Last night the Utah Jazz completed their biggest win of the season. Let’s break down how they were able to do it.
If you’re a Utah Jazz fan, you have to be in cloud 9 right now. The Jazz walked into Saturday night’s game with good confidence, winning six of their previous seven games beforehand; none of those wins were convincing enough to strongly consider the Jazz a title-contending team though.
The Clippers came into this matchup with both of their superstar wings available to play. In the previous two encounters with the Jazz, the Clippers only had Kawhi Leonard available for one of the games and Paul George out for both. Although their super-sub Montrezl Harrell would be held out of the game at the last minute due to an illness, they still had an advantage at point guard position with Mike Conley being out for the Jazz.
The Jazz jumped out to an early five point lead thanks to a Joe Ingles three pointer and a couple buckets from Donovan Mitchell. The Clippers quickly caught up and held the lead for much of the first and second quarters of action. However at the end of the second quarter Donovan Mitchell went on a six to nothing run all by himself cutting the Clipper lead to just two points.
Both teams kept the game tight the rest of the way, and eventually Utah was able to escape with a humongous victory. Donovan Mitchell finished with his 10th 30 point game of the season and is quickly catching up to Karl Malone for most 30 point games in Jazz history. Utah’s defense held Leonard and George to just 39 points combined (they average 49.5 points a game) and an ice cold fourth quarter.
While this was only a regular season game, it sure did give the Jazz some good film for a potential playoff series between these two teams in April or May. Here are my three biggest takeaways from the major victory.