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NBA Preview from The Sports Network



Tuesday, December 18th (All times Eastern)

Utah Jazz (13-12) at Brooklyn Nets (13-10), 7:30 p.m.

(Sports Network) - 'Tis the season to be jolly' doesn't coincide with the Brooklyn Nets, who have struggled out of the gates this month.

The Nets look to get back on the winning path Tuesday night versus the Utah Jazz at Barclays Center and have lost six of eight games in December. Brooklyn had a two-game winning streak cut short with Saturday's 83-82 setback at Chicago as Marco Belinelli's driving layup in the closing seconds put the Bulls on top for good.

Deron Williams led the Nets with 24 points and Brook Lopez chipped in 18 points and 10 boards for Brooklyn, which got 16 points from Joe Johnson and are still second in the Atlantic Division behind New York.

"I don't want to take anything away from them, but we kind of lost this game with mistakes," Williams said.

Brooklyn shot 38.7 percent for the game and committed 18 turnovers.

Lopez played his second game since missing time with an injury and has three double-doubles on the season.

The Nets won 11 games last month and have had trouble finding their groove in December. The Nets, who are allowing just 93.8 ppg on defense, own an 8-5 ledger on their own court this season and will visit the Knicks Wednesday at Madison Square Garden.

Utah will play four straight games away from home, starting with Tuesday's matchup with the Nets.

The Jazz will also visit Indiana, Miami and Orlando and are only 4-10 away from Salt Lake City. They have lost back-to-back games since a four-game winning streak and suffered a 99-86 loss versus Memphis the last time out on Saturday.

Al Jefferson did his best to keep the Jazz in the game with 21 points and eight rebounds, while Paul Millsap netted 12 points in defeat. The Jazz held a 54-44 advantage at the break and was outscored 28-10 in the third quarter.

"Second half they picked up their defense effort a little bit and got a little more physical and we just didn't respond," Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin said.

Utah led by as many 12 points in the first half and its 10 points in the third stanza was a season low. Memphis also outscored Utah 50-38 in the paint.

The Jazz are 10th in the league with 99.9 ppg, but are in the bottom bracket in defense, surrendering 99.2 ppg. The Jazz have allowed at least 90 points in five straight games.

Utah won both meetings with the Nets a season ago and is 6-1 in the previous seven matchups between the two teams. The Jazz, though, haven't had much success as the guest in this series, losing six of the past nine road bouts.

12/18 10:37:42 ET