Keyonte delivers in the clutch for the Utah Jazz

In a close game, the Utah Jazz delivered in the 4th to put the Miami Heat away.
Miami Heat v Utah Jazz
Miami Heat v Utah Jazz / Alex Goodlett/GettyImages

In their final game of 2023, the Utah Jazz faced off with the defending Eastern Conference Champions, the Miami Heat. It was the start of a series of games where the Jazz were facing mostly winning teams and getting it off on the right foot was key.

In a foul-laden game that saw 68 free throw attempts, lots of missed 3-pointers (both teams shot under 30% from deep), 12 ties, and 25 lead changes, the Jazz were in a dogfight from the opening tip.

Miami's biggest lead was 6, the Jazz's largest was 8. A very competitive game throughout.

And the headliners were no-shows for most of the night - Jimmy Butler had 8 points in 23 minutes before leaving with an apparent injury after a collision with Collin Sexton; Lauri Markkanen was in single digits most of the game until hitting a 3-pointer late in the 4th to finish with 12 points on the night.

Keyonte George answered the bell in the 4th, hitting 3-pointers and layups to open the lead for the Jazz. He finished with 21 points and 6 rebounds in 28 minutes off the bench. It was great to see him confident and aggressive in his best game since coming back from the ankle injury.

The final was Utah 117, Miami 109.

Collin Sexton kept the Jazz in the game throughout, with 22 points and 5 assists.

Kelly Olynyk had another great all-around night, with 19 points, 6 rebounds and 10 assists.

Simone Fontecchio had 12 points and 7 rebounds, played good defense and made some nice drives to the basket when his 3 ball wasn't falling.

John Collins had 10 points, but his rebounding and defense were crucial at times to keeping the game in hand for the Jazz, even if it didn't show up in the box score.

The Utah Jazz moved to 10-0 in games where they have 6 players or more in double figures (they had 7 tonight).

The Jazz will face the Dallas Mavericks on Monday night in Salt Lake City, then the Detroit Pistons on Wednesday. The Jazz have won 7 of their last 10 games and have a good chance to continue that over the next few games at home.

Will Hardy is right, the Utah Jazz are looking better these days.. dark. Next. Will Hardy knows something about the Jazz