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Lakers able to take win over Utah Jazz, 100-97, in stride

Jordan Clarkson, Wayne Ellington lead second victory in a row, but celebration kept in check

Nick Young understood why so many people were annoyed with the behavior of the Lakers.

It's just that Young preferred to take the middle ground regarding Sunday night's celebration after the victory over Boston that so disgusted Lakers Coach Byron Scott and Kobe Bryant.

Young didn't play during the Lakers' stirring 100-97 over the Utah Jazz on Wednesday night at EnergySolutions Arena because of a swollen left knee.

And the Lakers didn't celebrate despite winning back-to-back games for the first time since Dec. 12-14, with rookie Jordan Clarkson scoring a career-high 22 points, Wayne Ellington producing his first double-double with 15 points and a career-high 10 rebounds and Robert Sacre's game-icing free throws.

The Lakers were excited to pull this one out despite Jordan Hill's inexplicable foul on Derrick Favors in the final seconds that led to a three-point play that Scott said "probably was why I have a headache." However, they knew better than to celebrate.

"You could see that one [Boston] game we shouldn't be doing that [celebration]," Clarkson said. "Coach got on us a little bit after that. But it's a good feeling."

Young understood why Scott said the celebration showed a lack of "professionalism."

"I see where they are coming from," Young said. "But also at the same time, I still get excited to win. We're doing something right. Even though we've only won [15] games, it's still a win to me. I can't pose, can't do nothing when you lose. So when you finally get that one win, you've got to really enjoy it."

It was until Bryant went on "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" on Monday night did the celebration come to light and only after Bryant made faces as a way of showing his displeasure.

The celebration went viral Tuesday and the sports world was taking shots at the Lakers. Young said he hasn't heard from Bryant.

"I think Kobe in particular made everybody look at it different," Young said. "We finally won a game. We were out there celebrating. We don't get wins every day here. When we do get one, we get happy winning. "

Young said they have celebrated after past victories and nothing was ever said until Tuesday.

"So that was the thing I was a little disappointed about," Young said. "But it's all right, though."

Well, except for the comments made on ESPN.

"If ESPN or people on Twitter had said something the night it happened or even the next day.… I think they waited until they seen Kobe and then it went from there," Young said. "I think ESPN is a phony. Phony ESPN."

A 98-94 Lakers lead with 9.3 seconds left looked safe — until Hill fouled Favors on a layup with 2.2 seconds left. Favors made the free throw to slice the Lakers' lead to 98-97.

But Sacre made two free throws with 1.2 seconds to get Hill off the hook.

"It was a mistake by me," Hill said. "But Rob came in with the huge free throw and we got the win."

Follow Broderick Turner on Twitter @BA_Turner

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