SALT LAKE CITY – The ball bounced off the back of the rim after Joe Ingles launched a wing 3-pointer in the final minutes of the third quarter. Ricky Rubio, who took the curve once or twice, finally found him near the Midcourt and turned to look at his watch. Without much time, he pulled up one leg and fired at a 28-foot runner at the buzzer.
It was that kind of night for Rubio. It was against the NBA's triple-double-king Rubio who scored the magic trio of the rounds – 26 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists – and Russell Westbrook, who had a strangely atypical night, scored 14 points on 5 of 17 shoots Eight Turnovers) when Utah Jazz won Game 3 over the Oklahoma City Thunder 1
Ricky Rubio beats third. Quarter number with a 3-pointer from one leg.
Jazz has set up a roster that focuses on the team and matches the mindset that any player can lift the group at any time. With the way rookie Donovan Mitchell exploded on his way to becoming a superstar, it seemed that jazz was up to it. But with their stifling defense, which was always present, and Mitchell, who had a few problems, it was Rubio who answered the call.
The critical moments of Rubio's career night came in the second quarter, when the thunder took control at both ends. rise to 12 and some dominance on both sides of the ball are flashing. Nothing much happened for Utah, and it was not as if a lightbulb clicked over Rubio's absolutely sensational samurai ponytail – it was more of a reluctant takeover when he accepted the open midrange jumpers the thunder presented and the wave rode from the dynamics of there.
"I think the first two games, I was not effective in the midrange area," said Rubio. "It was something I worked on, I felt fine, but it did not go in, but tonight it felt good when the first couple went in. It's just how we played open shots and it's easy to fire when you're open. "
It left several moments during the night for an outrageously charged native crowd – spread out in a glorious pattern of yellow, red, and orange – to sing : "Ru-bi -O!" All that was missing was that he crowed at Peter Pan.