NBA playoffs: Back from quarantine, Mike Conley helps Jazz rout Nuggets
Mike Conley made a career playoff-high seven three-pointers and scored 27 points in his return from quarantine, helping the Utah Jazz rout the Denver Nuggets 124-87 on Friday for a 2-1 lead in the Western Conference first-round series.
The 37-point loss tied the third worst in Denver’s playoff history. The record is 44 against the Lakers on May 22, 1985.
“I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: He’s a terrific player,” Jazz coach Quin Snyder said. “I know how glad our guys were to see him back.”
Conley left the NBA bubble for the birth of his son and returned Monday night. He went through a four-day separation that ended Friday.
While in isolation, Conley said he got about 30 minutes of outside activity a day to work on his game.
There wasn’t a hint of rust as he made his series debut. He was seven for eight from three-point range and had four assists.
“Being on that court was all I was thinking about other than my family,” Conley said. “Thankful to be back and looking forward to the rest of the series.”
Rudy Gobert had a career playoff-high 24 points courtesy of numerous easy dunks and layups. He also had 14 rebounds.
Donovan Mitchell was held “in check” — as much as he can be — with 20 points. He had a Jazz playoff-record 57 in Game 1 and 30 in Game 2.
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It’s the second straight lopsided win for the Jazz in the series after dropping Game 1 in overtime.
Nikola Jokic led Denver with 15 points. The Nuggets had 17 turnovers and shot 37.5% from the field.
Celtics 102, 76ers 94: Kemba Walker scored 24 points, and Boston closed with a 10-0 run to beat Philadelphia for a 3-0 lead in the Eastern Conference first-round series.
Jaylen Brown scored 21 points and Jason Tatum added 15 for the Celtics.
Joel Embiid had 30 points and 13 rebounds to lead the 76ers. They shot 29.5% from the field.
Raptors 117, Nets 92: Pascal Siakam scored 26 points, and Toronto defeated Brooklyn to take the first 3-0 lead in a playoff series in franchise history.
The defending champions now can eliminate the patchwork Nets on Sunday in the Eastern Conference first-round series.
Fred VanVleet scored 22 points, shooting six for 10 from three-point range. Reserve Serge Ibaka added 20 points and grabbed 13 rebounds. Tyler Johnson led the Nets with 23 points. Caris LeVert scored 15.
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