The Jazz came out strong in a game where they were heavily labeled as the underdogs by Vegas.
Hair Gordon wasted no time getting to double figures and your favorite Jazzy ballers had themselves all tied up 27-27 after the first quarter.
The 2nd unit of the Jazz then brought more of a walloping in the form of a 8-0 run to start the 2nd quarter. They could have ran away with the game at that point if they hadn't already commited 10 turnovers by the 7:00 minute mark of the 2nd quarter. Yikes! Luckily some ice cold Thunder shooting and/or possible signs of life of the Jazz defense (aka Gobert and friends) helped keep the Jazz ahead for the majority of the first half.
Ingles then went down for what appeared to be an awkward landing after a rebound.
This gave the Thunder hope midway through the 2nd quarter before amazing highlight worthy plays by Gobert and Booker helped quickly kill their momentum going into halftime!
<iframe class="vine-embed" src="https://vine.co/v/OpUmphtZYBV/embed/simple" width="600" height="600" frameborder="0"></iframe><script async src="//platform.vine.co/static/scripts/embed.js" charset="utf-8"></script>
<iframe class="vine-embed" src="https://vine.co/v/OpUKLFDqYae/embed/simple" width="600" height="600" frameborder="0"></iframe><script async src="//platform.vine.co/static/scripts/embed.js" charset="utf-8"></script>
After those magnificent plays, the Jazz found themselves with a highly respectable 50-44 lead at halftime on the road against a dark horse team who have are a serious threat to make the Western Conference Finals year. Not bad after coming off of a win of the best teams in the East.
What was on the line this game is the Jazz's chance to win 3 games in a row on the road for the first time since March 2013!
The 3rd quarter was an epic tug-of-war with the Thunder refusing to go away, despite solid games from Hayward (24points through 3 quarters) and Favors (18 points through 3 quarters) at this point. But the Jazz, stayed right there finishing the 3rd down 75-76.
Gobert also had a more than impressive 7-6-4-3-3 statline at the end of the 3rd quarter, elevating the hopes of many fans clamoring for the rare feat commonly known as the 5 by 5. But alas, it wasn't meant to be. If it's any consolation Hayward and Gobert combined for an otherworldly statline of: 30-11-7-7-6...
The 4th quarter was exciting but to the Jazz's detriment. The Thunder were playing down by a couple points to the Jazz for most of the quarter, only for them to make it a 1 point game with a minute to go, and Waiters with the painful eventual gameclinching shot for the Thunder to put them up by 4 with 23 seconds to go.
This game was lost in the final 2 minutes, but it's not all bad news. The Jazz played solid in many facets overall, but the 20 turnovers killed them, the 68% FT shooting killed them, allowing the new Thunder core of KD,RW, Ibaka, and Waiters to drop 84 points on you killed them...
The positives tonight:
Gobert shows that he has the potential to be the next AK-47, at least in 5-by-5 potential, finishing with 4 points, 7 boards, 3 assists, 3 steals, and 7 BLOCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
3 Jazz players finish with at least 20+ points (Hayward, Favors, Burke)
Favors and Gobert is proving to be an effective combination
The good version of Burke appears to be back for his 3rd game in a row
Favors had his 3rd straight game of 20+ points, not bad for a defender.
Jazz are playing competetive on the road against solid teams now while being down their top 3 options for shooting guard (Burks, Hood,
Overall, this was a very exciting game to watch despite the outcome, if you have a chance to rewatch, by all means go for it. Great play from Favors, Hayward, Gobert, Burke, and even some key moments from Booker and Millsap made this feel like some classic Jazz basketball all over again.
Keep improving Jazz, this is going to be and already is a fun team to watch!