Going Downhill Fast

The Utah Jazz haven't struggled this badly in nearly three years.

They'll be trying to snap a six-game losing streak when they host the surging Seattle SuperSonics on Saturday night.

Oddsmakers from SBG Global have made Utah -13 point spread favorites (NBA Odds) for today’s game, the over/under has been set at 212.5 total points (Matchup). Our public betting information shows that 59% of bets for this game have been placed on Utah –13 (View NBA Bet Percentages).

The Jazz (13-11) have not won since a 110-101 home win over Miami on Dec. 3 and the skid is their longest since dropping nine in a row March 4-19, 2005.

Utah is allowing 107.5 points per game and has been outscored by and average of 7.5 points during their slide.

Five of Utah's last six defeats have come on the road, including Friday's 99-91 loss in Portland. After Saturday's game, the Jazz head out on a four-game road trip against teams from the Southeast Division.

"It seems like it comes down to the last 4 or 5 minutes," Utah's Carlos Boozer said. "I felt like we had a chance to win all six of them but for some reason we can't win. Maybe we're making the wrong mistakes and not getting the right stops."

Boozer had 22 points, 12 rebounds and six assists on Friday for the Jazz, and Andrei Kirilenko had 16 points and eight rebounds. Center Mehmet Okur, who averages 12.2 points, missed his second straight game with a possible strained left trapezius and has an MRI exam scheduled for Saturday.

Utah shot just 39.4 percent against the Trail Blazers - and missed all 13 of its 3-point attempts.

"We have to use a little more patience and try to get the ball inside," Jazz coach Jerry Sloan said. "We have to try and make them play offense for more than two or three seconds."

Utah has dropped five of eight against Seattle (7-17) overall and four of six at home.

The SuperSonics won for the fifth time in eight games on Friday, beating Minnesota 99-88. Seattle opened the season with 14 losses in 16 games, but is feeling much better about itself lately.

"We're starting to play together as a team," said Chris Wilcox, who had 19 points and 11 rebounds against the Timberwolves. "Guys are starting to look for other guys that are open and we are starting to move the ball more."

Kurt Thomas scored a season-high 18 and rookie Kevin Durant chipped in 13 for Seattle, which improved to 2-2 on its five-game road trip. The Sonics, who were coming off Wednesday's 117-110 win in New York, are 4-9 on the road this season.

"We've been getting off to slow starts every game of this trip, but we've been fighting, trying to get back into every game," Thomas said. "We've been covering for each other on the defensive end and been sharing the ball on the offensive end. I hope we continue to do that tomorrow night against Utah."

Luke Ridnour had 13 points in 25 minutes, his most playing time in four games after missing 12 with a strained left quadriceps.

By: Marc Young - theSpread.com - Email Us

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