SAN ANTONIO (ABC4 Sports) – With Donovan Mitchell sidelined with a back injury, the Utah Jazz used a balanced attack led by Jordan Clarkson and Rudy Gobert to beat San Antonio for its fourth straight win Monday night, 110-104.
Clarkson scored 23 points, Gobert had 16 points and 13 rebounds, and the Jazz improved to 24-9 on the season.
“I thought we did a great job tonight attacking, moving the ball and driving them,” Gobert said. “We were able to score in transition because of our defense.”
Mitchell injured his lower back in Saturday’s win over Dallas, and will miss at least one more game.
Clarkson provided Utah with a boost, finishing 9 for 21 from the field.
San Antonio went on an 8-0 run to close within 108-102 with 22 seconds left after Spurs coach Gregg Popovich emptied the bench, but Clarkson sealed the victory with a pair of free throws.
Clarkson, who is from San Antonio, did so minutes after confronting a fan sitting courtside in the final minutes of the fourth quarter.
The eighth-year guard was upset by a non-call on his shot attempt and did not run downcourt in time to prevent a 3-pointer from Doug McDermott with 4 minutes remaining. Utah called a timeout as San Antonio pulled within 94-80, at which point the fan stood up and yelled at Clarkson.
After initially ignoring the fan and walking toward the Jazz’s bench, Clarkson said the fan “crossed a line” with his comments but did not repeat what the fan said. Clarkson stopped, turned and began walking toward the fan until his teammates rushed to hold him back and security got between the two. Security escorted the fan out.
“The guy just keeps antagonizing me, like almost challenges me like, “What you gonna do?’ ” Clarkson said. “After saying a bunch of stuff. I make money, I ain’t trying to lose no money. I’m going to lose more money than he’s going to lose. He’s probably going to just get kicked out of the game. We’re playing basketball, having a good time. Fans got to learn, we’re human, we’re people, too. Stuff like that just can’t fly.”
The Jazz were enjoying themselves prior to that altercation.
Bojan Bogdanovic had 19 points and Joe Ingles added 17 for Utah, which has won 12 of 14.
Derrick White scored 21 points and Doug McDermott added 17 for San Antonio, who had its season-high, three-game winning streak snapped.
“Overall, it was a good game for improvement, understanding how we have to play, and what this is all about,” Popovich said. “I am actually pleased.”
The Spurs entered the game averaging 111.8 points, the league’s third-best scoring offense, but the Jazz shut that down after a fast start.
“They do an an excellent job pushing the ball and we didn’t allow them to get those 3s,” Jazz coach Quin Snyder said.
The absence of each team’s leading scorer didn’t hamper either offense initially. Both shot better than 60% in the opening quarter, shooting a combined 24 for 40.
Utah opened a 15-point lead while scoring 11 straight in the second quarter. Gobert’s presence impacted the Spurs’ short jumpers and layups. San Antonio went 7 for 26 in the second quarter, failing to make a field goal for 5 1/2 minutes.
Gobert finished with three blocks but altered numerous shots in the second and third quarters as Utah took command of the game.
The Jazz next play at Portland Wednesday night.