Staples Center Los Angeles

Utah Jazz vs. Los Angeles Lakers Pick & Prediction FEB 16TH 2022

NBA | BASKETBALL
TV: SPECSN | ATTSN | ESPN
Logo Utah Jazz
VS
Logo Los Angeles Lakers
0
OPENNER
227

-5 +108
CURRENT
226o -105

-170
MONEYLINE
+150

101
SCORE
106

Fresh off a 6-0 homestand, the Utah Jazz will test their mettle on the road Wednesday night against the Los Angeles Lakers.

But the Jazz also enter the game with five consecutive road defeats, including a 101-95 loss to the Lakers on Jan. 17. Those road issues came in January amid a limited roster.

Donovan Mitchell missed eight games because of a concussion, with seven of those in January. Utah went 2-6 when he was out. Rudy Gobert missed five January games after testing positive for COVID-19. Utah went 1-4.

Gobert was out again for nine consecutive games Jan. 24-Feb. 11 with a left-calf strain, but he returned in Monday's 135-101 blowout home victory over the Houston Rockets. He had 14 points before he was ejected after receiving two technical fouls. Mitchell had a team-leading 30 points while Bojan Bogdanovic had 22.

"I felt strong, I feel great," Gobert said. "I did some pretty explosive movement without thinking about it. I didn't have any extra pain."

Mike Conley scored just two points Monday on 1-of-8 shooting but had 10 assists.

"I think it's really important for the whole team to know that you have the ability to impact the game even if you're not scoring," Jazz coach Quin Snyder said. "When it's not going down, what can you do to help the team win? Mike's play (Monday) showed that."

The Lakers and Jazz will face each other just one more time after Wednesday, a March 31 clash at Utah. The Lakers have won the season series over the Jazz just once since 2010-11.

Los Angeles could use a victory any way it can get it. The Lakers enter Wednesday's game on a three-game losing streak and have dropped seven of their last nine, including 117-115 at Golden State on Saturday.

Like the Jazz, the Lakers also were short-handed in January when Anthony Davis concluded a 17-game absence because of a knee injury. LeBron James recently missed five games because of his own knee issue.

Unlike the Jazz, though, the Lakers have not found success after the return of their stars. James has been back for four games, but the team has still lost each of the last three. He had 26 against the Warriors in a defeat that did show some promise. Russell Westbrook scored 19 on 7-of-13 shooting.

"This (loss) definitely hurts," Lakers coach Frank Vogel said. "But overall, I love how our guys competed."

The only accomplishment to celebrate of late was James passing Kareem Abdul-Jabbar for the most points in NBA history, when combining the regular season and playoffs, with 44,157. James is third in regular-season points (36,526) but is within reach of No. 2 Karl Malone (36,928) and leader Abdul-Jabbar (38,387).

Anthony Davis, who had 16 points against the Warriors, is confident the Lakers are on the brink of a breakthrough.

"Guys had a little more swag (Saturday), a little more confidence, more energy, played with more of a purpose," Davis said. "If we can play like this for the rest of the season, we'll continue to put ourselves in position to be successful."

--Field Level Media

PREDICTION
Utah Jazz
116
111
Los Angeles Lakers

Utah vs. Los Angeles Recap APR 19TH 2021

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope scored 18 of his 32 points in the fourth quarter to help the Los Angeles Lakers hold off the visiting Utah Jazz 113-109 on Sunday and hurt their chances of gaining home-court advantage in the first round of the playoffs.

The Jazz trail the Portland Trail Blazers by two games for fourth place in the Western Conference with two games left for each team. Portland rallied from a seven-point deficit with four minutes left against the visiting Denver Nuggets and won 115-106 about a half hour before the Jazz game ended.

The Jazz own the tiebreaker with Portland.

JaVale McGee had 22 points and eight rebounds, Alex Caruso had 18 points and 11 assists, Mike Muscala had 16 points and eight rebounds, Johnathan Williams had 14 points and eight rebounds off the bench, and Jemerrio Jones grabbed 16 rebounds for the Lakers.

Rudy Gobert had 21 points and 10 rebounds to lead the Jazz. Donovan Mitchell scored 19 points but missed all 10 shots in the second half, and Georges Niang scored 16 off the bench for Utah.

The Jazz took the first double-digit lead for either team at 78-68 with 4:51 left in the third quarter, but Williams scored six points in a 10-0 run that got the Lakers back even.

The Jazz took an 83-81 lead into the fourth quarter, but after Niang made two free throws, an 8-0 run moved the Lakers back ahead 89-85.

Los Angeles didn't give up the lead the rest of the way.

Utah last had the ball with a chance to tie or take the lead when it trailed 93-91 at the midway point of the fourth quarter, but the Jazz missed five straight shots and the Lakers eventually extended the lead to 97-91 with 4:19 left.

The Lakers played their fifth straight game without their top three scorers, LeBron James (groin), Kyle Kuzma (foot) and Brandon Ingram (arm surgery).

The Jazz were without Dante Exum (knee surgery), Derrick Favors (back spasms), Kyle Korver (right knee soreness), Raul Neto (ankle), and Ricky Rubio (quadriceps).

--Field Level Media

 

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