SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 Sports) – Golden State worried so much about defending Donovan Mitchell that Bojan Bogdanovic repeatedly found himself wide open on the perimeter.
That turned out to be just what the Utah forward needed to overcome a recent shooting slump.
Bogdanovic made a go-ahead basket in the final two minutes, hit eight three pointers and scored 32 points to help the Jazz beat the Golden State Warriors 114-106 on Friday night.
Mitchell added 28 to help Utah win for the third time in four games.
While going 8 for 13 from 3-point range, Bogdanovic encountered token resistance much of the time.
“They were more scared of Donovan than my 3s,” he said. “That was their game plan.”
Getting in the win column proved tougher than expected. Utah did not take the lead for good until Bogdanovic and Mitchell hit back-to-back 3-pointers with 1:18 remaining that gave the Jazz a 109-104 lead.
Bogdanovic shot 61.5% from 3-point range and went 8 of 18 overall after shooting under 40% from the field in five of his last six games. That slump is a memory now.
“He’s a big part of our offense,” Mitchell said. “He’s confident shooting the ball. I told him, ‘You can go 1 for 26. No one cares. Just shoot. Shoot. Shoot. Shoot.’ And that’s what he did.”
Rudy Gobert added 15 points and 15 rebounds for the Jazz. Joe Ingleschipped in 13 points and eight assists, and Royce O’Neale added 14 points.
Alec Burks scored 24 points and Damion Lee added 21 for the Warriors. D’Angelo Russell added 18 points.
Golden State lost despite outscoring Utah 52-12 in bench points. Still, the Warriors showed enough promise to make head coach Steve Kerr believe they are turning a corner.
“So, I like where we’re heading. I really do,” Kerr said. “I know that may sound crazy, because of our record, but I think we’re going to start winning some games. I think we’re getting better.”
Golden State got a big lift from its bench starting in the waning minutes of the first quarter. The Warriors held Utah without a basket over the final four minutes of the quarter. That opened the door for a 9-0 run, capped by a step-back jumper from Russell just a few seconds into the second quarter that gave Golden State a 31-22 lead.
Golden State totaled eight offensive rebounds in the first quarter while holding Utah to seven total rebounds.
“The offensive rebounds really hurt us in the first half,” Jazz coach Quin Snyder said. “Those were additional possessions. Golden State makes you expend a lot of energy in the half court guarding them and then they go to the boards.”
The Warriors led by as many as 13 points during the second quarter. O’Neale buried a 3-pointer and threw down a dunk to help the Jazz trim the deficit to 41-37. Golden State countered with a 9-0 run, scoring baskets on four straight possessions. Burks punctuated the run with a jumper that gave the Warriors a 50-37 lead.
Utah came alive in the third quarter behind the perimeter shooting of Bogdanovic. He buried back-to-back 3-pointers to fuel a 14-4 run that gave the Jazz a 76-68 lead.
“Our energy was completely different in the third quarter,” Bogdanovic said.
Golden State went ahead once again early in the fourth quarter when Russell started a 7-0 run with a 3-pointer that put the Warriors up 91-88.