NBA regular season

Jazz alone atop West after whipping Spurs

Jazz alone atop West after whipping Spurs

TAKE CHARGE. Jazz guard Jordan Clarkson soars for a shot against Spurs guard Devin Vassell.

Photo by Chris Nicoll/USA TODAY Sports/Reuters

An efficient Jordan Clarkson makes another case for the Sixth Man award as the Jazz reclaim the solo best record

Jordan Clarkson pumped in 30 points and Bojan Bogdanovic chipped in 24 as the Utah Jazz crushed the San Antonio Spurs, 126-94, on Wednesday night, May 5 (Thursday, May 6, Manila time) in Salt Lake City for their third consecutive win.

Combined with the Atlanta Hawks’ 135-103 win over the Phoenix Suns, Utah regained first place in the Western Conference and the top record in the NBA.

The Jazz (48-18) are now up a game on the Suns (47-19) with six games remaining in the regular season.

San Antonio (31-34) remains in the No. 10 spot in the West, in the final position to make the NBA’s new play-in tournament.

Luka Samanic scored a team-high 15 points for the Spurs, who only shot 40.2% from the floor.

The Jazz shot a blistering 55.7% of their field-goal attempts and hit 18-of-41 (43.9%) from three-point range en route to their second straight double-digit home win over San Antonio in three days.

Utah rolled despite not having injured All-Star guards Donovan Mitchell and Mike Conley.

Former University of Utah center Jakob Poeltl put the Spurs up 10-8, but that was the only time the visitors were on top all night.

Bogdanovic quickly regained the lead for the Jazz at 11-10 thanks to a three-point play, and then Clarkson, a Sixth Man of the Year contender, hit consecutive shots for a 15-10 lead.

Utah scored the final seven points of the first quarter, taking a 38-26 lead, and then registered the first 10 points of the second quarter for a commanding 48-26 edge only 14 minutes into the contest.

Joe Ingles, who finished with 14 points and 7 assists, opened the second period with eight consecutive points for Utah.

Utah stretched the gap to as many as 41 points at 112-71 after reserve Matt Thomas hit a pull-up jumper and a triple on consecutive possessions early in the fourth quarter. –