SALT LAKE CITY — With their backs against the playoff wall, the Utah Jazz followed the lead of their second-year star guard to a 107-91 win over the Houston Rockets in Game 4 of their playoff series Monday night at Vivint Arena.
Donovan Mitchell scored 19 of his game-high 31 points in the fourth quarter as the Jazz forced a Game 5 on Wednesday night in Houston. The Rockets lead the series 3-1.
Here are three takeaways from the game.
- Utah watched a one-time 14-point lead dwindle away before Houston took the lead in the third quarter. The Jazz had the answer, though, with a 15-1 run to start the fourth quarter that essentially put the game away for Utah. Mitchell scored 13 of those points, including three 3-pointers.
- The Rockets made 17 of 46 3-pointers on the night, including eight in the third quarter, but Houston missed its final 13 3-point attempts. The Rockets, by comparison, only shot 33 2-point attempts, making 11.
- The Jazz got big contributions from several players. Jae Crowder had 23 points, including 18 in the first half, while Ricky Rubio added a double-double with 18 points and 11 assists. Two Utah players also came off the bench for double-doubles — Derrick Favors had 12 points and 11 rebounds, including a pair of late putbacks, while Royce O’Neale had 11 points and 11 rebounds.
Here is a quarter-by-quarter recap of the game.
Donovan Mitchell scored 13 of his points during a decisive early fourth quarter run as the Utah Jazz beat the Houston Rockets 107-91 in Game 4 of their playoff series on Monday night at Vivint Arena.
After the Rockets turned a six-point halftime deficit into a 79-76 lead heading into the final period, Mitchell hit three 3-pointers during a 15-1 Jazz run to start the fourth to build a 91-80 lead, and Utah held off Houston from there.
The Jazz outscored the Rockets 31-12 in the final period.
The win cuts Houston’s lead in the series to 3-1. Game 5 is Wednesday night in Houston.
The Rockets turned to the 3-ball to take the lead over the Jazz in the third quarter, as Houston scored 24 of its 32 points in the period from 3-point range.
The Rockets led by as many as five points in the quarter before taking a 79-76 lead into the final period. Eric Gordon and James Harden each hit three 3-pointers in the period to lead Houston, while the Jazz hit four 3-pointers in the quarter, including two from Royce O’Neale.
Harden leads all players with 25 points, while Jae Crowder has 23 for Utah.
The Jazz continued to play very well defensively in the second quarter and led by as many as 12 before the Rockets closed well to trail by just six heading into halftime, 53-47.
Most notably, Houston made two 3-pointers and James Harden connected with Clint Capela for an alley-oop in the final three minutes to close the gap.
At halftime, Jae Crowder leads all scorers with 18 points. Harden leads Houston with 13.
FIRST QUARTER5 comments on this story
Like it did in last Saturday, an energized Utah Jazz squad came out strong on Monday night in Game 4 of its playoff series against the Houston Rockets at Vivint Arena and leads 32-24 at the end of the first quarter.
The Jazz led 30-16 with three minutes remaining as Jae Crowder and Ricky Rubio combined for 25 points. As a team, Utah shot 50 percent from the field and 50 percent from behind the 3-point line in the quarter and the Rockets committed five turnovers.
The Jazz offense did stall in the closing minutes of the quarter, however, as Houston used an 8-0 run to get to within six at 30-24 before Donovan scored the final two points of the frame.