Utah Jazz stake title claims with dominant win over Los Angeles Lakers

The Jazz shot 45 per cent from three in the 25-point victory.

Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell (45) drives against Los Angeles Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma.
Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell (45) drives against Los Angeles Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma.
Image: Rick Bowmer

THE UTAH JAZZ continued to prove they are a force to be reckoned with this season, cruising past the reigning-champion Los Angeles Lakers 114-89.

The Lakers were still without Anthony Davis but had few other excuses, with the Jazz heating up from deep in the first quarter and refusing to let their foot off the pedal until the final buzzer.

Utah finished with 22 threes on 45 per cent shooting from beyond the arc, compared to just eight for the Lakers.

The Jazz had six players in double digits, while LeBron James led all scorers with 19.

Luguentz Dort was the hero for Oklahoma City as he drained a three at the buzzer to propel the Thunder past the San Antonio Spurs 102-99.

After getting off to a quick start, the Thunder almost harmed their chances in the second, being held to just 12 points.

However they bounced back strongly with 36 in the third before Dort’s buzzer-beater clinched their 13th win of the season.

Devin Booker’s 33-point effort was not enough for the Phoenix Suns, who suffered just their second loss in 11 games with a 124-121 defeat against the Charlotte Hornets.

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The Hornets shook off some early struggles to hang on for the three-point win on the back of 29 points from Malik Monk.

The Golden State Warriors left it late against Indiana, with a run of six-straight points late in the fourth enough to hold off the Pacers 111-107.

On an inefficient night for Steph Curry, Draymond Green stepped up with several clutch plays down the stretch as he finished one rebound short of a triple-double.

The Boston Celtics’ recent horror run continued with a 15-point loss to the Atlanta Hawks.

Danilo Gallinari fired 10 threes for Atlanta in the 127-112 win as Boston officially registered a month without consecutive victories.

In the rest of the day’s action: the Cleveland Cavaliers breezed past the Houston Rockets 112-96, the Miami Heat made it four in a row with a 116-108 win over the Toronto Raptors, the Chicago Bulls secured a 133-126 overtime victory against the Minnesota Timberwolves, and Zion Williamson led the New Orleans Pelicans over the Detroit Pistons 128-118.

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