Utah Jazz Rout Thunder 113-96
SALT LAKE CITY - Donovan Mitchell scored 33 points and collected seven rebounds to lead the Utah Jazz to a 113-96 win over the Oklahoma City Thunder on Monday night.
Joe Ingles scored 20 points while Rudy Gobert added 16 points and 10 rebounds. Ricky Rubio chipped in 13 points, eight assists and six boards. Utah takes a 3-1 series lead back to Oklahoma City. Game 5 is on Wednesday night.
Paul George scored 32 points and Russell Westbrook added 23 points and 14 rebounds to lead the Thunder. Oklahoma City lost its third straight in the series after shooting just 39 percent from the field.
"I thought we played downhill a lot more," Thunder coach Billy Donovan said. "I thought we were at the rim a lot more. From there, we probably missed some opportunities to move the ball. I thought our ball movement was sporadic and sometimes it was very good."
The Thunder opened up a 26-19 lead late in the first quarter when Carmelo Anthony capped a string of three straight Oklahoma City baskets with an alley-oop layup. They held onto the lead for much of the second quarter until Utah finally woke up on offense.
Starting with Rudy Gobert cutting to the rim for a dunk with 3:45 left in the second quarter, the Jazz scored on 11 straight offensive possessions to blow the game wide open. Ingles fueled the surge by hitting three straight 3-pointers to put Utah in front 58-52 before halftime.
It finally culminated in another Gobert dunk that punctuated a 20-3 run extending over the second and third quarters that gave Utah a 67-52 lead.
"The whole year, one of the things that we've wanted to do collectively is try to generate open shots," Jazz coach Quin Snyder said. "You're not always going to make them, but you want to keep taking them. Eventually, you're going to make some. We hit some timely ones in the second half."
The Jazz led by as many as 21 points in the third quarter. Utah went up 87-68 when Mitchell drained a jumper and then fed Ingles for a 3-pointer on the ensuing possession.
Physical play and heated emotions characterized the game. Both teams picked up two technical fouls before halftime. Then Jae Crowder was ejected with a technical foul with 5:30 remaining in the fourth quarter.