UTAH JAZZ

Keyonte George Scores 31 In Jazz Loss To Heat

Mar 2, 2024, 6:16 PM | Updated: 8:19 pm

SALT LAKE CITY – The Utah Jazz fell to the Miami Heat despite 31 points from rookie Keyonte George.

Jimmy Butler scored 37 points to lead the Heat.

The Jazz return home after going winless on their three-game Eastern Conference road trip.

Keyonte George Joins Elite Jazz Company

After scoring 31, George became just the third rookie in Jazz history to have at least three 30-point games as a rookie.

Darrell Griffith, the only Jazz player to win Rookie of the Year, did it nine times while Donovan Mitchell did it seven times.

Only ten Jazz rookies have ever crossed the 30-point threshold.

“I thought Keyonte was incredibly aggressive the entire night,” Jazz head coach Will Hardy said. “Another night where I’m really pleased with how many threes he found off the dribble.”

George connected on six threes, joining Mitchell as only the second rookie in Jazz history to have at least six made threes twice in a season.

“It’s a sign of respect when they changed the matchup and put Jimmy Butler on you,” Hardy added. “He did a really good job navigating pick and roll. I also thought that he had a good balance of not only shooting threes.”

George shot 12-23 from the floor and added four rebounds and four assists, but turned the ball over five times in the loss.

Rookie Taylor Hendricks added eight points and a game-high 13 rebounds, while Brice Sensabaugh added six points on 2-4 shooting.

“We want to win, but you’ve got to take the good with the bad sometimes,” George said. “You’ve got to understand that we’re still developing as a team, we’re still young.”

Jazz Shorthanded Against Heat

The Jazz were shorthanded in Miami in their loss to the Heat.

Walker Kessler missed his second consecutive game with a right elbow sprain while Jordan Clarkson was out due to an illness.

Lauri Markkanen had another difficult shooting night connecting on just 5-15 shots including 1-6 inside the arc, but still finished with 25 points and six assists.

The forward suffered an injury in the second half after banging knees with Heat forward Bam Adebayo but remained on the court to finish the game.

“He wanted to stay in the game, obviously we’ll get him checked out tonight and see where we go,” Hardy said.

Talen Horton-Tucker entered the rotation in the absence of Clarkson and scored seven points while grabbing eight rebounds. The guard shot just 1-7 from the floor in 20 minutes.

Omer Yurtseven took the spot of Kessler scoring seven points and grabbing five rebounds in 15 minutes.

Jazz Standings Watch

Despite Saturday’s loss the 27-34 Jazz held onto the 11th-worst record in the NBA after the Atlanta Hawks fell to the Brooklyn Nets 114-102.

The Hawks own the 10th-worst record in the NBA, a half-game worse than the Jazz in the standings at 26-34.

The loss did push the Jazz 1.5 games back of the Chicago Bulls who own the league’s 12th-worst record at 28-32.

One game separates the Jazz and the Houston Rockets who own the league’s ninth-worst record at 25-34 before taking on the Phoenix Suns Saturday evening.

The Jazz are now six games back of both the Los Angeles Lakers and the Golden State Warriors for the Play-In Tournament in the West.

Utah Jazz Next Broadcast

The Jazz will face the Wizards on Monday at 7 pm MST in Salt Lake City. The game will be televised on KJZZ, streamed on Jazz+, and can be heard on 97.5 The KSL Sports Zone.


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Ben Anderson is the Utah Jazz insider for KSL Sports and the co-host of Jake and Ben from 10-12p with Jake Scott on 97.5 The KSL Sports Zone. Find Ben on Twitter at @BensHoops or on Instagram @BensHoops.

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