Playing in overtime almost ruined Raja Bell's night. Bell, who has struggled with his shooting for much of the season, hit two clutch jumpers in overtime to help the Jazz to a 109-102 win over the Sacramento Kings on Saturday night. Bell finished with 16 points, his highest total since Feb. 7, which was the last time the Jazz played the Kings. Afterward, Bell bolted out of the locker room, through the tunnel inside EnergySolutions Arena and to his car. He wasn't avoiding the media. He just had better things to do. "His wife and kids had a flight and had to be at the airport," said Jazz forward C.J. Miles. "Best believe we asked why he was getting out of here so fast." A second overtime would have been destructive to the travel plans of the Bell family. He made sure it didn't happen. Bell's jumpers put the Jazz ahead 103-100, and then 105-100. He then stole a Kings pass, and started a possession that culminated with a dunk by Al Jefferson. That slam put Utah up 107-100 with 8.2 seconds left in the game. "Great to see him hit some shots," said Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin. "He's taken some good shots, and they've rimmed out on him. But tonight they went in for him and it's great to see that big one at the end go in for him because he works really hard on his shot." Bell was coming off of two single-digit scoring games at home during the week. He had two points against Boston on Monday and six against the Nuggets on Thursday. He's only shooting 42.9 percent this season, which has been a source of frustration for the veteran guard. "A little bit (frustrated), but at the same time Raj is the type of guy where it's over the next day," Miles said. "He's in practice and you can't do anything about it." Bell has just kept working to start hitting shots more consistently. All shooters go through slumps and ups-and-downs.
Raja Bell dashes off to be with family after big game
The Deseret News | Mar 7