Ron Turenne

The Roundup — Rubio heroics bury the Raps in Toronto

by Matt Payne

The game was in Donovan Mitchell's hands as he slowly dribbled the ball on the Raptors logo just inside midcourt, the Jazz down by one and the clock ticking down toward the end of regulation. 12 ... 11 ... 10 ... Mitchell drew two defenders as he sped toward the top of the key ... 9 ... 8 ... 7 ... and then he swung the ball over to a wide-open Ricky Rubio, who, with no hesitation, rose up and knocked down the go-ahead 3-pointer with 4.8 seconds left.

After one DeMar DeRozan miss and two Royce O'Neale free throws, the Jazz had locked down yet another impressive road win, this time a 97-93 victory over the Toronto Raptors.

The Jazz have now notched road victories over three of the Eastern Conference's top five teams—Boston, Washington and now Toronto.

"We never stopped fighting. We didn't quit," Mitchell said. "That effort showed, and in the final seconds we pulled through."

Mitchell once again led the Jazz (21-28) in scoring with 26 points, while Rubio contributed across the board with 14 points, six rebounds, six assists and two steals.

Rudy Gobert had another dominant game, finishing with 18 points, 15 rebounds, three assists, one steal and two blocks in the win.

Jonas Valanciunas scored a season-high 28 points for the Raptors (32-15), while DeRozan added 19 points. Kyle Lowry managed only five points in the loss.

Friday's Best

Mitchell came up huge again, scoring 20 of his 26 points in the second half to help the Jazz secure the come-from-behind victory. The rookie shot 9-for-20 from the field (including 4-for-7 from 3-point range) and added two rebounds and two assists (including the most important dime of the game). It was Mitchell's 22nd 20-point game of the season.

Key Stretches

The Jazz got off to a hot start, using a 16-4 run to take a 26-16 lead late in the first quarter. Rubio and Joe Ingles canned 3-pointers, Favors drove baseline and threw down an athletic dunk, and Gobert capped the run with a dunk of his own to give the Jazz a 10-point lead.

The Raptors owned the middle of the game, extending their lead to double digits in the third quarter before the Jazz clawed their way back with an 11-1 run. Gobert swatted away a shot on defense and then drove into the lane for a three-point play. Mitchell canned a jumper from the top of the key. Gobert blocked another shot. Ingles hit a 3-pointer. Mitchell threw down a one-handed slam in transition and then hit a free throw to tie the game.

After a back-and-forth final quarter, the Jazz closed the game on a 12-2 run to seal the victory. Favors threw down a dunk, Ingles canned another three, and Mitchell sank two free throws before he found Rubio open on the wing for the game-winner.

Significant Stats

4

The Jazz handed the Raptors only their fourth home loss of the season. Toronto (17-4) has the second-best home record of any team in the NBA, behind only San Antonio (20-3).

47.8

The Jazz shot 10-for-21 (47.8 percent) from 3-point range. Mitchell (4-for-7), Ingles (3-for-5) and Rubio (2-for-3, including the game-winner) each made multiple threes. Toronto shot only 7-for-27 (25.8 percent) from beyond the arc.

24

Utah held Toronto's All-Star backcourt of DeRozan (7-for-22) and Lowry (2-for-14) to only 24 points on 25.0 percent shooting. The duo entered the night averaging a combined 41.5 points per game.

Coach's Quote of the Night

"Ricky's mentally tough, and he wants those shots. He got one tonight and it was good to see him knock it down."

Jazz head coach Quin Snyder

Notable

Rodney Hood (leg contusion) missed his fourth straight game. Danté Exum (shoulder) remains out for the Jazz. ... The game featured seven ties and 14 lead changes. ... Favors finished with 10 points, nine rebounds, one assist, two steals and a block in 27 minutes. ... Former Jazz wing C.J. Miles led Toronto's reserves with 10 points on 4-for-8 shooting.

Up Next

The Jazz will return home to face the defending champion Golden State Warriors on Tuesday night. Tipoff is set for 7:00pm MT.