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NBA FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL --- --- --- --- ----- PHOENIX 19 21 17 38 95 UTAH 22 27 30 28 107 FINAL

HIGH SCORERS: PHO - SHAWN MARION 24, TONY DELK 21, TWO PLAYERS WITH 12 UTH - KARL MALONE 20, DAVID BENOIT 18, BRYON RUSSELL 14

HIGH REBOUND: PHO - TOM GUGLIOTTA 7, JASON KIDD 6 UTH - KARL MALONE 10, GREG OSTERTAG 7

HIGH ASSISTS: PHO - JASON KIDD 13, TONY DELK 4 UTH - JOHN STOCKTON 9, JACQUE VAUGHN 9

ATT: 19,911


Extended Box

PHOENIX (95) AT UTAH (107)

PHOENIX REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

MARION F 36 9-20 5-6 2 3 5 1 2 5 2 24 GUGLIOTTA F 30 5-8 2-2 2 5 7 2 4 2 2 12 ROBINSON C 30 4-12 3-4 0 2 2 2 6 0 1 12 KIDD G 31 3-10 3-3 1 5 6 13 2 1 2 9 ELIE G 21 1-3 0-0 0 0 0 0 2 2 2 2 T DELK 33 5-12 11-12 2 1 3 4 3 4 0 21 ROGERS 20 1-6 1-2 0 1 1 0 3 2 3 3 V DEL NEGRO 9 3-4 0-0 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 6 SANTIAGO 16 0-0 0-0 0 3 3 0 6 1 1 0 PERRY 12 3-5 0-0 0 0 0 2 4 0 0 6 DUDLEY 2 0-0 0-0 0 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 TSAKALIDIS DNP - COACH'S DECISION

TOTALS 240 34-80 25-29 7 22 29 24 34 17 13 95 (.425) (.862) TEAM REBS: 9 TOTAL TO: 13(16 PTS)

UTAH REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

MARSHALL F 27 3-4 1-2 1 5 6 0 2 1 2 7 MALONE F 29 6-9 8-10 0 10 10 4 2 0 1 20 POLYNICE C 19 3-3 0-2 0 3 3 1 1 0 1 6 STOCKTON G 24 3-8 5-6 1 1 2 9 2 0 3 12 STARKS G 28 4-6 0-0 0 1 1 3 3 2 5 9 VAUGHN 20 1-1 2-3 0 1 1 9 2 0 3 5 RUSSELL 24 4-5 4-4 0 2 2 1 5 0 1 14 D BENOIT 24 7-11 3-4 0 3 3 0 2 0 4 18 MANNING 12 4-6 0-0 0 0 0 0 5 0 0 8 OSTERTAG 21 2-4 2-4 1 6 7 0 0 1 1 6 CROTTY 8 0-1 2-2 0 0 0 1 1 1 2 2 PADGETT 4 0-1 0-0 1 0 1 0 1 0 0 0

TOTALS 240 37-59 27-37 4 32 36 28 26 5 23 107 (.627) (.730) TEAM REBS: 8 TOTAL TO: 23(21 PTS)

PHOENIX 19 21 17 38 - 95 UTAH 22 27 30 28 - 107

BLOCKED SHOTS: PHOENIX - MARION, T DELK, DUDLEY. UTAH - MARSHALL 3, OSTERTAG 3, MALONE 2, MANNING. 3-PT. FIELD GOALS: PHOENIX 2-9 (.222), MARION 1-2, ROBINSON 1-4, KIDD 0-1, ELIE 0-1, T DELK 0-1. UTAH 6-7 (.857), STOCKTON 1-2, STARKS 1-1, VAUGHN 1-1, RUSSELL 2-2, D BENOIT 1-1. TECHNICALS: PHOENIX - GUGLIOTTA, UTAH - ILLEGAL DEFENSE 2. OFFICIALS: TERRY DURHAM, HANK ARMSTRONG, NOLAN FINE. A - 19,911. T - 2:18.


Box Score

PHOENIX (95) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Marion 36 9-20 5-6 2-5 1 2 24 Gugliotta 30 5-8 2-2 2-7 2 4 12 Robinson 30 4-12 3-4 0-2 2 6 12 Kidd 31 3-10 3-3 1-6 13 2 9 Elie 21 1-3 0-0 0-0 0 2 2 T Delk 33 5-12 11-12 2-3 4 3 21 Rogers 20 1-6 1-2 0-1 0 3 3 V Del Negro 9 3-4 0-0 0-0 0 2 6 Santiago 16 0-0 0-0 0-3 0 6 0 Perry 12 3-5 0-0 0-0 2 4 6 Dudley 2 0-0 0-0 0-2 0 0 0 Tsakalidis DNP - coach's decision _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 34-80 25-29 7-29 24 34 95 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.425, FT-.862. 3-Point Goals: 2-9, .222 (Marion 1-2, Robinson 1-4, Kidd 0-1, Elie 0-1, T Delk 0-1). Team rebounds: 9. Blocked shots: 3 (Marion, T Delk, Dudley). Turnovers: 13 (Rogers 3, Elie 2, Gugliotta 2, Kidd 2, Marion 2, Robinson, Santiago). Steals: 17 (Marion 5, T Delk 4, Elie 2, Gugliotta 2, Rogers 2, Kidd, Santiago).

