Bogdanovic scores 36 as the Jazz beat Denver for 10th straight road win, 115-109

Sports

DENVER (ABC4 Sports) – Playing without Rudy Gobert, Joe Ingles and Hassan Whiteside, the Utah Jazz still had enough to beat the Denver Nuggets Wednesday night for its 10th straight road win, 115-109.

Bojan Bodganovic scored a season-high 36 points, while Rudy Gay added 18 points off the bench as the Jazz moved to within 1.5 games of the top-seed in the Western Conference with its 16th victory in its last 19 games. Utah is now 14-3 on the road this season, tied for the best road record in the NBA this season.

Bogdanovic made 12 of 20 shots from the field, to go along with 13 rebounds and four assists.

“It was a big win for us,” Bogdanovic said. “We controlled the boards. We controlled the turnovers. We were taking care of the ball and a lot of the 50-50 balls on the floor, they were all ours, so I think that was big.”

Donovan Mitchell, who was named the Western Conference Player of the Month for December, added 17 points, while Royce O’Neale had 13 points, 11 rebounds and five assists.

Reigning NBA MVP Nikola Jokic had a triple-double with 26 points, 21 rebounds and 11 assists for the Nuggets.

Udoka Azubuike, who has been out since November with an ankle injury, made his first career start at center and scored five points, while being tasked with guarding Jokic.

“He was really focused and ready. He gave us great minutes,” Bogdanovic said of Azubuike. “And Rudy has been big for us all season. Both of them did a great job.”

“There were just a lot of good things, beginning with Dok,” said head coach Quin Snyder. “To come in and in his first NBA start to play against arguably the best player in the world right now, I thought the minutes that he gave us were just really important.” 

Up by one at halftime, the Jazz led by 13 in the third quarter and took an 88-78 lead into the fourth. But Denver made a run, cutting the deficit to three on a fast-break bucket by Monte Morris.

But O’Neale, Jordan Clarkson and Gay all made three-pointers as the Jazz stretched the lead back out to 10. Clarkson finished the game with 13 points.

The Jazz shot 46.7 percent from the field and committed just seven turnovers in the game.

“We did a great job.” Bogdanovic said. “I think that is probably the fewest turnovers that we’ve had the whole season, we had less than less than 10.”

Mike Conley added 10 points and six assists for the Jazz.

Ingles entered the NBA health and safety protocols on Tuesday, and will miss at least the next two games. Gobert had a 102-degree fever and was out with a non-Covid illness, while Whiteside is still recovering from a concussion.

Utah (28-10) next plays at Toronto Friday night.

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