SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 Sports) – Once again, Rudy Gobert was there to clean up the mess.
On the final few possessions, the two-time Defensive Player of the Year made a tip-in, blocked a layup just before it hit the glass, got a key rebound and made a free throw.
In all, Gobert had 22 points, 17 rebounds and five blocks to propel the surging Utah Jazz to a 112-107 come-from-behind victory over the Dallas Mavericks on Saturday.
“Obviously, we weren’t perfect but Rudy cleans up a lot of our mistakes,” teammate Donovan Mitchell said. “He’s always there for us.”
Mitchell scored 25 points and Bojan Bogdanovic added 23 for the Jazz, who have won 14 of their last 15 games.
Luka Doncic scored 25 points for the Mavericks, who have dropped two of three after winning four straight. Seth Curry added 19 points for Dallas. Doncic managed only two points in the final quarter.
“Any team is going to do anything possible to make it hard on (Luka) down the stretch. I’ll look at it. I’ve got to do a better job of getting him in better situations,” Dallas coach Rick Carlisle said.
Gobert’s three-point play — a dunk and a free throw — gave the Jazz their first lead since the first half at 96-95. The Mavericks responded with a 3 by Curry and two free throws from for Utes star Delon Wright.
Gobert broke a 104-all tie with a tip-in, and after Tim Hardaway Jr. and Royce O’Neale exchanged 3-pointers, Gobert blocked what looked like an easy layup for Wright.
“It was impressive,” Mitchell said. “I’m convinced he let guys lay it up at the beginning of the game so he could block it late.”
Mitchell made a pair of free throws, and then Gobert rebounded Doncic’s missed 3-pointer and was fouled. He made one of two free throws for the final margin. With a performance like that, the crowd had good reason for chanting Gobert’s name.
“It was amazing . the energy was almost like a playoff atmosphere,” Gobert said. “But just winning is my number one thing.”
The Mavericks raced to a 32-19 lead behind Doncic’s playmaking and shooting. The Jazz later scored 12 consecutive points and took a brief 37-36 lead on Georges Niang’s 3-pointer.
Kristaps Porzingis scored 15 points and Hardaway and Wright each chipped in 11 for Dallas.
“I think we did a good job today, especially here where it’s tough to play. We had a lot of open shots down the stretch. We just didn’t hit them,” Doncic said.
The Jazz next host the Houston Rockets Monday night.