Jordan Clarkson rarely meets a shot that he doesn’t like. He’s made a great living for himself, especially with the Utah Jazz, as an unapologetic shot taker.
Heading into their game today against the Cleveland Cavaliers, Clarkson and the Jazz had gone 3-7 over their last ten games and had lost two in a row. It looked like they were going to lose their third-straight game after Donovan Mitchell started taking over for the Cavaliers in the second half on the way to a 46-point night.
However, with the Jazz staring at a 107-102 deficit with less than two minutes on the clock, Clarkson decided that his team would simply not lose the game.
First, Clarkson took a contested three with 1:23 left in the game that went in. Caris LeVert, who was guarding Clarkson on the play, also had a flagrant one called on him for not giving Clarkson enough space to land. Clarkson sank the free throw, and then used the additional possession from the flagrant to take another three-pointer 12 seconds later. which LeVert fouled him on again. A challenge was unsuccessful on that play, and Clarkson calmly sank all three of his free throws.
To add insult to injury, Clarkson then scored his final basket of the game with 40.2 seconds left on a running floater, capping off a personal 9-0 run that the Cavaliers never recovered from.
Clarkson finished the game as the Jazz’s leading scorer with 32 points, six rebounds and four assists while shooting 11 of 19 from the field and 5 of 11 from beyond the arc. They needed every single point from him thanks to Mitchell’s explosion.
Although the Jazz gave Mitchell a heartwarming welcome in his return to Salt Lake City, home fans will be happy that their former star did not walk away with a win. Today was the 14th time that Mitchell broke the 40-point mark in his career, and the fifth time he’s done it as a member of the Cavaliers.