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News » Former Ute on wrong end of marquee matchup

Former Ute on wrong end of marquee matchup

Former Ute on wrong end of marquee matchup
The last time Philadelphia's Andre Miller went up against the Jazz's Deron Williams nearly two months ago, he was facing a hesitant player coming back too soon from an ankle injury that had kept him out of the first six games of the season.

But Miller encountered a whole different opponent Monday.

With Williams finally fully recovered, it was Miller --?the former University of Utah star -- who came out on the rough end of the matchup this time, doing next to nothing over the decisive middle quarters of a 112-95 loss to the Jazz at EnergySolutions Arena. Williams, meanwhile, erupted for a season-high 27 points.

"He did what a franchise player should do," Philadelphia's Reggie Evans said.

While Williams made 11 of 18 shots --?mostly from long range -- Miller hit just 5 of 12 and finished with 13 points and eight assists. He did little of his damage before the Jazz had the game under control, too.

Going into the fourth quarter with his Sixers trailing by 15, Miller had just five points and six assists -- two of each in the middle two quarters, combined -- and three turnovers. He scored eight quick points in the first half of the fourth quarter, but then fouled out for the first time all season with about five minutes left.

That was a far cry from his previous meeting with his fellow premier point guard, when Miller scored 25 points with six assists and Williams managed only seven on 1-for-8 shooting, albeit with nine assists.

"It happens to everybody sometimes," Miller said. "It's not about how I play. It's about how the team plays, as a group -- which wasn't that good."

Still, coach Tony DiLeo still sees Miller as one of the best guards in the NBA, nearly a decade after leaving the Utes as one of the best players in their history.

"He's the consummate pro," DiLeo said, "and he does so many intangibles that don't show up in the stats. He controls the game, he sees everything. He's been like a second coach out on the floor."


Author: Fox Sports
Author's Website: http://www.foxsports.com
Added: December 30, 2008


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