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The Roundup—Jazz 106, Suns 101

by Matt Payne

And ... they did it again.

In nearly identical fashion to Saturday's come-from-behind win over Orlando, the Utah Jazz turned it on in the final minutes to escape Phoenix with a 106-101 victory over the Suns on Monday night.

The Jazz (27-16) have won four straight games and sit in fifth place in the Western Conference standings.

Rudy Gobert led the Jazz in points (18), rebounds (17) and blocks (four), while Gordon Hayward and George Hill chipped in 17 points each. Joe Johnson (15 points), Boris Diaw (12 points), Derrick Favors (11 points) and Joe Ingles (11 points) also scored in double figures.

Eric Bledsoe nearly notched a triple-double with 31 points, nine rebounds and nine assists for the Suns (13-28), while Devin Booker added 25 points in the loss.

Monday's Best

With Rodney Hood (knee) out of the lineup, Johnson stepped up and gave the Jazz a desperately needed boost down the stretch. He scored all 15 of his points in the second half and was especially hot in the fourth quarter, when he shot 3-for-4 from the field (including 2-for-2 from 3-point range) and 2-for-2 from the line. Johnson canned a jumper early in the fourth quarter to give the Jazz their first lead since midway through the first period, and then he hit nothing but net on a contested corner three that beat the shot clock and gave the Jazz a two-point lead with under a minute to go in the game.

Key Stretch

Just like a handful of other games this season, this one went down to the wire. With the game tied and just over a minute left, Phoenix's T.J. Warren went straight through Hayward for a "steal" and breakaway dunk. That, however, would be Phoenix's final bucket. Johnson answered with his huge corner three to give the Jazz the lead, then Hayward pump-faked from the perimeter, drew a foul on rookie Marquese Chriss, and sank two free throws to push the lead to three with 13.6 seconds left. Gobert sealed the win with a point-blank stuff of a layup attempt by Chriss (not the rookie's most glorious sequence, obviously) before Johnson concluded the scoring with two free throws.

Significant Stats

+16

The Jazz grabbed 14 offensive rebounds, which led to 22 second-chance points (compared to only six for Phoenix). Six of Gobert's 17 rebounds came on the offensive glass.

53.7

After a rough start (39.6 percent shooting in the first half), Utah caught fire and shot 22-for-41 (53.7 percent) after halftime. The Jazz went 7-for-15 from 3-point range in the second half after shooting 1-for-8 up to that point.

Coach's Quote of the Night

"I thought in the fourth quarter we came together a little bit. Phoenix is playing really well right now. Earl [Watson's] doing a terrific job with their team. They're young and they play as hard as any team in the league. ... They're a difficult team to play because they're so committed to running and they play with such intensity."

Jazz head coach Quin Snyder

Notable

Earlier in the day, Hayward was named Western Conference Player of the Week. ... Gobert grabbed 10+ rebounds for the 28th straight game. ... The Suns were coming off a win against the Spurs. ... Hood missed the game after hyperextending his knee on Saturday. ... Tyson Chandler (illness) missed the game for Phoenix. ... Diaw led the Jazz with six assists.

Up Next

The Jazz will travel to Dallas for a game against the Mavericks on Friday. Tipoff is set for 6:30 p.m. MT, and the game will be televised on ROOT SPORTS.

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