NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Friday, March 28th (All times Eastern)
Utah Jazz (23-49) at New Orleans Pelicans (31-40), 8 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - The New Orleans Pelicans have played some spectacular basketball of late and they'll try to continue that Friday night when they host the Utah Jazz at the Smoothie King Center.
The Pelicans have won four in a row and are a perfect 3-0 on this current homestand, which ends Friday night. An undefeated record during a residency is great at any time, but during this stretch in the Big Easy, the Pelicans have beaten the two-time defending NBA champion Miami Heat, Brooklyn Nets and Los Angeles Clippers, three teams headed to the postseason.
On Wednesday, New Orleans toppled the Clippers, 98-96, holding the league's top offensive unit 11 points under their season average.
Anthony Morrow poured in a team-high 27 points.
Anthony Davis added 16 points, 13 rebounds and six blocked shots and Alexis Ajinca finished with 14 points and 11 rebounds for the Pelicans. Darius Miller added 16 points off the bench and Tyreke Evans donated 10 points and nine assists in the win.
"Tyreke (Evans) steps up and plays point guard for the majority of the game. Darius (Miller), he's a guy that I didn't know was going to be able to play at that kind of level because he just hasn't done it. To his credit, he stepped up when we needed him," said Pelicans coach Monty Williams. "Not only did we beat a good team, we beat a team that's got a chance to win a title."
Pelicans guard Eric Gordon (left knee tendinitis) missed his second straight game. He is listed as questionable for Friday.
The Jazz have struggled of late, losing two in a row, eight of nine and 13 of the last 15.
On Wednesday, Utah fell at home to the Memphis Grizzlies, 91-87.
Derrick Favors had 22 points and 10 rebounds and Gordon Hayward added 18 for the Jazz. Trey Burke had 11 points and 10 assists and Enes Kanter added 11 points and 15 rebounds in the setback.
The Jazz led by as many as 13 in the third quarter, but Memphis took the final frame by a 29-16 margin.
"It's a loss. We had an opportunity to win the game. They made plays down the stretch, give them credit. They had 29 points in the fourth quarter. They made the plays they needed to down the stretch," said Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin.
The Jazz, who have dropped three straight on the road, beat the Pelicans in Salt Lake City on Nov. 13, but lost in New Orleans one week later. The Pelicans are 4-1 in their last five hosting the Jazz.
03/28 10:24:39 ET