Grayson Allen scored a career-best 23 points on 10-of-14 shooting as the Utah Jazz won their season-best seventh straight game, an easy 119-98 triumph over the Sacramento Kings on Friday night in Salt Lake City. Utah scored the game's first 13 points and never trailed.
Donovan Mitchell recorded 23 points and nine assists as red-hot Utah won for the 12th time in 13 games. Rudy Gobert contributed 17 points, 11 rebounds, four blocked shots and three steals, and Joe Ingles added 17 points and seven assists for the Jazz. Utah has won by 20 or more points on seven occasions during the 13-game stretch. The Jazz (49-30) are one win away from reaching the 50-victory mark for the second time in three seasons.
Buddy Hield scored 17 points for the Kings, and Marvin Bagley III added 13 points and 12 rebounds despite 4-of-16 shooting. Yogi Ferrell tallied 13 points, and Nemanja Bjelica and Bogdan Bogdanovic scored 10 points apiece. The Kings (39-41) need to win their final two games to reach .500 and end a streak of 12 straight losing seasons. Sacramento hosts the New Orleans Pelicans on Sunday and finishes the season by visiting the Portland Trail Blazers on Wednesday.
Kings point guard De'Aaron Fox departed in the second quarter due to a right foot injury. Power forward Derrick Favors (back) and swingman Kyle Korver (knee) each remained sidelined for the Jazz. Point guard Ricky Rubio (hamstring) returned after a one-game absence but played just five first-quarter minutes before exiting with a quadriceps injury.
Utah shot 51.8 per cent from the field, including 15 of 33 from 3-point range. Sacramento shot 41.3 per cent from the floor and was 5 of 21 from behind the arc. Allen scored 19 points on 8-of-8 shooting as Utah sped out to a 70-44 halftime advantage. Allen had 13 first-quarter points and added the first two baskets of the second quarter as the Jazz built a 39-20 lead. The margin reached 68-38 when Gobert split two free throws with 2:09 remaining in the half.
The Kings were unable to dent the deficit in the third quarter, and the Utah lead was again 30 when Royce O'Neale drained a 3-pointer with 3:58 remaining. The Jazz led 96-70 entering the final stanza and continued to lead comfortably over the final 12 minutes.
(With inputs from agencies.)