Lamar Stevens scored a career-high 23 points and Laurri Markkanen had 20 as the Cleveland Cavaliers handed the Utah Jazz their fourth-straight loss with a surprising 111-91 blowout victory Wednesday night in Salt Lake City.
Stevens, who came into the game averaging 4.5 points, hit 10 of 15 shots overall. He scored 15 during the decisive third quarter when Cleveland surged way ahead of the struggling Jazz with a 21-0 run.
Cleveland improved to 3-1 on its six-game road trip after shooting 53.1 percent overall, outrebounding the Jazz 50-32 and winning the assists battle 28-11.
Utah, playing shorthanded once again, only shot 40 percent.
Jordan Clarkson scored 22 points off the bench for the Jazz, who were missing eight players, including leading big men Rudy Gobert and Hassan Whiteside. Six players and multiple coaches are in the league’s health and safety protocol.
Donovan Mitchell added 17 points but struggled from the floor, making just 6 of 16 shots. Mike Conley was the only other Jazz starter in double digits with 12 points. Bojan Bogdanovic only had nine points on 3-of-14 shooting.
Stevens ignited the game-changing 21-0 run in the third quarter for the Cavs. After Bogdanovic hit a 3 to cut the Cavs’ game-long lead down to four, Stevens drained scored on five consecutive possessions, beginning with a 3-pointer followed by buckets on the ensuing four trips down the court.
Cleveland led 83-58 after that massive scoring spurt, which concluded with a Stevens dunk before Clarkson finally scored again for Utah. The Cavs ended up outscoring the Jazz 30-16 in the third quarter. Utah went six minutes without scoring in the period.
Stevens finished with 15 points in the third, nearly equaling his season-high for scoring in just one quarter (17 vs. Warriors).
Joe Ingles’ return from the health and safety protocol was short-lived. He was tossed in the first half after being called for two technical fouls.
The Jazz only scored two points in the first four minutes of the game, falling behind 9-2. Utah used an 11-0 run at the end of the first quarter to trim the Cavs’ lead to 27-24.
Cleveland, which never trailed, led 58-52 at halftime.
–Field Level Media
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