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Blog: Suns Durant Sinks Jazz In Double Overtime

Nov 19, 2023, 9:07 PM

Kevin Durant #35 of the Phoenix Suns derfends Lauri Markkanen #23 of the Utah Jazz

SALT LAKE CITY – The Utah Jazz fell to the Phoenix Suns 126-123 in double overtime despite 38 points from All-Star Lauri Markkanen.

The Suns were led by Kevin Durant who scored 39 while Devin Booker added 26.

Talen Horton-Tucker had 25 points for the Jazz off the bench.

First Quarter

Will Hardy said before the game that Lauri Markkanen was working on becoming a better halfcourt isolation scorer starting with the ball above the three-point line, rather than simply scoring on catch-and-shoot opportunities. Markkanen had five first quarter points on strong iso drives.

The Suns answered the Jazz’s 7-2 start with a 14-3 run midway through the quarter, getting easy buckets in transition.

Just like Friday night, it took a minute for the Jazz to figure out the timing when double-teaming Kevin Durant, but they forced two first quarter turnovers with blindside help.

Talen Horton-Tucker gave the Jazz a strong boost in the first quarter scoring eight points on 3-3 shooting, matching the total scoring of the Suns bench.

After one the Jazz and Suns were tied at 30.

Second Quarter

The Suns opened the second on a 19-11 run as they found a rhythm with Durant in the halfcourt.

A lot of the Jazz success on the offensive end came on second-chance points as the Suns were strong on defense, but struggled to finish possessions.

After a very quiet first half, both Keyonte George and Jordan Clarkson provided some juice late in the second quarter connecting with Lauri Markkanen on two assists, while George had a highlight-reel dunk which got the fans engaged.

At the half, the Jazz trailed the Suns 61-56.

Third Quarter

The Jazz opened the half with a 5-0 run to tie the game at 61 as the Suns struggled to hit contested shots.

Offensively the Jazz repeatedly attacked Grayson Allen to moderate success. It will be interesting to see how the Suns use Allen when Bradley Beal returns to the lineup.

With the game tied at 70 and the Jazz looking to take their first lead of the second half, Jordan Clarkson picked up an offensive foul, then a technical, then committed an illegal take foul, but it resulted in only one point for the Suns.

Both teams could make the argument that they should have taken control in the third, but missed shots, and overall sloppy play prevented either roster from taking charge.

The officials started to lose control of the game late in the third making some tough calls on both ends, though the whistle largely benefited Phoenix as they earned repeated trips to the free-throw line with the Jazz in the bonus.

After three the Jazz trailed the Suns 85-84.

Fourth Quarter

The Jazz shot just 7-30 to open the game from three, but knocked down two quick deep balls in the fourth quarter to take a 90-88 lead with 10:28 left to play.

Collin Sexton gave the Jazz a major boost on both ends in the fourth quarter knocking down threes, while being the first player to 50-50 balls.

Durant and Devin Booker took over for Phoenix late connecting on several difficult mid-range jump shots.

Booker missed a game-winner in the final second as the game went to overtime tied at 115.


The Suns opened the extra period on a 5-0 run as Durant repeatedly found open shooters off the Jazz aggressive double-teaming scheme.

The Jazz meanwhile struggled to get easy shots to close the game as Jordan Clarkson repeatedly attempted to draw fouls against Suns defenders.

The Suns tried to play the free-throw game, fouling up three in the final 10 seconds and it backfired.

Markkenen sunk two free throws to cut the deficit to one, then Eric Gordon missed one of his free throws leaving the Suns with only a two point lead.

Collin Sexton’s putback layup as time expired tied the game at 127 to send the game to double overtime.

Second Overtime

Durant scored the first eight points in second overtime for the Suns to build a 135-130 lead.

The Jazz struggled to get good looks in the final period as exhaustion clearly played an impact late in the game.

However, a Markkanen fadeaway jumper and a John Collins corner tied the game up with 59 seconds left to play.

Former Jazzman Grayson Allen nailed a three, the Suns first non-Durant points of the second overtime to build a 138-135 lead in the final minute.

Durant was whistled for a foul against Markkanen on a last-second three, but officials overturned the call on a Suns challenge handing the Jazz their ninth loss of the season.

Ultimately the Jazz were unable to fully close the gap and fell 140-137.

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Ben Anderson is the Utah Jazz insider for KSL Sports and the co-host of Jake and Ben from 10-12p with Jake Scott on 97.5 The KSL Sports Zone. Find Ben on Twitter at @BensHoops or on Instagram @BensHoops.

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Blog: Suns Durant Sinks Jazz In Double Overtime