NBA Basketball
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99
Final 1 2 3 4 Tot
Utah 34 22 22 21 99
Oklahoma City 29 12 37 29 107
107
6:30 PM PT7:30 PM MT8:30 PM CT9:30 PM ET1:30 GMT9:30 6:30 PM MST8:30 PM EST5:30 UAE (+1)03:3021:30 ET8:30 PM CTNaN:� , April 25, 2018
Chesapeake Energy Arena, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma  Attendance: 18,203

Thunder try to avoid elimination against Jazz

According to STATS
According to STATS

Utah Jazz at Oklahoma City Thunder

  1. The Jazz defeated the Thunder 113-96 in Game 4 to take a 3-1 series lead. This is the first time Utah has won at least two straight postseason games at home since 2010. Oklahoma City has now lost eight straight playoff games on the road dating back to the 2016 postseason.
  2. With a win tonight, Utah will advance to the second round of the postseason for the second straight year. The last time the Jazz advanced to at least the second round in consecutive postseasons was in 2007 and 2008.
  3. Since moving to Oklahoma City for the 2008-09 season, the Thunder have fallen behind 3-1 in a best-of-seven series four previous times; the team failed to win any of those series. The last team to overcome a 3-1 deficit in a first round best-of-seven series was the 2005-06 Phoenix Suns (defeated Los Angeles Lakers).
  4. Donovan Mitchell led the Jazz in Game 4 with 33 points. Mitchell is the first rookie to score at least 20 points in each of his first four postseason games since Arvydas Sabonis did it for the Portland Trail Blazers in the 1996 postseason.
  5. Paul George has made 17 three-pointers in the series, second most by any player this postseason (Khris Middleton, Mil -- 18). George's career high for a single postseason series is 19, against both the Hawks and Heat in 2014.
  6. Utah's 109.5 points per game in the series would be the fifth-highest scoring average in a playoff series in franchise history, and the team's highest since averaging 110.5 points in a first round series win over the Nuggets in 2010.
(Photo by Gene Sweeney Jr./Getty Images)

Oklahoma City was built this offseason around three All-Stars with the hopes of contending for the Western Conference crown.

The Utah Jazz started the year 18-26 without center Rudy Gobert. But Gobert returned and the Jazz rolled off 11 straight wins into Valentine's Day with the help of a surprise rookie of the year contender.

One more win and the Jazz will reach the second round for the second straight year. They'll send the Thunder home with a second straight first-round exit -- despite Oklahoma City's overhauled, star-studded roster.

After losing the first game on the road, Utah won decisively in each of the past three games, including a 17-point victory in Game 4 -- a game the Thunder called a must-win in Salt Lake City.

"It's the playoffs, it's gonna be war," Utah point guard Ricky Rubio, who had a triple-double in Game 3, told the Salt Lake Tribune after Utah's 113-96 victory in Game 4. "We know that it's gonna be another war next game. We just have to be tough but at the same time, mentally ready for that."

Game 5 is set for 9:30 p.m. EST Wednesday at Chesapeake Energy Arena.

Jazz rookie Donovan Mitchell, who averaged 20 points per game during the regular season, has averaged 27.6 points during the past three games -- taking his play to another level to lead a balanced Jazz attack that has five players averaging in double figures. Mitchell, who was the 13th overall pick in last year's draft, has scored 110 points through the first four games, the most by a rookie in his first four games since Michael Jordan's 117 in 1985, according to nba.com.

"To be honest, a lot of this is surreal. I'm just taking it game-by-game and not really getting caught up in the big picture," Mitchell told the Salt Lake City Tribune. "Just focusing on game-by-game. My teammates have helped me out a lot as far as that goes. But we're playing together."

Oklahoma City point guard Russell Westbrook picked up four fouls before halftime in Game 4 and was fined $10,000 for an altercation with Gobert late in the game. Luckily for the Thunder, he was not suspended following his altercation with the Utah center.

Westbrook's foul trouble has hardly been the Thunder's biggest issue.

Oklahoma City was inconsistent much of the year, but it has had to contend with shooting woes from offseason acquisition Carmelo Anthony, who has hit just 25 percent of his 3-pointers in the first four games of the playoffs.

"We gotta win, nothing to it," Anthony said after the Game 4 loss. "We've just gotta win. We can sit here and say what we gotta do, or what we didn't do or what we did do, but it comes down to having the will to win that game Wednesday and forcing a Game 6 back in Utah."

Winning in Utah won't to be easy, where the Jazz have won six straight. Oklahoma City has to get back to Salt Lake City first and stave off elimination. But Utah hasn't lost three straight games since Gobert's return to the lineup in mid-January.

"Every game's been physical," Gobert said to reporters. "We just got to watch the tape, see how much better we can get and get ready to play basketball."

Updated April 24, 2018

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