SALT LAKE CITY – Gordon Hayward was a student at Utah. He was bitten every time he touched the ball, and his Boston Celtics left the city with a loss.
Joe Ingles completed his career with 27 points and added seven assists to help Jazz beat Celtic 123-115 on Friday night at Hayward's return to Salt Lake City.
Hayward had 13 points and seven assists in 25 minutes during his first play back in Utah because he left Jazz as a free agent to sign with the Celtics after the 2016-17 season. In the last season he broke his left ankle in Boston's opener.
The star has spent the first seven NBA seasons with Jazz after compiling the ninth overall set in 2010. He averaged 15.7 points, 4.2 rebounds, and 3.4 assists for Utah, but made the enemy reaction of Jazz fans.
"I was expecting something," Hayward said. "They enjoyed me leaving, so it's part of the game."
Boston cut the deficit by 20 points to four in the fourth quarter. They played without wounding Kyrie Irving, the Celtics closed four times on more occasions late, at the final time on the 3-pointer by Marcus Smart, who made 111-107 with 2:19 on the left.
Rudy Gobert quickly responded with a layup that pushed the lead back to six. Jayson Tatum followed a missing back-to-back stowage that could reduce the deficit again, and Boston never approached.
Jae Crowder eventually hit the comeback door with corner 3, which gave Utadu 117-109 lead with 47.7 seconds left.
Utah coach Quin Snyder thought his team turned into a corner by hanging firmly across the Celtics.
"Our team was unable to cope with the successes during the games," Snyder said. "We've lost some attention when we hit the shots, the teams will come back to you, but I can not help them."
Donovan Mitchell gained 21 points for Utah. Crowder was 20 and Gobert finished 17 points and 15 rebounds. Jazz won his second straight home game and second overall.
"We all picked it up, defended our energy, picked attention," Mitchell said. "We've had great stories, but we just did not get into the game, I think we've done it for the last few games."
Terry Rozier reached 22 points, which was his first start in Irving and Jayson Tatum added 21 points for the Celtics.
Boston lost after the third victory in four matches after allowing Utah to shoot the season – a high 56 percent of the field.
"As well as we were defensively in the first nine matches, I do not think we have been so good in the last three," said Coach Brad Stevens. "I thought we did indeed work on the initial rides in isolation, but in a number of cases we did not cover up. Our defensive measures, we have to really solve it."
Jazz started pulling away when he scored 3 points in each of his last four properties in the second quarter. Ingles participated in the first three long baskets, picking up 20 points for him.
Utah opened a 17-6 race in the third quarter. Mitchell ignited the leak by releasing three free throws and driving for layup on back-to-back property. Derrick Favors held it with shirts that gave Jazz a two-fold lead and ended with two free throws that led Utah forward 75-57 just four minutes into the quarter.
"We did not pay attention to detail defensively," Rozier said. "We did not have a presence there, so they played freely."
Jazz built their lead on 83-63 on the Crowder layup before Boston gathered in the fourth quarter.
The Celtics placed on four direct estates, culminating in Tatum's layout and firing 15-4. Rozier pulled 3 to finish the run and fired Utah's lead to 100-96.
"I think I know it." Crowder questioned whether his 20-point performance was motivated by the desire to show the Celtics that they had made a mistake when trading with Cleveland before the season 2017-18.
Celtics: Intelligent Set of 10 Assists, High Career Season. Smart also scored 13 points for the first doubles of the season. … Boston had 28 points out of 17 Utah turnovers. Celtics in the third quarter managed to increase seasonally by 35 points.
Jazz: Ingles made five 3s, moved him in front of Deron Williams (511) to Utah's career list. Ingles has 512 3-pointers with Jazz. … Utah finished with 45-28 advantage on the boards. … Jazz scored 50 points in color.
Celtics: On Sunday in Portland.
Jazz: Monday in Memphis
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