SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 Sports) – The Jazz beat Indiana Thursday afternoon but may have paid a big price.
Jazz all-star guard Donovan Mitchell sprained his ankle in the third quarter of Utah’s 119-111 win over Indiana. He could not put any weight on his leg and had to be helped off the floor by teammates. X-rays were negative, and he will be getting an MRI tonight.
“Donovan in particular is so important to our team and he’s what make us go,” said Jazz guard Mike Conley. “We knew seeing him limp off wasn’t good and that he probably wasn’t coming back this game or might be out for a little bit.”
“I saw him in the locker room and he was in good spirits, so hopefully we can get him back soon, said Jazz center Rudy Gobert.
“He’s the ultimate teammate, he was just rooting for us and making jokes , he’s the same old Don,” said Conley. “I think he’ll be fine just another obstacle in the way, he’ll take that challenge and be back before we know it.”
Mitchell scored 22 points before leaving the game with a sprained ankle. Bojan Bogdanovic led Utah with 24 points, Rudy Gobert posted 13 points, 23 rebounds, and four blocks. His fifth game this season with at least 20 rebounds.
Jordan Clarkson returned for the Jazz after missing the last four games. He was a spark off the bench for the Jazz, scoring 18 points.
Domantis Sabonis had 22 points, 15 rebounds and 6 assists for the Pacers in the loss.
Indiana led by as many as 17 points in the first half but the Jazz outscored the Pacers 61-42 in the second half to secure the 119-111 win.
In Mitchell’s absence, the Jazz erased a double-digit deficit and tied the game at 89 heading into the fourth quarter on back-to-back baskets from Clarkson.
Utah overtook Indiana for good with a 10-0 run in the fourth quarter, highlighted by back-to-back baskets from Bogdanovic, to take a 108-99 lead. Utah held Indiana scoreless on eight straight possessions over 4 1/2 minutes.
“Everything was better in the second half and it did change momentum in the game,” center Rudy Gobert said. “It fueled our offense.”
The Jazz will be back in action Saturday, April 17th in Los Angeles as they take on the Lakers.