SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Jazz powered ahead in the second quarter and answered every late challenge in beating the Minnesota Timberwolves 116-108 at Vivint Arena on Friday night.
Turning point: After Minnesota cut its deficit to 94-92 midway through the fourth quarter, the Jazz went on an 11-2 run to create some separation. That included four Ricky Rubio free throws — two coming off a Jeff Teague Flagrant 2 foul — a 3-pointer from Jae Crowder and a pair of buckets from Donovan Mitchell.
The hero: Rudy Gobert paced the Jazz with 26 points, 16 rebounds and four blocked, while Mitchell added 26 points on 10 of 18 shooting.
- Utah outrebounded Minnesota 45-27 and had a 19-0 edge in second-chance points.
- The Jazz outshot the T'Wolves 55 percent to 41.2 percent in the second quarter. In the period, Utah outscored Minnesota 33-21, including a 20-6 run to end the first half.
- The Jazz had 21 assists to 14 for the Timberwolves.
Playoff picture: 10th place, two games back of Denver in 8th
Saturday at Sacramento (19-43), 8 p.m. (AT&T SportsNet RM)
Monday vs. Orlando (19-43), 7 p.m. (AT&T SportsNet RM)
Wednesday at Indiana (35-27), 5 p.m. (AT&T SportsNet RM)