SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 Sports) – In the first Sunday night regular season game in Salt Lake City since 2001, the Utah Jazz and Phoenix Suns played an absolute thriller.
Kevin Durant totaled 39 points, 10 assists and eight rebounds to lead the Phoenix Suns to a 140-137 double overtime win over the Utah Jazz on Sunday night.
Devin Booker scored 22 of his 26 points after halftime and tallied eight assists for the Suns. Eric Gordon added 20 points and six assists. Jusuf Nurkic chipped in 18 points and 12 rebounds. Grayson Allen finished with 14 points, including the game-winning basket.
“I’m proud of the team and the way they fought,” said head coach Will Hardy. “I really wanted this win for the team. I think they’ve put in a lot of work and have stuck together, and I really thought they deserved to win.”
Phoenix won its third straight game overall and beat the Jazz for the second time in three days.
Lauri Markkanen finished with 38 points and 17 rebounds to lead Utah. Talen Horton-Tucker chipped in 25 points, Jordan Clarkson added 22, Collin Sexton had 18 and John Collins had 15.
Utah lost despite finishing with a 27-18 advantage in second-chance points and 26-12 edge in fastbreak points.
Durant scored back-to-back baskets and knocked down three free throws to push the Suns out to a 135-130 lead in the second overtime.
The Jazz tied it again on a corner 3 from Collins with 58.9 seconds left. Allen countered on the other end with a go-ahead 3-pointer with 43 seconds remaining to keep Utah from taking its first lead after the end of regulation.
Durant was initially whistled for a foul on Markkanen with less than a second left that would have sent him to the free-throw line for three free throws. Officials overturned the call upon review.
“I think our team competed unbelievably hard throughout the game,” said Hardy. “I thought our defense was way better than it was last game against them. But things happen in a game especially when you’re at that level of fatigue.”
Utah twice rallied from an 11-point first-half deficit and trailed for the bulk of four quarters before Markkanen tied it on a putback layup with 20.3 seconds to go in regulation to force overtime.
Gordon scored three baskets to give Phoenix a 123-118 lead less than two minutes into the first overtime. The Suns never trailed during that five-minute stretch and seemingly clinched a victory on Durant’s 3-pointer with 35.6 seconds remaining in the first overtime.
But Markkanen hit two free throws in the final seconds to cut the deficit to one. Then, after Gordon went 1-of-2 from the line, Sexton forced a second overtime with another putback layup just ahead of the buzzer.
The Jazz next visit the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday for a NBA In-Season Tournament game.