harpring finished with 20 points and hit a clutch three-pointer down the
stretch in the win over the Blazers for Utah, while Gordan Giricek contributed
15 points in the victory.

Utah is just 2-6 at the Delta Center this season. The Jazz, who are 7-10 on
the season, will also host Atlanta, Seattle, Detroit and Portland on the
current homestand.

Forward Andrei Kirilenko returned to the lineup on November 29th after missing
seven games with an ankle injury. Kirilenko is still getting his game legs
back, as he has averaged 8.3 points and 4.7 rebounds in the three contests he
has played since returning to the court. The Jazz were 2-5 without the former
All-Star in the lineup.

Rookie point guard Deron Williams, who was the third overall pick in the 2005
draft, has made an impact early on. He is averaging 13.4 points, 3.1 rebounds
and a team-best 4.7 assists this season. Williams has started nine of Utah’s
first 17 games.

The Jazz have scored 100 or more points twice this season. They have allowed
more than 90 points in nine contests.