Jazz recover from sluggish start to beat Blazers and arrest three-game slide
Gordon Hayward and the Utah Jazz stoop the bleeding. AP

GORDON Hayward scored 22 points and George Hill added 19 as the Utah Jazz snapped a three-game losing streak against the Portland Trail Blazers with a 111-88 win on Wednesday in Salt Lake City (Thursday, Manila time).

Bucking poor shooting in the first half, Hayward scored 13 points in a 20-4 run in the third quarter that gave Utah a 15-point lead.

Hayward passed Deron Williams for No. 8 on the Jazz's career scoring list with 7,588.

Joe Ingles scored 18 for the Jazz who ended a three-game slump just before the NBA All-Star break. Rudy Gobert had 13 points and 12 rebounds.

Center Jusuf Nurkic made his debut with the Blazers after being traded from Denver on Jan. 29. The Nuggets sent Nurkic and a 2017 first-round pick for Mason Plumlee, a 2018 second-round pick and cash considerations. Nurkic scored 13 points and had seven rebounds in 21 minutes off the bench.

Despite the poor shooting, the Jazz led 40-37 at the half. Portland reduced the deficit but were never able to get closer than seven points.

The Jazz defense managed to contain Portland’s scoring duo of Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum who were responsible for torching Utah in its previous meetings. Both finished below their averages with Lillard ending with 13 points and McCollum, 18.

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