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Utah Jazz

EMPTYING THE NOGGIN Injuries can’t derail Jazz in stunning win in Boston

David Locke

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SUMMARY:  A logicless win for the Utah Jazz who — without Rudy Gobert and Derrick Favors — beat the Eastern Conference-leading Boston Celtics.

• This was an incredible win in the most unaccepted manner. The Jazz entered the night on a four-game losing streak with no confidence and were losing their identity. Then, 1:50 into the game Rudy Gobert went down with a knee injury and then Derrick Favors took an elbow to the head and was done for the night.

 

• The Jazz were up by 7 points at the half and it seemed improbable that without Gobert and Favors, the Jazz could withstand 24 more minutes. Instead, they stretched the lead to 10 and then took it to as much as 17. The Celtics had won 7 of the 11 times this year when trailed by 12 but tonight they never got it inside 7.

 

Donovan Mitchell was having a bad shooting night and then hit two mammoth 3s in the 4th quarter to hold off the Celtics’ surge. The Celtics cut the game to 7 and Alec Burks made a driving layup then withit a 9-point game and 6:01 left Mitchell pull for an off the bounce 3 in the face of the defender with 5:31 and on the next possession, he did the same and put the Jazz up by 15 and the night.

 

Ricky Rubio was terrific. He was active defensively and was aggressive going to the basket offensively. In the Chicago the coaching staff was upset with Rubio for not taking a layup when it was available and tonight he took three layups and made a ton of plays.vHe hit on 10 of first 11 shots.

 

• His first shot of the night he bypassed a top of the circle 3, which he has been missing. Instead, he stepped into a 16-footer which he makes a good rate and he made it. Rubio is such a confidence player that making the first shot is vital to his game.

 

• Epke Udoh was terrific defensively. He covers a lot of ground. He is long defensively. He impacted shots at the rim and he cuts off drives and slides into passing lanes. After not playing for an extended period of time, he played an incredible 28 minutes. When he said he is one of the best defensive players in the world, he wasn’t kidding.

 

• Joe Ingles played 37 minutes. He is now averaging over 30 minutes a night.

 

• Donovan Mitchell had a career high 9 assists. Joe Ingles had 8 rebounds.

 

• First Jazz win in Boston since they beat the 2008 World Championship team.

 

• Gordon Hayward has still never won a game in Boston that the Jazz were involved in.

•The Jazz hit on 13 of their 25 3-point attempts.

 

• The Jazz trapped Kyrie at times and it got the ball out of his hands and the Celtics were unable to make the shots to take advantage of the rotations.

 

• The Celtics defense has not been good recently and the Jazz were able to score in the second half of this game at a very high rate.

 

• The Jazz held the Celtics to 4 of 21 shooting in the second quarter.

 

• Jonas Jerebko played a strong game in his return to Boston.  He had to play some minutes at the center tonight with the Jazz.

David Locke enters his ninth year as the radio play-by-play voice of the Utah Jazz, having spent the majority of his career in radio in Salt Lake City and Seattle. In the summer of 2016, Locke created the Locked on Podcast Network which has podcast daily bite sized podcasts for every NBA and NFL team. A native of Palo Alto, Calif., Locke graduated from Occidental College in Los Angeles with a degree in Political Science and Sociology. Locke and his wife have a son and a daughter.

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