NBA: Gobert, Jazz overpower Trail Blazers
Rudy Gobert scored 20 points and collected 17 rebounds to lead the visiting Utah Jazz to a 120-100 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers on Wednesday night in the season opener for both teams.
Donovan Mitchell added 20 points, and five other Jazz players scored in double figures. Utah never trailed after the first quarter and led by double digits throughout the second half.
CJ McCollum scored 23 points to lead Portland. Carmelo Anthony added 15 points and Enes Kanter chipped in 14 points and eight rebounds for the Blazers.
The Jazz outshot the Blazers from the floor 45.7 percent to 40.2 percent and finished with a 59-40 advantage in rebounds.
Portland jumped out to a 17-11 lead on the strength of two 3-pointers apiece from McCollum and Derrick Jones Jr. However, the Blazers could not stay in front once Utah found its footing after a few rough early minutes.
The Jazz heated up on offense as the first half progressed. Utah went 13 of 28 from 3-point range before halftime and shot 48 percent from the field overall during the first two quarters. The 13 made 3-pointers tied a franchise record for most made treys in the first half of a game.
Utah took control on a 21-5 run ignited by back-to-back 3-pointers from Bojan Bogdanovic and Jordan Clarkson. The Jazz closed out the run by scoring on three straight possessions, culminating in a basket from Gobert that put Utah up 32-22.
The Jazz used another huge run to extend their lead in the second quarter. Bogdanovic made a pair of 3-pointers and Mitchell drove for a pair of layups to highlight a 20-4 run that gave Utah a 54-33 lead midway through the quarter.
Blazers star Damian Lillard went scoreless in the first half, going 0-of-5 from the field. He dished out five assists in the opening two quarters, but Portland shot just 35.6 percent from the field before halftime. Lillard ended the night with nine points.
Utah did not ease off in the third quarter, leading by as many as 31 points and taking a 26-point edge into the final period.
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