LOS ANGELES (AP) — Donovan Mitchell scored 24 points, Rudy Gobert had 23 points and 20 rebounds, and the Utah Jazz rolled past the short-handed Los Angeles Clippers 114-96 on Wednesday night for their ninth consecutive victory.

Serge Ibaka #9 of the LA Clippers grabs the rebound ahead of Rudy Gobert #27 of the Utah Jazz at Staples Center on Feb. 17 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Meg Oliphant/Getty Images)

Jordan Clarkson scored 18 points for the NBA-leading Jazz, who improved to 24-5 with their 20th win in 21 games. After three tight quarters, Utah broke it open in the fourth to win this matchup of Western Conference powerhouses — although it wasn’t a proper showdown with the Clippers missing injured superstars Kawhi Leonard and Paul George.

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The Jazz beat the Clippers for the ninth time in the teams’ last 12 matchups despite a rough first half that didn’t resemble Utah’s impressive recent play. Utah opened up a tight game with a 14-2 run spanning the third and fourth quarters, followed by a 16-3 run to put it away.

Lou Williams scored 16 points and Reggie Jackson added 15 for the Clippers, whose four-game winning streak ended.

The Clippers were profoundly disadvantaged in this heavyweight matchup: Leonard missed his third straight game with a bruised leg, and George missed his seventh straight with an injured toe. Nicolas Batum also sat out with a concussion, leaving LA without three regular starters.

The Clips fell to 3-2 this season when playing without both Leonard and George.

The Jazz played without Mike Conley, who had hamstring tightness.

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The Clippers’ supporting cast still made Utah uncomfortable on offense throughout the first half, taking a 51-46 lead while soundly outrebounding Utah, forcing poor shots and bothering its usually fluid ball movement.


Jazz: Conley has missed six straight games. … Clarkson, the former Lakers guard, scored 11 points in the second half. He dropped 40 on the 76ers on Monday.

Clippers: Batum missed his second straight game after taking a shot to the head last week. … Patrick Beverley returned after missing Monday’s win over Miami to rest on the second date of a back-to-back set.


The teams meet again Friday at Staples Center.

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