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Utah Jazz show better effort, still fall 116-108 to Los Angeles Lakers for second straight loss

SHARE Utah Jazz show better effort, still fall 116-108 to Los Angeles Lakers for second straight loss
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Los Angeles Lakers forward Anthony Davis (3) makes a three-point basket over Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert (27) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Monday, Aug. 3, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.

Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP

SALT LAKE CITY — For exactly 30 minutes on Monday night against the Los Angeles Lakers at Disney World, the Utah Jazz looked like a completely different team from the one that was altogether befuddled in a 16-point loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder last Saturday.

The new week brought a new Jazz squad, as they were aggressive in getting into the lane, moving the ball and they caught some fire from distance in the second quarter after an 0-for-9 start in the first.

But then suddenly at the midway point of the third quarter, the wheels came off. Up by four at 71-67, Utah surrendered a 14-0 run in less than five minutes, and the new double-digit deficit was too much to overcome in an eventual 116-108 loss.

The defeat moved the Jazz to 42-25 overall on the season and 1-2 during the NBA’s restart in Orlando.

As good as the Jazz were offensively for much of the night up until the run from the Western Conference-best Lakers, they struggled mightily on that end of the floor in the decisive stretch, as scoring zero points would indeed indicate. In their first five possessions after Los Angeles opened the run with a bucket from Anthony Davis, the Jazz committed three turnovers and missed two 3-pointers.

“The shots, I think we got good looks and we didn’t make them, and a lot of times when that happens, they’re running out the other way, and obviously the turnovers, we were playing in a crowd,” Utah head coach Quin Snyder said. “I think their length got to us a little bit. We’ve got to make quicker decisions and get off the ball.”

Stil, things were all knotted up at 71 inside of four minutes to play in the third, but the turnovers and missed shots continued for the Jazz, the former of which at least mostly had to do with Laker guards applying pressure on the perimeter. In the key minutes, Los Angeles was credited with four steals.

“They turned the pressure on,” Donovan Mitchell said. “I think the biggest thing for us, when they turn the pressure on, we’ve got to be able to execute even better. We turned the ball over way too many times. They did a great job taking us out of our actions kind of like what OKC did to us, and we’ve just got to find a way to continue to push through it.”

“They turned the pressure on. I think the biggest thing for us, when they turn the pressure on, we’ve got to be able to execute even better. We turned the ball over way too many times.” — Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell

On the night, the Jazz turned the ball over 21 times, which the Lakers turned into 26 points. Utah, on the other hand, turned 14 Los Angeles giveaways into just 12 points.

Elsewhere, while the Jazz had success from beyond the arc in the second quarter, they once again were bad overall in finishing just 12-for-43 despite, as Snyder said, getting good looks. Just about everyone was bad from distance, but Jordan Clarkson was especially so, going just 1-of-9 and 2-for-13 from the field, scoring just six points.

“I think when we put pressure on the rim and kicked it out, we got great looks,” Snyder said. “Obviously those are ones we’ve got to take. We had some possessions where the ball really moved and we got really wide open 3s and we weren’t able to knock them down.”

For the Lakers, Davis was tremendous after scoring just 14 points in a Saturday loss to the Toronto Raptors. On Monday, he did it all, finishing with 42 points, 12 rebounds, four assists, three steals and a block. LeBron James was relatively quiet in the scoring column for most of the night but finished with 22 points to go along with nine assists, eight rebounds, two steals and a block.

Mitchell was fantastic in the first half with 21 points but was limited in the second until late and finished with 33.

Up next for the Jazz is a game Wednesday afternoon against the Memphis Grizzlies.