Donovan Mitchell unleashes absolutely vicious slam vs. Houston Rockets

Donovan Mitchell unleashes absolutely vicious slam vs. Houston Rockets

Donovan Mitchell unleashes absolutely vicious slam vs. Houston Rockets

"To be honest with you, I was just trying to shoot a floater and grab a rebound, but I just happened to be up there", Mitchell said after the Utah Jazz evened their Western Conference semifinal series with a 116-108 win over the Houston Rockets in Game 2.

Utah came out of a timeout following Gordon's shot and a driving Donovan Mitchell found a wide-open Dante Exum in the corner for a 3-pointer of his own, his second of the game, to give the Jazz the lead back.

Harden agreed, telling reporters his team went out "too lackadaisical" after winning game one easily. Credit to Utah, they came out strong, imposed their will, and hit their open shots.

Mitchell's spectacular slam came at a critical moment in the game. It cut a 19-point Jazz lead to nine at the break, and while not completely unraveling an otherwise excellent half, it certainly clouded the third quarter. The Rockets looked confused in the second half, with Harden struggling in the fourth quarter and Houston's drive-and-kick action stymied.

Ingles drained seven 3-pointers for a Jazz playoff record.

Utah shot splendidly throughout and finished 15 for 32 from behind the arc while posting a 51.2 percentage from the floor overall. With the loss, Houston gives away homecourt advantage to Utah, as games three and four take place at Vivint Smart Home Arena. When the Rockets' second unit labored to build some momentum, Gobert and Favors started converting in the paint as the Jazz repeatedly left the Rockets scrambling defensively to cover the action. James Harden is averaging 31.1 points and 7.9 assists while Chris Paul is averaging 19.3 points and six assists.

"That to me was maybe the most important thing in the game", Jazz coach Quin Snyder said of his team's resilience.

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"Yeah, we flipped it", D'Antoni said. "They were getting layups, dunks, free throws, a little bit of everything".

But they could hold on only so long, because eventually Harden was coming back into the game. The Jazz went back up 86-85 by the end of the period.

Mitchell, speaking to TNT postgame, said of the Jazz's resilience, "That's in our DNA, that's in our character, to withstand the run".

More significantly, the Rockets were poor from three-point range - going just 10-for-37 - and looked out of sync for much of the night; with their bench putting up just 22 points. "I know this coach [Quin Snyder], he is always going to make adjustments".

It was the first time he had finished with less than 20 points in a playoff game, but that was mainly because he was more of a provider on the court, as he finished with 11 assists.

"Just being poised and staying under control was the biggest thing", Mitchell said.

"I thought Dante's dunk was better than mine", Mitchell said.

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