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(AP Photo/Steve C. Wilson)
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- Deron Williams scored 13 of his 25 points in the decisive third quarter, and the Utah Jazz beat Houston 113-91 on Friday night to win the series 4-2 and knock the Rockets out of the playoffs in the opening round for the second straight year.
The Jazz were determined to avoid a Game 7 in Houston, site of their embarrassing 95-69 loss in Game 5 on Tuesday. Instead, the Jazz are headed to Los Angeles and open the second round against the Lakers on Sunday.
Tracy McGrady scored 40 for the Rockets, but could not beat the Jazz by himself and fell to 0-7 in playoff series.
Luis Scola was the only other Rockets player in double figures with 15 points. The Rockets lost point guard Rafer Alston with a sprained ankle late in the second quarter and the offense never recovered.
The 69 points Utah scored Tuesday was the lowest total this season. The Jazz passed that dubious mark early in the third quarter and kept going, playing with a bit of a nasty streak and intensity they didn't have the first time they tried to clinch the series.
Mehmet Okur had 19 points and 13 rebounds, and Carlos Boozer added 15 points and 10 boards. Andrei Kirilenko scored 11 points and Williams added nine assists.
The Jazz found their long-range shooting and made 10 of 22 3-pointers. Utah was 2-for-23 from beyond the arc in the previous two games.
Jazz fans once again taunted McGrady with the chant "Over-rated!" then replaced it with "Beat LA!" as the fourth quarter wound down.
McGrady finished 13-for-26 and tried to carry the Rockets, but few of his teammates climbed aboard. McGrady pushed the Rockets through the end of the second quarter, going on a 9-0 run and scoring 13 straight for Houston while cutting a 17-point lead to 58-54 at halftime.
But the Rockets could get nothing going in the third, scoring only 11 points while going 4-for-22 from the floor and looking a lot like the Jazz had when Houston staved off elimination Tuesday at home.
McGrady had just one point in the quarter. He came out firing in the fourth, but even the two-time scoring champion couldn't save the Rockets, who lost to the Jazz in a Game 7 at Houston a year ago.
The Jazz didn't want to put themselves in that situation again and snuffed the Rockets' hopes by opening the third quarter with a 20-5 run, which Williams capped with seven straight points. He made back-to-back 3-pointers to put Utah up 77-59 and prompted Houston to call a timeout before it could get any worse.
On his way to the Jazz bench, Williams was pumping his fist and shaking his head while saying "No way" -- apparently to the idea of another visit to Houston. Notes:@ McGrady scored eight of Houston's first 10 points. ... Utah was 12-for-24 in the first quarter. ... Ronnie Brewer had 13 points and Matt Harpring and Kyle Korver scored 10 apiece for the Jazz.
(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)