Ricky Rubio poured in 23 points on 5-of-6 shooting from beyond the arc to lead five teammates in double-figure scoring as the Utah Jazz romped past the Minnesota Timberwolves 121-97 on Sunday at the Target Center in Minneapolis, Minn. in a game with major postseason implications for both teams.
Utah led by 11 at halftime and poured it on in the second half, forging as much as a 29-point lead in the fourth quarter to run away with the contest.
The victory allowed the Jazz (44-33) to leapfrog Minnesota (44-34) into sixth place in the Western Conference standings. Both teams are part of a group of seven squads separated by four games for the No. 4-10 spots in the West, with just five of those teams earning places in the postseason.
Donovan Mitchell added 21 points for the Jazz, with Derrick Favors scoring 16, Dante Exum and Jonas Jerebko hitting for 14 and 13 points, respectively, and Jae Crowder adding 10 points for Utah. Rudy Gobert led all players with 13 rebounds.
Utah’s bench outscored the Timberwolves reserves 50-26 as the Jazz won their second straight game and seventh in their past 10 outings.
Andrew Wiggins led the Timberwolves with 23 points while Karl-Anthony Towns scored 20, Tyus Jones scored 15 and Aaron Brooks added 12 points. The loss snapped a two-game win streak for Minnesota
Utah led 61-50 at halftime behind Rubio’s 16 points, 10 from Favors and 8 each from Exum and Jerebko.
Wiggins paced Minnesota with 17 points and Towns added 11 in the first half.
Utah expanded its lead to 87-71 after three quarters as Rubio added seven more points and Mitchell started getting hot, scoring eight points in the first four minutes of the period.
The Jazz return home to host the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday while Minnesota is off until Thursday, when the Timberwolves begin a back-to-back at the Nuggets and the Lakers.
—Field Level Media