Without Donovan Mitchell, the Jazz needed other players to step up and the Jazz gave a great team effort to overpower the Spurs.
To get the win Utah needed even more dominance from Rudy Gobert and that’s what he did. Gobert was a +11 and had a solid stat line of 16 points, 13 rebounds and 3 blocks. Gobert patrolled the paint on defense with his DPOY level play and it helped give the Jazz enough defense to keep the Spurs at bay for most of the game.
Having Gobert is a luxury on nights like tonight but the Jazz had to find other perimeter options, especially since it was clear the Spurs were trying to negate Gobert as much as possible. They got those contributions from multiple guys. Bojan Bogdanovic scored 19 with efficiency from two but struggled from three going 1/7. Mike Conley controlled the offense but his shots weren’t falling at a high rate. Jordan Clarkson poured in 23 points with 8 rebounds and 5 assists. His 3-point shot isn’t falling at a high rate this season but it’s been impressive to see how he’s improved as a playmaker and as a rebounder recently. Clarkson is recognizing double teams really well and he’s finding open shooters whether it’s Gobert or Whiteside inside or around the 3-point line with open shooters. Finally, a lot of credit goes to Joe Ingles who, yet again, played very well with the starters. Ingles shot 6/10 from the field and 4/7 from three. I don’t know what happens to Joe Ingles going from bench to starter that makes him so much better, but it’s great almost every time.
It also felt like the Jazz defense was better tonight. It could just be that the Spurs shot overly well last game, but the 3-point shot wasn’t falling for the Spurs at the same level (33%). It could also be that they were sorely missing DeJounte Murray. Last game against the Jazz he had a triple-double with 16 points, 11 rebounds, and 11 assists leaving the Spurs with a major vacuum of production.
All in all, getting a win on the road minus Donovan Mitchell is always going to be impressive. Utah being able to rest their young star so he can be healthy and still get wins is a massive luxury and a testament to how much talent is on the team.