Rudy Gobert scored 23 points and grabbed 16 rebounds, Donovan Mitchell added 22 points and the Utah Jazz remained undefeated with a 122-110 win over the Denver Nuggets on Tuesday night in Salt Lake City.
The Nuggets only got 15 minutes from reigning league MVP Nikola Jokic, who left the game late in the first half with a right knee contusion after bumping knees with Gobert. Jokic didn’t return after compiling 24 points, six rebounds and six assists in the short stint.
The Jazz moved to 3-0 and are just one of three teams — along with 4-0 Chicago and 4-0 Golden State — that have yet to lose in the 2021-22 season.
Even without its star for most of the game, Denver kept it close, going into halftime down by just two points and then taking an 88-85 lead late in the third quarter. Will Barton helped the Nuggets outscore the Jazz 26-25 in that period with 16 points.
Barton finished with 21 points, Aaron Gordon contributed 20 and Monte Morris chipped in with 19 as Denver fell for the second consecutive night after starting the season 2-0.
After three solid quarters of play, Denver, which traveled to Utah late Monday night following a 99-87 home defeat to the Cleveland Cavaliers, faded at the tail end of a back-to-back set.
Michael Porter Jr. gave Denver a 93-91 lead early in the fourth quarter with a 3-pointer, but the Jazz turned their intensity up a notch during an 11-2 run. That put Utah up 102-95 and pushed the momentum in the home team’s direction for the rest of the game.
The Nuggets were held to 20 points in the fourth quarter.
Utah spread around the offense while shooting 51.8 percent from the field overall. Sixth Man of the Year Jordan Clarkson fired in 19 points off the bench, and starters Bojan Bogdanovic and Mike Conley Jr. each scored 15 as seven Jazz players reached double digits.