Despite having blown a 25-point lead in Game 5 of their playoff series Wednesday night against the Oklahoma City Thunder on the road, the Utah Jazz still had a chance to come away with the win even if all the momentum had shifted to the Thunder.
Nevertheless, Oklahoma City made the necessary plays down the stretch to claim the victory. In particular, a 10-2 run from the home team in the middle of the fourth quarter did the Jazz in.
Following a Rudy Gobert putback dunk with 6:40 remaining, the Jazz led by a point, 91-90. Russell Westbrook, however, responded 30 seconds later with his fifth 3-pointer of the second half to give the Thunder the 93-91 edge.
Alex Abrines then blocked Donovan Mitchell near the rim, Westbrook started the fast break and found Abrines in the corner for an open 3-pointer.
Swish — and the Oklahoma City lead was up to five, 96-91.
After Mitchell drove again to the basket and this time got a layup to cut the deficit to three, Rudy Gobert stymied a Paul George attempt at the rim and Utah had a chance to tie things up, but a Jae Crowder 3-point attempt missed.
Westbrook sank an open jumper on the other end of the floor, and the Thunder lead was back up to five.
On the Jazz’s ensuing possession, Crowder found Gobert for what would have been an easy dunk, but Gobert passed the ball out to a wide-open Donovan Mitchell for a 3-point try, which missed, and Westbrook made another jumper on the other end of the floor.
Suddenly the Oklahoma City lead was seven, 100-93. In all, it was a 10-2 run in just about two minutes of game time.
Ricky Rubio did cut the deficit to five with a midrange jump shot on Utah’s next possession, but after a failed possession from both teams, George made a jumper to put the Thunder back up by seven, 102-95.
The Jazz scored four straight points to get to within three with 2:23 remaining, but those would be the last points Utah would score on the night, as George made a tough 3-pointer on the next possession and Mitchell missed one with 1:50 remaining.
Westbrook scored the final points of the night on a midrange jumper with 1:24 left.