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Emptying the Noggin – Shorthanded Jazz find long ball range in win over Pels

By David Locke, Utah Jazz

SUMMARY: The Utah Jazz regained their shooting stroke and swept the season series with the New Orleans Pelicans with a 108-100 win, despite being without Gordon Hayward and Derrick Favors.

• The Jazz were desperate for a solid performance from Rodney Hood without Gordon Hayward available, and Hoodie delivered. He had seven points in the first quarter and finished with 20 in 30 minutes, nailing four 3-pointers.

• Utah’s 3-point shooting got rolling again. They hit 15 of 27 from 3, led by Joe Ingles’ perfect 5 for 5 from deep. George Hill hit 3 of 6 from beyond the arc, and Joe Johnson went 2 for 3.

• Quin Snyder went to Joe Johnson at the 4 and it changed the game; The Jazz were +26 tonight when Joe Johnson was on the floor. In the 12:58 that Boris Diaw played power forward tonight, the Jazz were -17. Quin quickly pulled the plug on Boris in both the first and the third quarters, and it changed the game.

• Raul Neto had a terrific game as the backup point guard, bringing great energy to the floor and igniting the Jazz’s effort for what seemed like every loose ball. Neto played 18 minutes and had five points, but his energy was the story.

• Dante Exum played the backup shooting guard with Alec Burks being away from the team (personal reasons). Exum’s outside shooting is not a natural fit for the shooting guard position, but it may be his lack of shooting that adds value to that position. 

• The Jazz led by seven points after the first quarter and stretched the lead to 18 in the second, but the Pelicans started working their way back in the game and cut it to a five-point advantage by halftime. The Pelicans took the lead in the third quarter, then Joe Johnson came back in the game and the Jazz dominated the game for the rest of the night.

• DeMarcus Cousins didn’t play and Anthony Davis was fantastic. He had 36 points and 17 rebounds. He is an incredible talent. He plays so much better when Cousins is not on the floor.

• Joe Johnson led the Jazz with six assists and the Jazz had 27 as a team.

• Rudy Gobert continued his remarkable play with 20 points and 19 rebounds. 

• This was a solid win. The Jazz need all three this week. Sacramento has won two big games on back-to-back and are playing super free.