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‘Playoff P’ (Paul George) leads OKC Thunder to win over Utah Jazz

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Despite a big night from Donovan Mitchell, Utah falls to “Playoff P”.

NBA: Playoffs-Utah Jazz at Oklahoma City Thunder Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Postgame


Fourth Quarter

Oklahoma City Thunder 116 - Utah Jazz 108

Playoff AB made a late appearance in garbage time and made it everything but garbage time. The Thunder are breathing a sigh of relief, but AB’s late game tear made the Thunder have to keep their starters in for the rest of the game while Quin Snyder was able to rest his to fight another day. Alec Burks finished with 10 points in only 2 minutes.

Donovan Mitchell went down with a toe injury, Rudy Gobert was beasted by Steven Adams, Playoff P lit up the Utah Jazz defense. The Utah Jazz reserves checked back in and made a run to make the final score look less like a blowout, but Utah is going to have a lot to review. Utah will need every last minute of rest between tonight and the next game so that Donovan Mitchell is able to go in Game 2. Donovan Mitchell finished the game with 27 points, 10 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals, and one sore toe.

One thing that we might want to look at is Dante Exum was the only one besides Alec Burks’ 4th quarter LOL breakout and Jae Crowder who could manufacture points for Utah. If Royce is getting completely taken out of the game offensively, Utah can’t afford for him to be on the court. Quin might have to make a deal with the devil and play Burks and Exum more. Does he sign his soul away?


Third Quarter

Oklahoma City Thunder 79- Utah Jazz 72

The OKC Thunder had multiple chances to blow the doors right off of this thing, but just couldn’t get separation. “Playoff P” hit a three pointer at the end of the 3rd quarter cap another strong run. Paul George had 11 points in the 3rd quarter for a total of 31 points in the game. The Utah Jazz have to figure out a way to slow him down to have success in this game. Somehow Utah is not out of this despite the offensive rebounds surrendered, the turnovers, and careless fouls.

Donovan Mitchell is having a game we’d be proud of Gordon Hayward having last year. Donovan Mitchell as a rookie has 23 points and 10 rebounds, a double-double as a rookie. Following suit of Ben Simmons playoff game. Unfortunately for Donovan Mitchell, he plays in the Western Conference where the competition is stiffer. Do the Jazz have it in them to go on a run and reclaim the lead? We’ll see. They’ll need Rudy Gobert to have a defensive masterpiece in the 4th quarter and for someone other than Donovan to come up big.


2nd Quarter

OKC Thunder 54 - Utah Jazz 48

The Utah Jazz have come back to earth. The Utah Jazz have had trouble manufacturing points outside of Ricky Rubio in the second. Rubio has a game high 12 field goal attempts while shooting 4-12. Utah’s bench has been getting mobbed and the Thunder are slowly imposing their will on this Utah team. Call it nerves, call it being outgunned, whatever you call it, the Utah Jazz are not playing their brand of basketball.

The Utah Jazz are missing the Joe Ingles led pick and rolls. The Utah Jazz’s bench has an average +/- of -7.5 while the starters (save Derrick Favors) all have a +/- of 0 or above. Quin Snyder is going to need to make some adjustments and get the Jazz back into the flow of the game. The Jazz were slicing and dicing the Thunder to start the game. Utah has had a lot of success when they went to the hoop. Jazz are settling for looks outside. They need to go to the hoop and force this Thunder team to rotate on defense. They’re not making it hard for OKC.

“Playoff P” (Paul George) has made an appearance and already has 20 points in this game. I watched Paul George a lot during my time in Indiana, and he was a beast in the playoffs. Carmelo Anthony is cooking.


1st Quarter

Utah got off to hot start leading the OKC Thunder at one point 12-2. OKC got back in it and made it a game. This is going to be some series. Donovan Mitchell was the hottest thing in Oklahoma since ... I’m going to go with ... corn dogs? Anyway, good game going on so far.

Game Info:

When: Sunday, Apr. 15, 2018 • 4:30 PM MT

Where: Moda Center • Portland, OR

TV: TNT, TNTOT, AT&T Sports Net - Rocky Mountain

Radio: 1280 AM The Zone, ESPN Radio

Injuries:

Utah Jazz:

Thabo Sefolosha - MCL avulsion - out for the season

Oklahoma City Thunder:

Corey Brewer - Knee - Day to Day

Alex Abrines - Concussion Protocol - Day to Day

Andre Roberson - Knee - Out for season


Ground Rules

Welcome to the SLC Dunk Live Thread. This is new as we’ll have game updates throughout it. Dunkers know how this thing works, but for you lurkers ready to make the jump to Dunker, we have a few guidelines. Remember to follow our community guidelines (no swearing, trolling, excessive use of Jerry Sloan’s name in vain, no personal attacks, no debates about Utah liquor laws, etc.). Remember to have fun. Anyone who dare blasphemes that Tim Duncan was a Power Forward or John Stockton is not the best point guard of all-time will receive an automatic ban. Just kidding. But seriously.