Mitchell and Jazz overtake Wolves 136-104 for 5th consecutive win


The all-star goalie scores 36 points to lead Utah to Minnesota.

Utah Jazz goalie Donovan Mitchell (45) was fouled by Minnesota Timberwolves forward Jarred Vanderbilt (8) in the first half of an NBA basketball game on Wednesday, December 8, 2021 in Minneapolis. Utah won 136-104. (AP Photo / Stacy Bengs)

Minneapolis • Donovan Mitchell scored 36 points and the Utah Jazz beat the Minnesota Timberwolves 136-104 Wednesday night for their fifth straight victory.

Mitchell had 14 of 23 shots and Utah had 25 3-pointers, two short of their season high set last Friday against Boston.

Bojan Bogdanovic had 21 points and five rebounds, and Jordan Clarkson scored 18 points – all deep – off the bench for Utah. The Jazz travel to Philadelphia for the second straight game on Thursday.

“It was a good win for us,” said Mitchell. “It’s a road trip, I think we’re all trying to see where we’re at and keep building. We have a big one tomorrow.

Karl-Anthony Towns led Minnesota with 22 points, while Anthony Edwards scored 18. The Timberwolves have dropped four straight points.

Utah and Minnesota came in first and second Wednesday, respectively, in three runs attempted per game. Both teams let it fly to Target Center.

The Jazz, who average 42.3 shots per game from the depths, finished 25 of 54 of 3 in the win. This set a new season high in 3-point attempts for Utah.

“I think more than what they had in the game at any given time, our guys are getting used to playing with each other,” Jazz coach Quin Snyder said.

Minnesota is averaging 42.1 3-point tries and scored 17 of 47 Wednesday.

This is the fourth time this season that Minnesota’s defense has allowed an opponent to hit 20 or more 3-pointers. Utah has hit 20 or more 3s in four games.

“We let the guys shoot the ball in our face,” said Timberwolves coach Chris Finch. “We didn’t compete with the ball.”

Mitchell scored 17 points in the first quarter but was silent in the second, scoring just two more points before halftime. The Jazz guard added 12 points in the third to help Utah extend their lead to 14. Mitchell’s 36 points were one of their season highs.

It was Mitchell’s fourth straight game with 30 or more points.

“He’s full of confidence,” Bogdanovic said of Mitchell. “We know how good he is. This is who he is. He has performed at a high level throughout the year.

Rudy Gobert had foul issues when he made his fourth foul just 1:22 of the third quarter. He only played 4:30 into the quarter, but Utah still managed to push his lead to 14.

Bogdanovic took over defensively against Towns with Gobert on the bench. He also hit a pair of 3 runs in the third quarter.

“Bojan just did a great job working hard and making it hard,” Snyder said.

Patrick Beverley returned for Minnesota after missing six games with strain in his left groin. Wolves were 2-4 without Beverley, the spark plug for the defending team.

It was Beverley’s offense that gave Wolves a boost at the start. He scored 14 points in the first half and finished with 16.

Beverley also committed a technical foul in the second quarter.

Minnesota struggled at close range. The Wolves were 18 of 41 in the paint – a worse percentage (43.9%) than Utah shot from the depths (46.3%).

“We don’t end up like the big boys end up around the rim,” Finch said. “We are going there to finish smoothly. We have to be better to finish.

HONORED DREAM

Minnesota Lynx head coach Cheryl Reeve was honored on the field after the first quarter. Reeve was named the new coach of the United States Women’s National Team earlier Wednesday and received a standing ovation from the crowd at Target Center.

ADVICE

Jazz: C Hassan Whiteside missed his second straight game with a left buttock contusion.

Wolves of the woods: Minnesota was without point guard D’Angelo Russell (right ankle pain) for the second straight game. … Josh Okogie was 2 of 2 in a 3-point range. He entered Wednesday’s game with just three shots from deep all season.

FOLLOWING

Jazz: Utah continues their four-game trip Thursday night in Philadelphia.

Wolves of the woods: Minnesota wraps up its three-game homestand on Friday night when it hosts Cleveland.


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