Ranking the top 5 Utah Jazz games from the 2022-23 season

Lauri Markkanen of the Utah Jazz.
Lauri Markkanen of the Utah Jazz. /
5 of 6
Walker Kessler of the Utah Jazz.
Walker Kessler of the Utah Jazz. /

Walker Kessler saves game with block, Jazz beat Thunder in OT

This game was absolutely wild and easily one of the best games of the season for the Utah Jazz. Once again, Walker Kessler got to play the role of the hero for Utah, but it was truly a team effort.

Lauri Markkanen led the way with 43 points, outperforming Shai Gilgeous-Alexander’s 39-point night. He made some big-time buckets down the stretch of the game, including a clutch putback to keep Utah in the contest near the end of regulation.

Overtime saw Utah rain down a barrage of three threes combined with five free throws, picking up the win. Markkanen, Jordan Clarkson, and Kelly Olynyk all hit big-time shots. The Jazz picked up a 120-119 win on February 23, 2023.

However, the moment everyone remembers in this game was Kessler’s monster sequence at the end of regulation. Without it, the Jazz would have never won this contest.

Down by two points with roughly 10 seconds to go, Markkanen missed a shot at the rim after a great contest by Lu Dort. But Kessler was there to get the rebound. And after battling through two defenders to get a shot up, he couldn’t get the shot to go, but he grabbed his own miss and tied the game with 4.6 seconds remaining.

Then, on the other end, Isaiah Joe caught the ball on the perimeter and drove past Kessler. But as he went for the reverse layup, Kessler extended his arm, made an amazing block as time expired, and sent the game to overtime.

Without those two plays, the Jazz couldn’t have won this game, and while the whole team deserves credit, Kessler was extremely clutch.