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Playoffs 2019

NBA Playoffs 2019: Four Takeaways as the Utah Jazz avoid elimination with Game 4 win over the Houston Rockets

#Mitchell
(NBA Getty Images)

What a game!

The Utah Jazz were determined to not be swept out of the playoffs and it showed all through the game.

Behind a red-hot Donovan Mitchell in the fourth quarter, the Jazz clinched Game 4, 107-91 and forced a Game 5 back in Houston in a couple of days.

Here's four key takeaways from the Jazz's gutsy performance:

Donovan Mitchell's fourth quarter

And that is how you save your team's season.

Donovan Mitchell went OFF in the fourth quarter, scoring 19 of his 31 points in the period on 6-of-12 shooting, outscoring the Rockets 19-12 by himself.

Mitchell entered the fourth quarter shooting just 5-of-14 for the game, but when it mattered most the second-year man turned up the heat, leading the Jazz out of the gates on a 15-1 run, with Mitchell scoring 13 of those points.

After missing a potential game-tying three at the end of Game 4, Mitchell bounced back in style, electrifying the home crowd with highlight after highlight.

With the Jazz leading 85-80, Mitchell buried back-to-back threes to give the Jazz a commanding 11-point lead and they never looked back.

Utah's first quarter run

Just like Game 3, backed by their loud crowd, the Jazz came out energetic on both ends of the floor.

They scored a series-high 32 points on 11-of-22 shooting (50.0%) from the field, 4-of-8 from beyond the arc and 6-of-6 from the free-throw line.

Not only was their offence clicking but the Jazz also held the Rockets to just 24 points, their third-lowest quarter tally of the series so far. The Jazz also forced six turnovers and converted them into 10 points.

Their eight-point lead is tied for the most they have outscored the Rockets in a quarter so far this series

The biggest contribution of the period came from Jae Crowder (5-of-5 shooting) and Ricky Rubio (4-of-6 shooting). Rudy Gobert didn't score but had 3 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 blocks and a tied game-high +14 after the first 12 minutes.

Jazz's defence and paint domination

The Jazz's defence showed up in Game 4 and how.

The held the Rockets to a series-low of 91 points while forcing them 16 turnovers, which they turned into 21 points.

While the Rockets hit 17 threes on the night, none of them came in the fourth quarter as the Jazz clamped down on defence, smothering the perimeter, getting out to shooters and out-hustling the Rockets, limiting them to just 12 points in 12 minutes, all from Harden and Paul.

The Jazz absolutely dominated the Rockets on the boards and in the paint, outrebounding them by 17 and outscoring them by 30 points in the paint.

Bench play

Other than Game 1, where the Rockets reserves outscored their counterparts 35-16, the Jazz's second unit was only marginally better than their opponents.

In Game 2, the Jazz's bench outscored the Rockets' bench 38-30 and in Game 3, they outscored the Rockets' bench 34-29.

In Game 4, however, the Rockets only received five points from their bench, all from Austin Rivers. While the Rockets' bench only shot 2-of-16 in Game 4, their Jazz counterparts went for 28, which included double-doubles from Derrick Favors (12 points, 11 rebounds) and Royce O'Neale (11 points, 11 rebounds).

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