Joe "Iso Joe" Johnson did it again for the Jazz off the bench.
During a quarter-time break of Game 4 of the Jazz's first-round playoff series against the Los Angeles Clippers, the arena provided some light-hearted entertainment by organising an inflatable ball race featuring supporters from each team.
Jamal Crawford had his best game of the series in Game Four. It was Utah's first home playoff win since 2010. Last night was kind of a carbon copy of what happened to us in Game 1, only Rudy (Gobert) went out first play. Johnson did a bit of everything, from hitting floaters in the lane to dropping 3-pointers, to keep the Clippers' defense on its heels.
Still, Doc Rivers said he doesn't know "what to expect" from Austin because of the length of time the reserve guard has been out.
The Jazz played the second half without their lone All-Star, as Gordon Hayward was sent home at halftime with flu-like symptoms from food poisoning. We know we got a job to do. A guy we play off of and stuff and just his leadership. Johnson fueled the surge with baskets on five consecutive possessions - ending in a go-ahead floater - and Hood punctuated the spurt with back-to-back baskets. But Chris Paul, a longtime Jazz nemesis, proved his superstardom with a miraculous performance, and willed the Clippers to victory. "It's been getting better everyday. We just got to make it tougher".
Nearly as encouraging as Gobert's play was Derrick Favors, who bounced back from a poor Game 3 to score 17 points.
On Saturday, the Clippers announced that Griffin will miss the rest of the postseason because of a toe injury he suffered during the crucial first-round Game 3 win over the Utah Jazz.
Are the Jazz necessarily counting on Gobert's return? Up until Griffin got hurt, Los Angeles had outscored Utah by a total of 237-235 through 116 minutes and 42 seconds.
"I was doing everything I could", Gobert said. "I was feeling good. So, I've got one more day to recover and I'll be fine on Tuesday". The knee is still fine. "I think the series gets harder and harder each game". Can Griffin ever stay healthy for a full regular season and playoffs? If the Jazz go on to win this series, they will go down as series-changing triples. The Jazz committed 12 turnovers, which the Clippers turned into four points. The series between the Clippers and Jazz is tied at 2-2. Utah finally took a 53-49 lead on back-to-back layups from Gobert. The Los Angeles Clippers are shooting 33.7 percent from beyond the arc and 72.4 percent from the free throw line. Johnson scored or assisted on 22 of the last 25 Jazz points. Paul, Griffin and DeAndre Jordan have formed an imposing trio in the regular season, but look around the West, and the Warriors, Spurs and Rockets are clearly ahead of the Clippers, who don't appear to be built for long playoff runs.
"Obviously, we need Blake, we want Blake", Doc Rivers said.
Paul and his 2005 ACC compatriots Raymond Felton and Redick put together some really solid numbers.
"It's unbelievable, isn't it?" said Joe Ingles, who had a career-high 11 assists. His previous high was eight against Minnesota on April 7.
How far can the Los Angeles Clippers go without Blake Griffin?
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