Tue, 31 Mar 2020

Celtics pull away from Jazz

Field Level Media
27 Feb 2020, 16:19 GMT+10

Marcus Smart and Enes Kanter combined for all of Boston's scoring in a 15-5 burst to start the fourth quarter Wednesday night as the Celtics, on the second night of a back-to-back set, had enough depth and energy to outfinish the Utah Jazz 114-103 in Salt Lake City.

Jayson Tatum had 33 points and a game-high 11 rebounds to pace the Celtics, who won three of four on their Western swing, losing only a two-point decision Sunday against the Los Angeles Lakers.

Donovan Mitchell poured in a game-high 37 points for the Jazz, who lost their fourth straight, all at home.

In the first meeting of the season between teams solidly entrenched in their respective playoff races, the Celtics and Jazz played on even terms for 35 1/2 minutes before Gordon Hayward buried a 3-pointer to give the visitors an 85-82 lead after three quarters.

Boston never trailed again.

Kanter opened the fourth period with two hoops, including the tip-in of a Brad Wanamaker miss, before Smart nailed three consecutive 3-pointers, sandwiching a pair of hoops by Utah's Jordan Clarkson, to help the Celtics take command.

When Kanter turned a Smart assist into a basket with 7:22 remaining in the game, the Celtics suddenly held a 100-87 advantage.

Utah got no closer than eight after that.

Tatum was the Celtics' driving force for the better part of three periods. He shot 13-for-20 overall and 3-for-5 on 3-point attempts to cap a remarkable trip on which he scored 28, 41, 36 and 33 points.

Jaylen Brown added 20 points, Smart finished with a game-high nine assists to complement 17 points, and Daniel Theis chipped in with 16 points and seven rebounds for the Celtics, who were swept by the Jazz in the season series last year.

In his second return to Utah after playing his first seven seasons for the Jazz, Hayward contributed 12 points and five rebounds to the win.

The Celtics, who won 118-106 at Portland on Tuesday, outshot the Jazz 53.6 percent to 44.9 percent.

Mitchell's point total came on 15-of-32 shooting. He made just two of his 10 3-point attempts.

Mike Conley went for 15 points and Royce O'Neale 14 for Utah, which is now 1-4 on a six-game homestand that ends Friday against the Washington Wizards.

Jazz center Rudy Gobert grabbed a team-high nine rebounds to go with nine points.

--Field Level Media

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