Ricky Rubio poured in 34 points on 11-of-14 shooting from the floor and added nine assists to lead the Utah Jazz to a 120-111 victory over the San Antonio Spurs on Saturday at the AT&T Center in San Antonio, Texas.
Utah led just 110-107 after a layup by the Spurs’ Manu Ginobili with 2:29 to play but was solid in the final minutes, as Rubio and Rudy Gobert (11 points) each made four free throws to thwart any chance of a San Antonio comeback.
The Jazz have won five straight games and six out of their past seven outings.
Royce O’Neale added 18 points for the Jazz, who have beaten San Antonio both times the teams have played this season. Derrick Favors and Raul Neto scored 14 and 12 points, respectively, and Joe Ingles hit for 10 as Utah won on the road for the fourth straight game.
The Spurs got 31 points from LaMarcus Aldridge while Ginobili added 13, Patty Mills and Tony Parker scored 11 each and Dejounte Murray hit for 10 points for San Antonio, which lost for the second straight home game. Pau Gasol pulled down a game-high 11 rebounds for the Spurs.
The Jazz led 61-49 at halftime thanks to a 57.5 percent-50 percent edge in field goal shooting and a 10-of-15 showing from the free throw line; San Antonio took just four free throws in the first half and converted only two of those.
Rubio scored 23 points in the half (more than twice his average per game) to lead Utah, and the Jazz’s reserves outscored San Antonio’s bench players 17-10.
Aldridge kept the Spurs within striking distance with 18 points in the half, punctuated by a tip-in basket at the halftime buzzer.
Utah led by as many as 13 points in the third quarter and had a 12-point lead until Danny Green put in a 25-foot 3-pointer in the period’s final second to bring the Spurs back within 87-78.
San Antonio opened the fourth quarter on a 15-7 run that brought it to within 94-93 with 7:29 to play.
Utah played without super-rookie Donovan Mitchell, who was ruled out of the game about an hour before tipoff with flu-like symptoms. Mitchell scored 40 points in the Jazz’s 129-97 win at Phoenix on Friday.
The Jazz head to New Orleans for a game on Monday against the Pelicans while the Spurs fly to Phoenix for the first game of their annual Rodeo Road Trip, necessitated when the San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo take over the AT&T Center for a three-and-a half-week run beginning Monday.
—Field Level Media