As Gordon Hayward was going, so were the rest of his Utah Jazz teammates in a blowout Tuesday night.
Hayward led all players with 30 points, and did so quite efficiently on 12-of-20 shooting and 4-of-6 from beyond the arc. With G-Time clicking, the Jazz shot 53.4 percent from the floor to dominate the Portland Trail Blazers 106-87.
“The way they guarded me tonight, I was able to get some looks early,” Hayward said, “with the big being back and so there was a lot of space to operate. That got me going early. My teammates did a great job of setting me up. Rudy did a great job of screening for me. Their bigs played back and that gave me a lot of space to operate. It got me going, and I got open looks all night. I got some layups, but it was really my teammates set me up.”
Six Jazzmen finished in double figures. Rudy Gobert turned in a 20-point, 11-rebound double-double, Dante Exum added 10 points, and Joe Johnson, Jeff Withey and Shelvin Mack all hit double figures coming off the bench.
“Rudy did a good job screening them and freeing me, then I could attack the big downhill and kind of have whatever I wanted,” Gordon said. “Once you see a couple shots go in, too, that definitely makes you feel better.”
G-Time got off to a great start, scoring 12 points in the opening quarter, including five in the last 16 seconds.
“It’s great to have Gordon playing that way,” Gobert said. “We need that from him. He was making shots, he was making plays for us.”
Hayward scored 14 points in the second half, with eight coming in the third quarter and six in the fourth. Once No. 20 burned the Portland defense, it opened the entire floor for the Utah attack.
“His man is kind of reluctant to leave him a little bit because they don’t want him to get the lob,” Johnson said of Gordon. “So all of us, we’re able to get into the paint and make plays and get easy layups.”
The Jazz were in control of the game the entire night, and cruised to a 19-point victory. Next up, Utah hosts the Minnesota Timberwolves on Friday night.