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Brown's 3-pointer lifts Celtics to 97-94 on jazz



SALT LAKE CITY – Jaylen Brown's 3-pointer gave the short-handed Boston Celtics more than a perfect road trip.

It gave him some much needed rest.

Brown's basket, 0.3 seconds ahead, gave the Celtics a 97-94 victory over Utah Jazz on Wednesday night.

"I just hoped it went in there, man," Brown said. "I had nothing left for OT, so I'm just happy to win."

Boston did not overshoot jazz for the last 2:25 and ended the game 9-0. Brown's winner came immediately after Joe Ingles missed a jazz free-kick 16 seconds from time.

Jayson Tatum increased the Celtics by 16, who despite their injuries were able to win their fifth game in a row. Terry Rozier scored 13 points

With Kyrie Irving following a knee replacement and Marcus Morris and Al Horford both failing in ankle injuries, the Celtics ended a 4-0 away win over Gordon Hayward Utah without being injured at the season opener.

This last win attempt came because Boston got hold late in the game. Utah no longer scored after Jae Crowder hung on the ring to bring jazz to 94-88.

"We played more zone tonight than in two years," said Celtics coach Brad Stevens. "Their high pick and roll gave us a fit and we had to play some double bigs there for a while, the guys just fought and hung around."

Donovan Mitchell scored 22 points for Utah. Ricky Rubio scored 14 points, 10 assists and eight rebounds and Crowder added 16 points from the bench. The jazz (42-33) lost for the third time in five games.

Utah seemed to retain control in the third quarter, forcing 10 turnovers and turning them into 15 points. It helped jazz break down a 15-0 run, which was also powered by three Rubio and Crowder 3-point finishers to reach a 69:58 lead.

"They squeezed us well," Stevens said. "They switched many screens on and off, they were really physical with us and in our bodies, Rubio showed a good performance at the time of the attack."

Boston was pushed back in the fourth quarter. Two consecutive threes from Rozier and Shane Larkin helped reduce the deficit to 85-84. Crowder and Mitchell responded with back-to-back layups to keep jazz in front.

Boston kept coming back and tying it to 94 on Tatum's Dunk with 1:09 left.

Utah had a 13-0 run in the first quarter 18-12 minutes ahead. Rudy Gobert had three baskets, including a launch pad to accelerate the run. Boston missed 14 of 17 shots and scored six points overall over the quarter's final 8:53.

The teams reversed roles during the second quarter. Boston found his shot rhythm and shut Utah at the other end of the square. The Celtics stormed into the lead after a 16-2 run and took the lead 46:34 towards the end of the quarter. Brown put Boston in front with back-to-back baskets, covering the spurt with his second 3-pointer of the game. Utah missed six of seven shots during the run.

"We sometimes had too little focus," Mitchell said. "Sometimes, like the first game, we did not play offensively and that puts too much pressure on our defense."

TIP-INS

Celtics: Boston has achieved 18 total sales and made 24 points on these sales. … Rozier scored 11 of his 13 points in the fourth quarter. … The Celtics went 12 out of 21 from 3-point range, including five brands in the fourth quarter.

Jazz: Utah made five 3-pointers in the third quarter after shooting 4 of 16 out of the perimeter in the first half. … Mitchell built the jazz rally in the third quarter and scored 10 points in the first four minutes of the second half. … The jazz shot in the second half 20 free throws after a free throw before half time.

FANTASTIC FINISHES

The Celtics completed their 14th double-digit comeback this season, second only to the NBA. Boston have now scored five free-kick goals in the last five seconds of a game this season, most of each NBA team.

Brown attributes the character of the team and the refusal to give up in adversity.

"I do not think it's really new," Brown said. "We do it all year, I know how we won, last minute recordings and stuff like that were big, but we do it all year, it's nothing new for us."

UP NEXT [19659006] Celtics: Host the Raptors on Saturday.

Jazz: Host the Grizzlies on Friday.

Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, transmitted, rewritten or redistributed.


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