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Jazz extend win streak to five with win over Trail Blazers

Sportsnaut
Dec 29, 2021; Portland, Oregon, USA; Portland Trail Blazers guard Anfernee Simons (1) fouls Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert (27) during the first half at Moda Center. Mandatory Credit: Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 29, 2021; Portland, Oregon, USA; Portland Trail Blazers guard Anfernee Simons (1) fouls Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert (27) during the first half at Moda Center. Mandatory Credit: Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports

Rudy Gobert scored 22 points and grabbed 14 rebounds and Rudy Gay netted 21 points to lead the visiting Utah Jazz to a 120-105 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers on Wednesday night.

Six Jazz players scored 15 or more points and the team shot 52.9 percent from the field to win its fifth straight game overall and run its record to 7-0 on the road.

Damian Lillard and Norman Powell each fired in 32 points for Portland, but Larry Nance Jr. (14 points) was the only other Blazer to reach double figures for the short-handed squad that has dropped three games in a row.

The Blazers, who never led and trailed by as many as 22 points, were without two coaches, including Portland head coach Chauncey Billups, and seven players who are all in the NBA’s health and safety protocols.

Utah’s bench came up big on a night the team’s leading scorer, Donovan Mitchell, was sidelined with a back injury.

Along with Gay, who hit eight of 13 shots and grabbed six rebounds, Jordan Clarkson totaled 19 points, five assists and four rebounds, and former Blazer big Hassan Whiteside collected a double-double of 15 points and 11 rebounds.

In all, the Jazz bench outscored the Blazers’ backups 59-22.

Gobert put the first points on the scoreboard with a dunk, foreshadowing a dominating night inside for the Jazz. Utah outscored Portland 74-30 in the paint.

Bojan Bogdanovic got off to a hot start, quickly scoring eight of his 15 points to boost the Jazz to a 16-3 lead almost six minutes into the game. Lillard helped Portland surge to within five, 25-20, with a 3-pointer, but Gobert and Clarkson finished the quarter with consecutive dunks for a 36-27 lead.

Despite 13 points in the second quarter by Powell, the Jazz built their lead up to 16 before settling for a 10-point advantage at the break.

Gobert dominated the interior to open the fourth, scoring six straight Jazz points to give Utah a 107-87 lead with 7:26 remaining.

Utah improved to 5-0 vs. Northwest Division opponents and 15-3 in Western Conference action.

–Field Level Media