SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- Stephon Marbury told his New York
teammates to keep their heads up and give him the ball.
Marbury scored 30 points, including New York's last six in
overtime, to help the Knicks snap a nine-game road losing streak
with a 102-99 win over Utah on Monday night.
"He wanted the ball in his hands. He commanded the ball, and
then he made shots," said Kurt Thomas, who had 16 points and set
most of the screens that left Marbury open.
After the Jazz took a 99-98 lead in overtime, Marbury made two
jumpers to give the Knicks the victory in the final game of a
dismal six-game trip.
"Tough times don't last forever, tough people do. We're a tough
group and eventually it'll change," Marbury said.
Michael Sweetney added 15 points for the Knicks, Trevor Ariza
had 14, and Penny Hardaway 13. Andrei Kirilenko scored 25 points
for Utah, but missed two free throws and a pair of 3-point attempts
in overtime that would have tied it.
"I am pretty happy for the guys. They just fight back and
didn't drop their heads. Still, I don't think I did a good job at
the end of the game," Kirilenko said.
The Jazz had a chance to tie the game in the final seconds of
regulation, but Ariza knocked a pass off Matt Harpring and out of
bounds with 4.5 seconds left.
Utah got another chance when Nazr Mohammed missed a pair of free
throws with 3.5 second left. Ariza then fouled Gordan Giricek, who
made two free throws with 0.2 seconds left to send the game into
"Even when Giricek went to the free-throw line, no one put
their heads down at all. We still believed that we were going to
win this game," Marbury said.
"We just seem to get to the point in games where we freeze
up," Utah coach Jerry Sloan said.
The Knicks had an 88-75 lead with 7:43 left in the fourth
quarter, but managed just one field goal and missed seven of their
last eight free throws in regulation.
"When you lose games at the end, you're going to start staring
down the clock. The one positive for us was Steph wanted the ball
and made big shots for us," Knicks coach Herb Williams said.
Just as in previous losses to the Los Angeles Clippers,
Sacramento Kings and Phoenix Suns on the trip, the Knicks played
well throughout before faltering late in the second half. But this
time they bounced back in overtime for their first road victory
since Dec. 27 in Orlando.
"We kept our heads up and kept competing. We knew we couldn't
get on the flight home with another loss," Thomas said.
New York beat Utah 94-93 at Madison Square Garden in December
and swept the season series for the first time since the 1991-92
New York's Jamal Crawford was not in uniform because of a
sprained left ankle. ... The Knicks' Tim Thomas jammed his left
index finger with 5:25 left in the second quarter, but X-rays were
negative and he started the second half with a heavily taped hand.
... Bell dislocated his right pinkie with 4:31 to play in
regulation, but returned to play in the overtime. ... Carlos
Boozer, Utah's leading scorer, had only five points before fouling