Donovan Mitchell pours in 33 as Jazz survive Mavs’ rally
Donovan Mitchell scored 33 points to lead the Utah Jazz to a 120-116 victory over the Dallas Mavericks in the NBA’s Christmas Day nightcap Saturday in Salt Lake City.
Bojan Bogdanovic added 25 points, including four 3-pointers, Mike Conley contributed 22 points, seven rebounds and five assists, and Rudy Gobert tallied 10 points with 11 rebounds as the Jazz won their third straight game.
Kristaps Porzingis, playing after missing two games with a sore right foot, and Jalen Brunson each scored 27 points to help the Mavericks make a game of it despite missing Luka Doncic and a handful of other players due to COVID-19.
Dallas took it to Utah early on, going ahead 22-9 after a Dwight Powell dunk capped an 18-4 run. Charlie Brown Jr. gave the Mavericks their biggest lead, 30-14, with a dunk moments later.
33 for @spidadmitchell.
3 straight for the @utahjazz.
Donovan Mitchell was locked in on #NBAXmas pic.twitter.com/wgsQ7qcTjo
— NBA (@NBA) December 26, 2021
Conley ignited a 9-0 run with a 3-pointer, followed by a pair of free throws, later in the first quarter, and then fueled an 11-2 spurt at the beginning of the second quarter, with back-to-back treys that tied the score at 36.
Utah led 65-63 lead at the break.
After Dallas pushed ahead again after halftime, the Jazz needed a 15-6 run at the end of the third quarter to pull even again at 90.
The Mavericks fought back to go up 93-90 after a 3-pointer by Sterling Brown.
Gobert converted a layup on the Jazz’s next possession, sparking a 12-1 run and Utah’s biggest lead to that point at 102-94. The Jazz center then gave his team its first double-digit lead, 107-97, on a beautifully executed reverse alley-oop dunk off of a pass from Mitchell.
Dallas wasn’t done, though. Led by a pair of 3-pointers from Brunson, the Mavericks scored eight straight to make it close heading down the stretch.
Utah later put together a 6-0 run to go up 115-107 with 2:01 left.
Mitchell made the building erupt by making an off-balance layup while being fouled. The additional free throw gave the Jazz a nine-point lead with 1:23 left, and Utah held on to earn its sixth Christmas Day win in eight tries.
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