Jefferson helps Jazz top Hornets 96-84

Associated Press Modified: November 28, 2012 at 11:17 pm •  Published: November 28, 2012
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The Jazz began to take command in the third quarter, methodically building a double-digit lead while the Hornets struggled from the field. New Orleans made only five of 14 shots in the period, missing all five 3-point attempts, while Utah made 10 of 17 shots (59 percent). Millsap had nine of his points in the quarter and Williams added eight before his fall forced him from the game.

Still the Jazz continued to pull away, thanks to Kanter's three-point play and inside basket, the second of which put Utah up 72-56 heading into the final quarter.

"We lost the game in the third quarter," Vasquez said. "We didn't execute and they outscored us 31-17.

"We cannot afford to lose like we did," he added. "We are much better than what we showed tonight."

That proved too much for New Orleans to overcome, despite a 13-4 run to start the fourth quarter which narrowed the score to 76-69.

That's when Hayward took over, hitting a pair of 3s and scoring as he was fouled by Austin Rivers to help Utah regain a double-digit lead. His end-to-end fast-break layup put Utah up by 13 with about two minutes left.

After the teams finished the first quarter tied at 20, the Hornets went more than half of the second quarter without scoring a point. New Orleans missed seven shots and had six turnovers during that stretch, but Utah was not able to parlay New Orleans' drought into a big lead, going up 29-20 before Lopez hit a pair of free throws and the Hornets started to close the gap.

New Orleans outscored Utah 18-12 the rest of the quarter, with Vasquez hitting a 3, a floater and finger roll, the last basket cutting Utah's lead to 41-39 at halftime.

NOTES: Hornets rookie Anthony Davis (left ankle) missed his sixth-straight game and Monty Williams said before tip-off that he did not expect Davis back for Saturday night's home game against Oklahoma City, either. ... Utah was without Mo Williams (right foot) for a third straight game, but Corbin said he expects Williams to be back Friday night at Oklahoma City. As for Williams' head injury, it was too early to tell. "Hopefully, he is fine," Corbin said. ... Utah has won five of six games. ...The Hornets' 3-point woes came two nights after making 15 of 25 3-point attempts in a road victory over the Los Angeles Clippers. ... Lopez did not block a shot for the first time this season.