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The Roundup—Jazz 95, Heat 100
By Matt Payne, utahjazz.com
Another Jazz comeback attempt fell short in the fourth quarter, but wow was this a fun one.
It’s easy for fans to dislike Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh, and that’s exactly what they did as the Heat pulled out a 100-95 win over the Jazz Friday night at EnergySolutions Arena.
Wade and Bosh finished with 29 and 22 points, respectively, and the duo traded punches with ... well, pretty much everyone on Utah’s team throughout the second half. Here are a few of Utah’s notable plays as they erased a 16-point Miami lead in the second half.
- Gordon Hayward hit a step-back jumper in the lane, then took a no-look pass from (wait for it ...) Rudy Gobert (!!!) and swished a three to make the score 78-71 with 1:47 left in the third quarter.
- Exum drilled a pull-up three in transition just before the third-quarter buzzer sounded.
- Alec Burks went coast to coast and converted an acrobatic three-point play to cut Miami’s lead to two at 80-78 early in the fourth quarter.
- Exum denied Wade three times on an isolation, slapping the ball away once and denying Wade’s jumper twice.
- Gobert stuffed Wade in the lane (for the third time), leading to a transition jumper by Enes Kanter.
- Kanter drilled a three off a kick-out pass from Gobert.
- Hayward converted a driving layup to cut Miami’s lead to 95-93 with 10 seconds left.
Each of these plays drew a thunderous reaction by a loud and raucous crowd that was in it until the end. The Jazz, though, couldn’t convert in the closing seconds and fell to 6-17 on the season.
Kanter led the Jazz with 25 points, and almost single-handedly kept Utah in the game early as he scored 16 points in the first half. No other Jazz player had more than five points before halftime.
Hayward added 18 points, while Burks scored 16. Gobert (more on him below) played marvelously in place of Derrick Favors, who suffered an ankle sprain with 2:06 left in the first quarter and did not return.
The Jazz held the Heat to 38 second-half points, but by that time Miami’s damage had already been done. The Heat hit their first six shots and shot a blistering 22-for-35 (62.9 percent) from the field en route to 62 first-half points.
Coach’s Quote of the Night
“We didn’t execute with force the last couple of minutes. That’s the time of the game where [your opponent] is not going to let you go where you want to go. The game gets more physical, and you’ve got to raise your level.”
—Jazz head coach Quin Snyder
Rudy Gobert barely missed his first career double-double (finishing with nine points and 11 rebounds), but that didn’t stop him from having a career night. The 7-foot-1 center finished with career highs in assists (four) and blocks (five) in 26 critical minutes in place of Favors. As usual, Gobert’s influence wasn’t limited to the box score—he made every Miami player think twice before driving into the lane.
It Was Over When ...
The Jazz couldn’t even get a shot off after Wade missed a free throw to keep the score at 98-95 with 5.2 seconds left. After a timeout, Joe Ingles wasn’t able to inbound the ball before the five-second count was up … and that was it. Instead of having a shot to tie the game with a last-second three, the Jazz turned the ball over and lost the game.
Burks and Hayward each drained two 3-pointers, but Utah’s overall efficiency from deep remained low. As a team, the Jazz went 8-for-28 (28.6 percent) from 3-point range.
Block of the Night
Wade curled off a screen on a baseline inbounds play midway through the third quarter then rose for a jumper, only to see Gobert spike it out of bounds. This was a common occurrence for Miami as Gobert finished with five of Utah’s six blocks. The other was by Favors before he hurt his ankle.
The Jazz will hit the road for a game Sunday afternoon against the Washington Wizards. Tipoff is set for 4 p.m. MT and the game will be televised on ROOT SPORTS.