Bogdanovic Scores Career-High To Lead Jazz Past Nuggets, Clinch Northwest Division Title

May 7, 2021, 9:25 PM | Updated: 10:08 pm

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Jazz forward Bojan Bogdanovic scored a career-high to lead Utah to a big divisional victory over the Denver Nuggets.

The Jazz hosted the Nuggets on Friday, May 7.

Bogey’s Big Night

Bogdanovic scored 48 points to lift the Jazz to a 127-120 win over the Nuggets.

Utah clinched the Northwest Division title with the result and locked in a top three seed in the Western Conference playoff picture.

It the first time the Jazz have won their division since the 2016-17 season.

“We remain where we belong, and that’s at the top of the West,” Bogdanovic told Jazz TV during a postgame interview.

The forward’s previous career-high was 44 points in 2016.

It’s the most scored by a Jazz player in the regular season since Karl Malone scored 56 points in 1998.

Bogdanovic scored his total on 16-23 shooting, including 8-11 on three-pointers.

The Jazzman added eight rebounds, two assists, and two steals during his 39 minutes of action.

Game Flow

Utah got off to a slow start and trailed 11-4 after the first three minutes of play.

Early in the game, the Jazz struggled to stop the Nuggets, who scored on six of their first nine possessions.

Thanks for Bogdanovic and Jordan Clarkson, Utah recovered from a double-digit deficit and only trailed by a point at the end of the first quarter.

The second and third quarters featured a lot of similar play from both teams, a fast paced style of basketball.

As the game went to the final 12 minutes, the Nuggets owned a 99-98 lead.

The Jazz played great defense down the stretch, highlighted by impressive block from Rudy Gobert and Trent Forrest, and limited Denver to only 21 points in the fourth quarter.

Bogdanovic, Clarkson, and Georges Niang made timely threes and helped the Jazz win the quarter by eight points and ultimately the game by seven points.

Utah Jazz

The Jazz ended the night shooting 48.3 percent from the field, including 45.7 percent on threes.

In addition to Bogdanovic, Clarkson, Niang, Gobert, and Joe Ingles each scored in double figures.

Clarkson led Utah’s second unit with 21 points on 6-14 shooting from beyond the arc. The Sixth Man of the Year candidate posted a team-high plus-12 rating during his 37 minutes on the hardwood.

Gobert had a nice stat line of 13 points, nine rebounds, two assists, one steal, and two blocks.

Denver Nuggets

The Nuggets shot 51.8 percent overall and 44.7 percent from distance.

MVP candidate Nikola Jokic had 24 points on 9-11 field goals. He also added nine rebounds, 13 assists, and one block.

Michael Porter Jr. led Denver with 31 points.

With the result, the Nuggets fell back to five full games behind the Jazz in the Western Conference standings.

Up Next

With the win, the Jazz improved their NBA-best record this season to 49-18, including 30-4 at home.

Donovan Mitchell and Mike Conley continue to be out of the lineup due to injury. Mitchell was reevaluated on May 7 and will be looked at again in one week.

Utah’s next contest is home game is against the Houston Rockets on Saturday, May 8 at 8 p.m. (MDT). The game will broadcast on AT&T SportsNet and 97.5 FM.

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