Despite trailing by as much as 13 points late in the second quarter, the Utah Jazz battled back to win 114-106 over the Golden State Warriors. Bojan Bogdanovic went 8 of 13 on his 3-pointers alone en route to a game-high 32 points. Those eight triple by the way tied a Jazz record with Rodney Hood (2016), Raja Bell (2013) and Jeff Hornacek (1994).
The comeback started in the final two minutes of the second quarter, shortly after Golden State took its largest lead. Utah battled back to pull within seven points at halftime 56-49. Then, a dominant 37-28 third quarter, led by nine points (on three triples) from Bogdanovic and another four field goals from Donovan Mitchell, who ended the game with 28 points.
Utah still very much could have lost as the game went back-and-forth in the final minutes of the fourth quarter. Jacob Evans gave the Warriors a 104-103 lead with 2:12 remaining on a pair of free throws, but then Bogdanovic did what he did all night: make it rain.
*smashes keyboard in croatian* pic.twitter.com/RLoBoDxPFQ— Utah Jazz (@utahjazz) December 14, 2019
Mitchell added an exclamation point to Bogdanovic’s statement by draining a triple on the very next Jazz possession after a defensive stop. With a five-point lead, 109-104 and just over 90 seconds remaining, Utah simply rode it out with defense and safe offense.
Rational Reaction: Bojan is *still* a life-saver
Maybe this belongs as an under-reaction given how much it has been said this season. But were it not for the fact that, in his age 30 season, Bogdanovic is playing the best basketball of his career, things would be soooooo bad.
This game solidified that fact even further. The eight triples, climbing to the top of single-game shooting performances among anyone in a Jazz uniform, is simply amazing.
Overreaction: Donovan’s playing the point better than Conley
Is this an overreaction? At face value you could say that given Mitchell is averaging 26.8 points, 4.6 boards and 4.0 assists as the starting point guard in Conley’s absence. Though, to be fair, Mitchell has averaged similar numbers (24.9/4.8/3.7) this whole season.
It’s tricky to say something like this definitely. But since I’m still in the camp that claims Mitchell would be better as a full-time point guard, of course I’m bringing this up. The front office put just about all of its eggs in the Mitchell shooting guard basket, but it’s clear the offense can be fairly good when asked to play point.
Under-reaction: The Jazz should not have had to come back in this game
Playing a bad game, heck, winning a bad game isn’t anything to really worry about. But given the context of recent weeks, this is just another thing that will have fans worrying and coaches pouring over film to try and figure out exactly how to turn this season from above average to the spectacular year expected when preseason rolled around.
Problems remain for the Jazz and climbing out of a 13 point-hole to a Warriors team that now sits at 5-22 and firmly in last place in the entire NBA is nothing to be proud of.
But at least they did. And that counts for something.