by Harry Porter | The Jazz lined up against the Dallas Mavericks with a plethora of stars missing from the pivotal matchup. The Mavs are locked into the seventh seed in the West and rested Luka Dončić, Kristaps Porziņģis and Dorian Finney-Smith. Donovan Mitchell did not suit up for the Jazz because of a leg injury. While this game lacked star power, it remained competitive through the final buzzer.
In the first quarter, the Jazz got off to a hot start behind back-to-back three pointers for Jordan Clarkson, a three from Joe Ingles and a nifty up-and-under from Rudy Gobert. The Mavs found some early success with high screens from Boban Marjanović and poor defensive rotations from the Jazz leading to wide-open baskets inside the paint. The Mavs went on an 11-2 midway during the first and the Jazz lacked intensity. Emmanuel Mudiay looked aggressive by driving to the hoop from the moment he entered the game. The Jazz finished the quarter with a franchise-record nine three pointers and only committed one turnover during the period.
The Jazz started the second quarter with two straight turnovers before Emmanuel Mudiay dropped a sleek backdoor dime to Tony Bradley for a slam-dunk. The Jazz and Mavs traded baskets during the second quarter and the Jazz finished the half up 70-56. Joe Ingles had seven assists, the bench dropped 27 points and Jordan Clarkson had 18 points in a starting role in place of the injured Donovan Mitchell.
Miye Oni started off the third quarter with more aggressiveness in looking for his shot compared to the first half. Oni immediately hit a three-pointer followed by a vicious dunk. Rayjon Tucker provided some quality minutes off the bench and showcased his vision with a mid-air, crosscourt pass to set up a three-pointer for Mudiay. The Mavs went on an 11-2 run and a 9-0 run to finish the quarter 100-97 with Utah still in the lead.
In the fourth quarter, the Jazz’s defense completely collapsed and turnovers started to pile up on the offensive end. The bench primarily played the second half and Rayjon Tucker hit three crucial free throws to cut the Mavs’ lead to 111-109 with three minutes left in the quarter. With all of the starters sitting, the lack of late-game execution and experience was evident for the second unit. Utah dropped its third straight game after losing 122-114 to the Dallas Mavericks.
There were a lot of positives to takeaway from this game. The Jazz connected on 21 three-pointers, Rayjon Tucker scored 17 points in 28 minutes and the bench scored 68 of Utah’s 114 points.
Look for my preview for the Jazz’s last game against the San Antonio Spurs where I will outline different playoff seeding scenarios for the Jazz.
Featured image via DallasNews.com.