Donovan Mitchell leads Utah Jazz to series-opening win over Los Angeles Clippers

Donovan Mitchell, left, scored 45 points for the Utah Jazz
Donovan Mitchell, left, scored 45 points for the Utah Jazz (AP)
7:27am, Wed 09 Jun 2021
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Donovan Mitchell stacked up 45 points to lead the Utah Jazz to a thrilling 112-109 win in their Western Conference semi-final series opener against the Los Angeles Clippers.

The visiting Clippers had the best of the start, leading 25-18 after the first quarter and 60-47 at half-time.

But with Mitchell to the fore, the Jazz got going to live up to their number one seeding by erasing the deficit to level the scores level by the last quarter before holding on in a tense finish.

Jordan Clarkson and Bojan Bogdanovic contributed 18 points each for Utah, while Rudy Gobert had 10 points and 13 rebounds.

Kawhi Leonard had 23 points for the Clippers, Paul George had 20 with 11 rebounds and Luke Kennard scored 18. They meet again in Utah on Thursday.

In the other match, Joel Embiid scored 40 points and Shake Milton added 14 in 14 minutes as the Philadelphia 76ers levelled their series against the Atlanta Hawks.

Milton was instrumental in a 14-0 run for the Sixers across the third and fourth quarters, which propelled the home side to a 118-102 win.

Tobias Harris scored 22 for the Sixers and Seth Curry 21, while Trae Young top scored for the Hawks with 21 points alongside Danilo Gallinari.

The best-of-seven series sits at 1-1, with game three to take place on Friday in Atlanta.

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