Jordan Clarkson scored 39 points and Lauri Markkanen added 31, including a pair of clutch free throws, to lift the Utah Jazz to a gutsy 132-129 overtime home win over the New Orleans Pelicans on Thursday, December 15 (Friday, December 16, Manila time).
Malik Beasley contributed 17 points and Kelly Olynyk totaled 14 points and 7 rebounds as Utah earned a second home win in three nights against the Pelicans.
Zion Williamson amassed 31 points, 8 rebounds, and 8 assists, and CJ McCollum fired in 28 points for the Pelicans, who came into this two-game set on a seven-game winning streak. The Jazz clinched the season series 3-0 with the consecutive victories.
Utah held a five-point lead with 34.1 seconds left in overtime after a putback bucket and a free throw a minute apart from Walker Kessler. The rookie had 11 points, 8 rebounds, and 3 blocks.
Williamson cut the deficit to 3 with a power drive and the Pelicans caught a break when Mike Conley missed 2 free throws. The veteran Jazz guard and Clarkson then hounded McCollum, forcing him into a rushed three-point miss.
Markkanen grabbed the rebound and clinched the win with 2 free throws in the final seconds.
The game was sent into overtime after a goaltending call on Larry Nance Jr. was overturned after a long referee review. Nance soared to block a short shot by Markkanen, who caught the inbound pass from Olynyk and in one motion fired up the potential game-winner with less than two seconds remaining.
Utah held a three-point lead after Conley hit a pair of free throws with 12.1 seconds remaining, but the Pelicans hauled in an offensive rebound after McCollum missed a three. Trey Murphy, who had 12 points, then tied the game with a three-pointer from the corner with 2.2 seconds remaining in regulation.
Utah trailed by 13 in the third quarter and used a late 12-1 run in the final period to turn an eight-point deficit into a 105-102 lead, setting up the tight finish to regulation.
Clarkson scored 17 points in the first quarter to help Utah take a 27-25 lead. New Orleans used a couple of 7-0 surges to go up by 9 before settling on a 62-58 halftime lead.
McCollum and Williamson teamed up for an 8-0 run early in the second half and the Pelicans continued to build on the lead, making it 76-63 after Herbert Jones’ layup. – Rappler.com