Jazz extend win run; Nuggets score

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    AERIAL BATTLE: Pelicans star Zion Williamson shoots over Jazz center Derrick Favors in first half play. REUTERS PHOTO

    DONOVAN Mitchell scored 28 points and the Utah Jazz blew open a close game in the third quarter to cruise to their sixth win in a row 118-102 over the New Orleans Pelicans on Tuesday (Wednesday in Manila) in Salt Lake City.

    Mitchell was one of six Jazz players with multiple 3-pointers, hitting four of Utah’s 21 treys.

    Joe Ingles (five), Jordan Clarkson (four), Bojan Bogdanovic (three), Royce O’Neale (two) and Georges Niang (two) also had more than one triple for Utah, which shot 50.6 percent overall and 44.7 percent from beyond the arc.

    The Pelicans, who lost for the sixth time in seven games, only made 6 of 26 3-point attempts (23.1 percent) and 45.3 percent from the floor overall.

    New Orleans star Zion Williamson had another strong showing but didn’t get enough help. Williamson finished with 32 points and five rebounds. Brandon Ingram was the only other New Orleans player in double figures, contributing 17 points.

    Clarkson scored 18 off the bench for the Jazz. Ingles added 15 in his return from a three-game absence caused by an Achilles injury, and Rudy Gobert amassed 13 points, 18 rebounds and three blocked shots.

    The Jazz led for most of the first half, but the Pelicans took a 47-46 lead as Ingram capped an 11-0 run.

    Clarkson hit a 3-pointer to snap Utah’s scoreless skid, and the Jazz finished the half on a 9-2 run for a 55-49 lead.

    In the other game, Nikola Jokic had 27 points and 12 rebounds, Paul Millsap added 13 points and a season-high 12 rebounds, and the host Denver Nuggets beat the Oklahoma City Thunder 119-101.

    Monte Morris scored 15 points off the Denver bench. Will Barton scored 13 points, Gary Harris and PJ Dozier added 11 apiece and JaMychal Green had 10 points and eight rebounds.

    The Nuggets outscored the Thunder 66-43 in the second and third quarters, then rested their starters in the fourth. Denver has alternated wins and losses over the past five games.

    Luguentz Dort led Oklahoma City with 20 points. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander scored 14, Darius Bazley added 12 and Isaiah Roby had 10 points and nine rebounds for the Thunder, who lost for the third time in four games.

    Denver led by 13 early in the third quarter before pulling away. Millsap sank a 3-pointer, and after the teams exchanged hoops, Harris made a 3-pointer from the wing to put the Nuggets up 75-56. Two turnovers and a trio of buckets by Oklahoma City cut the deficit to 13 again, but Denver started to put the game away.