SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — George Hill scored a season-high 34 points and the Utah Jazz handled the Brooklyn Nets wire-to-wire in a 112-97 victory Friday night.
The Jazz snapped a two-game losing streak and extended their lead for the No. 4 Western Conference playoff spot by 1 1/2 games over the Los Angeles Clippers.
Utah put the game away with a 19-5 stretch in the third quarter, capped by Rudy Gobert’s alley-oop dunk from Dante Exum.
Utah had great ball movement on offense and Brooklyn’s defense never got the Jazz out of rhythm. On the other end, Quincy Acy scored a season-high 18 points and Brook Lopez had 17 — the only Nets to consistently get anything going on the offensive end.
The Jazz took a 60-51 lead into halftime after a hot start in the first quarter. Utah scored 38 points in the in first 12 minutes, its second-most in the quarter this season.
Hill and Favors combined for 25 first-quarter points and as the Jazz shot 65.0 percent from the field in the quarter.
Nets: Friday was the fourth game of an eight-game road trip that has spanned both sides of the All-Star break. — Joe Harris did not return after halftime and was being evaluated for a concussion. — Lopez passed Richard Jefferson for the third-most minutes played in franchise history.
Jazz: Rodney Hood missed his second consecutive game with knee soreness. — Joe Johnson didn’t play due to left groin soreness. — The Jazz are 14-1 when Hill scores 20-plus points.
Jeremy Lin played in his fourth game since missing 26 games with a strained left hamstring. Lin signed with the Nets during the offseason, but has missed 44 games this season. Nets coach Kenny Atkinson said he’ll gradually increase Lin’s minutes. He finished with seven points in 17 minutes Friday.
“He’s making me a better coach, I know that,” Atkinson said. “There’s the experience. Against Sacramento (on Wednesday), him and Brook, the comfort level that they have. It’s what we thought when we brought him in. The little games that he’s played with us, it’s kind of what I thought.”
Nets: Brooklyn travels to face Damian Lillard and the Portland Trail Blazers on Saturday.
Jazz: Utah travels to face the Sacramento Kings and newly acquired Buddy Hield.
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