One of the leading candidates to win the Rookie of the Year honors this NBA season, Donovan Mitchell guided his team to tie their first series (1-1) against the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Donovan led all scorers with 28 points where almost half of his scoring damage came in the last quarter.
Third overall pick of the 2010 NBA draft, Derrick Favors had a career playoff best with 20 points and 16 rebounds while the Spaniard sensation Ricky Rubio chipped in 22 points, seven rebounds and nine assists but most importantly his first taste of winning a post-season game.
Reigning Most Valuable Player, Russell Westbrook teased another triple-double with his 19 points, 13 assists and nine rebounds for the OKC Thunder. Paul George who went explosive in their series opener with 36 points only limited to 18 markers in Game 2 with an awful 6-of-21 shooting from the field. Apart from George, Carmelo Anthony also struggled finding the bottom of the rim as he only converted six shots out of his 18 attempts. Anthony added 17 points for the home-team.
Rebounding was the key area of the game where the Utah Jazz dominated, 56-46. Game three will move to Jazz floor this coming Saturday.
Carmelo Anthony had a couple of chances to close the gap where the Jazz leading 99-95 in the last minute of the fourth quarter but his back-to-back three-pointers all rimmed out.
While Donovan Mitchell still finding his ways to do his usual scoring ways in the first half, it was Derrick Favors and Ricky Rubio carried the Jazz to keep the score close against the home-team. On the other hand, it was Paul George who keep the scoring barrage for the OKC Thunder with 11 points going to halftime.
Thunder’s big-man Steven Adams committed his fourth foul at the mid-way of the third quarter while OKC still down 65-58, then they made a running surge. Paul George unleashed another three-pointer and his team took over the driving seat, 69-67. Oklahoma made a 21-9 run to end the quarter and looking good as they head to the final quarter.
However, the story of the game got reversed and went in favor of the Jazz as Donovan Mitchell went unstoppable. Mitchell dropped 13 points in the final quarter and Thunder found no answer to the rookie’s amazing plays.