UTAH (107) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Marshall 27 3-4 1-2 1-6 0 2 7 Malone 29 6-9 8-10 0-10 4 2 20 Polynice 19 3-3 0-2 0-3 1 1 6 Stockton 24 3-8 5-6 1-2 9 2 12 Starks 28 4-6 0-0 0-1 3 3 9 Vaughn 20 1-1 2-3 0-1 9 2 5 Russell 24 4-5 4-4 0-2 1 5 14 D Benoit 24 7-11 3-4 0-3 0 2 18 Manning 12 4-6 0-0 0-0 0 5 8 Ostertag 21 2-4 2-4 1-7 0 0 6 Crotty 8 0-1 2-2 0-0 1 1 2 Padgett 4 0-1 0-0 1-1 0 1 0 _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 37-59 27-37 4-36 28 26 107 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.627, FT-.730. 3-Point Goals: 6-7, .857 (Stockton 1-2, Starks 1-1, Vaughn 1-1, Russell 2-2, D Benoit 1-1). Team rebounds: 8. Blocked shots: 9 (Marshall 3, Ostertag 3, Malone 2, Manning). Turnovers: 23 (Starks 5, D Benoit 4, Stockton 3, Vaughn 3, Crotty 2, Marshall 2, Malone, Ostertag, Polynice, Russell). Steals: 5 (Starks 2, Crotty, Marshall, Ostertag). ____________________________________________ Phoenix 19 21 17 38 - 95 Utah 22 27 30 28 - 107 ____________________________________________ Technical fouls: Phoenix 1 (Gugliotta, 2:44 3rd). Utah 2 (Illegal Defense 2, 5:36 2nd, 8:37 3rd). Flagrant fouls: None. A: 19,911. T: 2:18. Officials: Terry Durham, Hank Armstrong, Nolan Fine.


Game Story

SALT LAKE CITY (Ticker) -- Even if they refuse to admit it, the Utah Jazz are playing their best basketball of the season.

Karl Malone scored 20 points to lead a balanced attack as the Jazz used blistering shooting to cruise to a 107-95 victory over the Suns, their fourth straight win.

Overlooked at the start of the season, Utah (43-18) has climbed to the top of the powerful Western Conference with its best extended stretch of the season.

Since stopping a five-game losing streak in early January, Utah has won 23 of 28 games. However, coach Jerry Sloan and guard John Starks believe the Jazz can play better.

"We had some moments out there where I thought we played well," Sloan said. "We had some moments where it looked like we were struggling. We shot the ball well, but we gave up a lot of baskets that concern me."

"I think we are in a good groove, but we still have a lot of room for improvement," said Starks, who scored nine points. "I think we just can't rest on what we're doing right now."

Things are going so well for the Jazz that little-used forward David Benoit scored a season-high 18 points.

"I thought Benoit played well," Sloan said. "He came in and was really alive. I hadn't played him; I missed him the last game and didn't get him in the ballgame. He's really worked hard. I'm glad to see him have the opportunity to get some minutes."

"When the team wins, we all win, whether it's the guys on the floor or the guys sitting on the bench cheering," said Benoit, who made 7-of-11 shots in 24 minutes. "We come into every game as a team and we win or lose every game as a team."

Utah never trailed after the first five minutes, led by as many as 23 points and shot 63 percent (37-of-59) from the field as it beat Phoenix here for the seventh straight time. But Sloan still was not impressed.

"We had too many turnovers (23)," he said. "It looked like we had never seen each other out there a few times. When you have that, it's kind of hectic out there."

Shawn Marion scored 24 points and Tony Delk added 21 off the bench for the Suns, who did not notice any of Utah's perceived shortcomings.

"They just played way better than us," Suns coach Scott Skiles said. "They played much harder, executed offensively, played better defense. ... When you shoot 63 percent, the other team isn't doing a whole lot out there and they took advantage of it."

The Jazz took the lead for good at 10-8 on a basket by Donyell Marshall with 7:30 left in the first quarter. They led 22-19 after one period and Bryon Russell scored seven of his 14 points in the second quarter to widen the margin to 49-40 at halftime.

In the first half, Utah shot 68 percent (21-of-31) and held Phoenix to 37.5 percent (15-of-40).

The Suns still were within 58-49 on a jumper by Tom Gugliotta with 6:48 left in the third quarter when the Jazz took control for good with a 14-2 run. Malone scored six in the surge and baited Gugliotta into a technical foul for shoving him. His two free throws made it 72-51 with 2:44 to go.

A jumper by Benoit gave Utah its largest lead at 76-53 with 1:12 left. The fourth quarter was garbage time and Phoenix got no closer than 11 points.

John Stockton had 12 points and nine assists for Utah. Malone swept 10 boards and Jacque Vaughn also had nine assists.

Jason Kidd handed out 13 assists for Phoenix, which shot 42.5 percent (34-of-80) and was outrebounded, 36-29. The Suns have not won here since March 26, 1999.

"We just got beat tonight, flat-out got beat," Marion said. "We didn't do what we're supposed to, the calls didn't go our way, nothing went our way tonight."

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