Reserve point guard Jordan Clarkson scored 40 points and led the Utah Jazz ‘s sweeping attack, which beat the Philadelphia Sixers 134-123, adding the eighth consecutive victory, the best current streak in the NBA.
Clarkson, who had eight 3-pointers, again racked up all the votes to be voted Sixth Player of the Year when the regular season concludes.
His scoring inspiration was what made it possible for the Jazz to go from losing by 14 points at the start of the game to dominating the scoreboard after hitting eight triples – his best mark as a professional – and tying the franchise record.
Guard Donovan Mitchell also did his job by scoring 24 points, five assists and three rebounds, while Australian forward Joe Ingles reached 20 points.
Three other players, power forward Royce O’Neale, Croatian forward Bojan Bogdanovic and French center Rudy Gobert, each scored 11 points to complete the list of six of the Jazz with double-digit numbers.
O’Neale scored three 3s in the final 3:02 minutes to help the Jazz control the Sixers in a matchup between the best team in the East and the best team in the West.
The Jazz, with their new triumph, reached the eighth in a row and the nineteenth of the last 20 games they have played to reach a 23-5 mark, the best in the Western Conference and the league.
But it would be Clarkson’s great performance that made the difference and kept Australian guard Ben Simmons’ brilliant night with the Sixers from going unrewarded.
Simmons finished with a career-high double-double of 42 points, 12 assists and nine rebounds, as he assumed a more central role, with the MVP nominee, Cameroonian center Joel Embiid of leave due to injury.
It was Simmons who pushed the Sixers to an initial 14-point lead with a 19-point first quarter, but Clarkson kept the Jazz close and there would be one of the keys that would allow the Utah team to later achieve victory.
Clarkson made his first four 3-pointers and the following shots were also good to finish 13 of 20 from the field, including 8 of 13 from outside the perimeter.
Along with Simmons, forward Tobias Harris also stood out with another double-double of 36 points, 10 rebounds and two assists.
As a reserve, veteran center Dwight Howard got another double-double of 14 points and 12 rebounds, being the best in the team’s interior game, but without his contribution being able to avoid defeat, the third in a row, which leaves them with a mark of 18-10 and leading the Eastern Conference standings.
The Sixers send a warning to the rest of the NBA with an epic comeback … without Embiid
Forward Tobías Harris had 27 points and eight rebounds as the leader of the Philadelphia Sixers, who beat the Indiana Pacers 110-119 at home.
The Sixers trailed by 16 points at the start of the fourth quarter, but closed with a 31-6 run to earn their sixth win in seven games, this time without Cameroonian center Joel Embiid, who was left out with a sore back.
Australian point guard Ben Simmons contributed 21 points, seven assists, six rebounds and four ball recoveries to be another of the key players in the triumph of the Sixers (15-6), who are consolidated as leaders of the Atlantic Division and the Eastern Conference.
The reserve forward, the Turkish Furkan Korkmaz, contributed 17 points as the sixth player. Korkmaz added the lead baskets in the fourth quarter.
While veteran center Dwight Howard, who came out as a backup, imposed his power inside the paint with a double-double of 11 points, 15 rebounds and two blocks, which made him another winning factor for the Sixers.
The base Malcolm Brogdon, with 25 points, was once again the leader of the Pacers attack (11-9), who lost the second consecutive game.
Lithuanian power forward Domantas Sabonis added 21 points and eight rebounds and backup guard Aaron Holiday had 17 for the Pacers, who remain second in the Central Division and dropped to fifth in the Eastern Conference.
The Pacers have lost five of eight games and this time they could not add their fourth consecutive victory in the series between both teams.
RAPTORS 115-102 MAGIC
Power forward Pascal Siakam contributed a double-double of 30 points and 10 rebounds and the Toronto Raptors beat the Orlando Magic 115-102, in a duel of teams with losing records in the Eastern Conference.
The Raptors (8-12) snapped a three-game losing streak.
Point guard Kyle Lowry added a double-double of 12 points with 15 assists, and starting guard Terrence Davis along with backup forward Deandre Bembry each had 12 points.
The Raptors led 58-44 after a first half in which Orlando made just 36 percent of his shots from the field and Montenegrin Swiss center Nikola Vucevic was left with three points.
Rookie point guard Cole Anthony scored 16 points as the Magic’s best scorer (8-13), who lost the third consecutive game and the fifth in the last six games.
Vucevic had a double-double of 15 points and 14 rebounds, which could not be a winning factor, but he surpassed former point guard Scoott Skiles with the most shooting in team history in eighth place.
While power forward Aaron Gordon scored 14 points before he was injured.
Gordon had to leave the game in the third period after suffering an ankle injury, without the team giving more information about his physical condition.
The Orlando team, which started the league 4-0 and was the last NBA team to lose undefeated, has suffered 11 losses in the last 13 games.
Philadelphia 76ers crossed Minnesota Timberwolves differently
The Philadelphia 76ers, the leader of the Eastern Conference in the NBA, reached the 14th victory of the season, beating the Minnesota Timberwolves 118-94, which they hosted at Target Center.
10 matches were played in the NBA. Eastern Conference leader Philadelphia 76ers reached the 14th win of the season, beating Minnesota Timberwolves 118-94, which they hosted at Target Center.
Joel Embiid contributed to the victory with 37 points and 11 rebounds, Tobias Harris 17 points and 11 rebounds, Ben Simmons 11 points and 7 assists, Furkan Korkmaz with 8 points, 3 rebounds and 2 steals in the Sixers.
Malik Beasley scored 22 points and 5 rebounds, Anthony Edwards 15 points, D’Angelo Russell 14 points in the Timberwolves, who lost the season 14.
The consequences of the night:
Charlotte Hornets-Indiana Pacers: 108-105
Washington Wizards-Atlanta Hawks: 100-116
New York Knicks-Cleveland Cavaliers: 102-81
Toronto Raptors-Sacramento Kings: 124-126
New Orleans Pelicans-Milwaukee Bucks: 131-126
Orlando Magic-Los Angeles Clippers: 90-116
Minnesota Timberwolves-Philadelphia 76ers: 94-118
Oklahoma City Thunder-Brooklyn Nets: 125-147
San Antonio Spurs-Denver Nuggets: 119-109
Utah Jazz-Dallas Mavericks: 120-101