Sports

Grizzlies strong in final seconds to topple Jazz


Memphis Grizzlies guard Ja Morant (12) reacts during the second half against the LA Clippers at FedExForum.

FILE – Memphis Grizzlies guard Ja Morant (12). Mandatory Credit: Justin Ford-USA TODAY Sports

Ja Morant scored a game-high 32 points and assisted teammate Jaren Jackson Jr. on the game-winning basket with 6.7 seconds remaining as the Memphis Grizzlies pulled off a surprising 119-118 victory over the Utah Jazz on Monday night in Salt Lake City.

Jackson Jr. finished with 26 points, grabbed eight rebounds and won a critical jump ball in the waning moments as Memphis bounced back from an embarrassing 43-point loss in Minnesota on Saturday night.

Donovan Mitchell scored 18 points but only hit 5 of 20 shots. The most glaring miss was a game-winning attempt in the final seconds. Rudy Gobert contributed 23 points, 13 rebounds and five blocked shots, but couldn’t get the tip advantage in a key late moment.

Former Grizzlies player Mike Conley Jr. scored 19 points with eight assists.

Desmond Bane added 28 points for the Grizzlies, who snapped the Jazz’s three-game winning streak in a rematch of last postseason’s first-round playoff matchup. Utah won that series 4-1.

Bojan Bogdanovic scored a team-high 24 points, including two 3-pointers in the final minutes, which seemed to put the Jazz on track for a win. Bogdanovic’s final 3, of the seven he made on the night, capped an 8-0 run that gave the Jazz a 118-112 lead with 1:28 remaining.

However, Utah didn’t score again, and Morant and Jackson chipped away at the Jazz’s lead with four free throws before the late-game heroics.

Morant’s miss on his second attempt — which came after he stole the ball from Mitchell — left the Grizzlies down two with 14.8 seconds remaining. The referees then made a game-altering call on what appeared to be a defensive rebound. After the ball was touched near the rim and the Jazz gained possession following the miss, a referee blew the whistle. A review determined that there was no goaltending and had the teams do a jump ball for possession.

After Jackson Jr. won the tip over Gobert, Morant found Jackson Jr. open on the elbow, and the Memphis big man swished a 3-pointer for a one-point lead.

The Jazz led 103-96 with 8:32 remaining and had a chance to gain some insurance, but Mitchell turned the ball over. The Grizzlies later took the lead at 112-110 after a 9-1 run.

Conley tied the game, and then Bogdanovic hit back-to-back 3s to set up the dramatic ending.

The teams had identical offensive outputs in the first and second quarters, with the Jazz scoring 30 in each quarter and the Grizzlies putting up 27 points. Utah took a 60-54 lead into the halftime break after a buzzer-beating corner 3 by Royce O’Neale.

Field Level Media

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