Malone is on song as Jazz draw level - Sport - The Independent

Malone is on song as Jazz draw level

Karl Malone scored 32 points and Jeff Hornacek added 23 as the Utah Jazz beat the Seattle SuperSonics 118-83 on Thursday to level the Western Conference final at three games each.

Utah, previously 3-1 down in the best-of-seven series to see who faces the Chicago Bulls in the NBA Finals, have twice avoided elimination - first with an overtime win in Seattle, on Tuesday, and now with a rout at home.

The decisive game will be played tomorrow at Seattle with Utah hoping to reach the NBA Finals for the first time in their history, while the the Sonics look to return to the championship round for the first time since 1979.

"It was a great victory. We still got one more game to play but it was a great win, a great effort," said Malone, who also had 10 rebounds, seven assists and four steals. "I think the guys played tremendous basketball.

"We didn't look at it as if we had to win three in a row after we fell behind 3-1," Malone said. "We just knew we had to win two to force a game seven and now we've done that."

Utah's other future Hall of Famer, John Stockton, added 14 points and 12 assists, playing his best game of the series for the Jazz.

Shawn Kemp led Seattle with 26 points and 14 rebounds. Detlef Schrempf added 16 points and Sam Perkins chipped in 14 for the Sonics.

Utah shot 60 per cent from the field, converting 44 of 73 shots, and forcing 23 turnovers.

The Jazz dominated from the opening tip, scoring the first 12 points of the game and taking a 35-22 lead after the first quarter. Utah increased their lead to as many as 22 points in the second quarter before the Sonics went on an 11-0 run to cut the deficit to 58-47.

But Seattle pulled no closer than 10 points in the second half when a three-pointer by Gary Payton made it 61-51 early in the third quarter.

The Jazz then went on a 17-9 run to take a 78-60 lead with Hornacek scoring eight points.

Utah scored the first seven points of the fourth quarter to open a 93- 67 lead with 10min 25sec remaining and the Jazz continued to pull away.

The 35-point margin matched the worst play-off defeat for the Sonics, who suffered a 117-82 loss to Washington in game six of the 1978 NBA Finals.

The Sonics coach, George Carl, was confident his club would bounce back. "I like my basketball team. It will be there on Sunday," he said.

Suggested Topics
News
John Travolta is a qualified airline captain and employed the pilot with his company, Alto
people'That was the lowest I’d ever felt'
Life and Style
healthIt isn’t greasy. It doesn’t smell. And moreover, it costs nothing
News
peopleThe report and photo dedicated to the actress’s decolletage has, unsurprisingly, provoked anger
Property
Home body: Badger stays safe indoors
property
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
The programme sees four specialists creating what they believe are three perfect couples, based on scientific matchmaking. The couples will not meet until they walk down the aisle together
tvUK wedding show jilted
Arts and Entertainment
US pop diva Jennifer Lopez sang “Happy Birthday” to Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow, president of Turkmenistan
musicCorporate gigs become key source of musicians' income
Arts and Entertainment
You've been framed: Henri Matisse's colourful cut-outs at Tate Modern
artWhat makes a smash-hit art show
Arts and Entertainment
While many films were released, few managed to match the success of James Bond blockbuster 'Skyfall'
filmsDaniel Craig believed to be donning skis as 007 for first time
Sport
Mikel Arteta pictured during Borussia Dortmund vs Arsenal
champions league
Voices
Yes supporters gather outside the Usher Hall, which is hosting a Night for Scotland in Edinburgh
voicesBen Judah: Is there a third option for England and Scotland that keeps everyone happy?
Arts and Entertainment
Pulp-fiction lover: Jarvis Cocker
booksJarvis Cocker on Richard Brautigan
Arts and Entertainment
Robin Thicke and Pharell Williams in the video of the song, which has been accused of justifying rape
music...and he had 'almost no part' in writing it
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

HR Manager - Kent - £45,000

£40000 - £45000 per annum: Ashdown Group: HR Manager / Training Manager (L&D /...

Senior QA Engineer - Agile, SCRUM

£35000 - £50000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Senior QA Engineer (Agil...

Marketing Executive - West Midlands - £28,000

£26000 - £28000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Digital Marketing Executive (SEO, PP...

Retail Business Analyst

£40000 - £50000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our retail client ...

Day In a Page

Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week