JOE Ingles continued his fine shooting form with back-to-back three pointers to seal the win for Utah.
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AUSSIES IN ACTION
Dante Exum was in action again with the Utah Jazz, playing eight minutes off the bench, finishing with one assist, 1-4 in field goals and 0-2 in three-pointers. Aussie Jazz teammate Joe Ingles had a perfect game on the other hand sinking all of his field goal and three-point attempts for eight points, two rebounds, and one assist in 11 minutes. His back-to-back three-pointers in the final minute locked up the win over Orlando.
Andrew Bogut’s season suffered another blow with the Australian centre ruled out indefinitely because of a hamstring injury. Bogut suffered a strain in his right hamstring in last Monday’s 19-point loss to Minnesota. And while Dallas coach Rick Carlisle said the injury wasn’t overly serious, he couldn’t put a time on how long the 32-year-old would be out.
“He’s probably out for the foreseeable near future,” Carlisle said.
“We don’t consider this serious. But we want to make sure that he’s not only feeling good, but he’s got (to have) his legs under him a little bit before we put him back out there.”
UTAH JAZZ 114 — ORLANDO MAGIC 107
Gordon Hayward scored 23 points to help the Utah Jazz beat the Orlando Magic 114-107 on Saturday night, a victory tempered by the loss of Rodney Hood to what looked like a serious knee injury with 2:54 remaining. On a fast break after Rudy Gobert blocked Nikola Vucevic’s shot, Hood was hurt when his right knee buckled as he went up for a layup. Hood screamed in pain and clutched the knee immediately upon falling, and had to be assisted from the floor. He barely put weight on the leg as he exited the court to the locker room. Gobert added 19 points and 19 rebounds for Utah. Hood had 14 points. Joe Ingles made two 3-pointers in the final 1:07 to wrap up the victory.
The Magic led 102-97 after Aaron Gordon’s 3-pointer and Elfrid Payton’s driving layup with 3:54 to play, but the Jazz scored 13 straight points en route to their fourth victory in five games. Orlando has lost five of six. Payton had a career-high 28 points and added nine rebounds and nine assists. Despite their reputation as one of the league’s most formidable defensive teams, the Jazz provided little resistance to the Magic drives throughout most of the game, especially Payton’s flashes to the basket. The Magic scored 42 points in the opening period, a season high for any quarter, and led by as many as 15 points.
CHICAGO BULLS 107 — NEW ORLEANS PELICANS 99
Jimmy Butler’s health and the Bulls’ play this week coincided for different reasons.
Butler scored 28 points in his return from the flu, and Dwyane Wade had 17 of his 22 points in the fourth quarter in the Chicago Bulls’ 107-99 victory over the New Orleans Pelicans on Saturday. The Bulls desperately needed Butler back after losing their previous three games while he struggled with the flu. He didn’t play in two games and was limited Monday night against Oklahoma City.
After the Pelicans cut a 15-point second-half deficit to one point early in the fourth, Wade scored six straight points to push the advantage to 85-80. Wade made it 89-82 with a 3-pointer, and spun off a defender to convert a three-point play for a 102-91 lead with 2:27 left. Taj Gibson added 15 points and 16 rebounds to help the Bulls snap a three-game losing streak. The Bulls outrebounded the Pelicans 63-42. Anthony Davis had 36 points, 14 rebounds and three blocks for New Orleans. The Pelicans won two straight on the road.
Butler didn’t show any fatigue early on by scoring 19 points in the first half as the Bulls led 55-45 at the half.
Davis, who missed New Orleans’ victory at Brooklyn on Thursday night because of a sore left hip, had 13 points, five rebounds and three blocks in the half.
The Bulls extended the lead early in second half. Butler threw down a dunk, then on a break, Wade set up Butler for a layup that made it 63-48.
Former Bull E’Twaun Moore kept the Pelicans in the game in the second half. His 3-pointer cut the lead to 66-60, and kept them within six at the end of the third quarter with another 3. He was 4 for 5 from 3-point range and scored 16 points.
PHOENIX SUNS 108 — SAN ANTONIO SPURS 105
Devin Booker scored a career-high 39 points for the second straight game in Mexico City and the Phoenix Suns beat the San Antonio Spurs 108-105 on Saturday in the fifth regular-season game in the country. Booker was 12 of 22 from the field, and Eric Bledsoe added 17 points and 10 assists. Coming off a loss to Dallas in their Mexican opener Thursday night, the Suns overcame an 11-point deficit to snap a two-game losing streak. Kawhi Leonard had 38 points for the Spurs (31-9). Booker made two baskets to give the Suns the lead in the last minute, including a dunk off a break with Bledsoe to put them ahead 106-103. Leonard made two free throws to get San Antonio within one. P.J. Tucker made two free throws, and the Spurs’ Danny Green missed an open 3-pointer to seal the win for Phoenix. Phoenix is the first team to play two regular-season games in the same season south of the border.
LA CLIPPERS 113 — LA LAKERS 97
DeAndre Jordan was getting the ball just where he likes it, and the big man known for his lousy free throw shooting only had to go to the line once. Jordan scored 24 points on 12-of-13 shooting, and the Los Angeles Clippers shot 52 per cent to cruise past the Lakers 113-97 on Saturday and improve to 6-0 in 2017. Jordan came flying to make his eight dunks, including a two-handed jam on the game’s opening possession. He didn’t need to post anyone up around the basket, which irked rookie Lakers coach Luke Walton. Jordan’s shooting was nearly perfect; he tipped in his own miss with 4:41 remaining in the game. He missed his lone free throw attempt.
He had 21 rebounds — 18 on the defensive glass — among the Clippers’ 42 rebounds.
Chris Paul added 20 points and 13 assists for the Clippers, off to their best start since going 7-0 to begin 1974 when the franchise was located in Buffalo. Their streak is the longest active one in the NBA.
The Clippers shot 52 per cent and are 15-0 when they do so. Led by Jordan, they had a season-high 56 points in the paint. Jordan Clarkson scored 21 points for the Lakers, who never led in losing their third in a row and seventh in 10 games. The Lakers, who shot 44 per cent, never made a run in the fourth. The Lakers cut their deficit from 19 points to 10 in the third. After an unsportsmanlike technical for hanging on the rim, Timofey Mozgov dunked to launch a 9-2 run that included consecutive 3-pointers by Brandon Ingram and Nick Young and got the Lakers to 69-59. The Clippers closed with a 15-9 spurt that sent them into the fourth leading 84-68. Jordan had two more dunks, both one-handers.
WASHINGTON WIZARDS 109 — PHILADELPHIA 76ERS 93
John Wall had 25 points, seven rebounds and seven assists, Bradley Beal added 20 points and the Washington Wizards used a second-half spurt to beat the Philadelphia 76ers 109-93 on Saturday night.
The 76ers had won three straight for the first time in more than three years. They played without rookie star Joel Embiid. He sat out to rest after scoring 24 points Thursday night against Charlotte. Philadelphia raced to an early 13-point lead, but the Wizards outscored Philadelphia 24-11 in the final minutes of the first half for a 56-all halftime tie. Washington scored seven straight to start the second half and a 10-0 run gave it a 77-62 lead with 3:37 left in the third quarter.
Jahlil Okafor, who hadn’t played in the last three games, had a season-high 26 points for the 76ers. The Wizards have won 11 straight at home.