LAKE BUENA VISTA, FLORIDA - JULY 30: Utah Jazz's Jordan Clarkson #00 heads to the basket as New Orleans Pelicans' E'Twaun Moore #55 and Josh Hart defend during the second half of an NBA basketball game on July 30, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida.
POOL / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / GETTY IMAGES VIA AFP
Jazz turn back Pelicans in NBA restart opener
Luisa Morales (Philstar.com) - July 31, 2020 - 9:25am

MANILA, Philippines — The Utah Jazz overcame a double-digit deficit against the New Orleans Pelicans for a come-from-behind 106-104 win in the opening game of the NBA season restart in Orlando, Florida on Thursday (Friday, Manila time).

Rudy Gobert sunk clutch free throws with seven seconds left in regulation to seal the win for Utah in their first game back.

Led by Donovan Mitchell, the Jazz battled back after trailing for most of the game to start their eight seeding matchups with a victory.

Carelessness with the ball and lax defense inside doomed the Jazz in the first half, with the Pelicans leading by as much as 16.

But with a good second half and Mitchell and Gobert's clutch play in the final minute, the Jazz were able to claw back into the match and notch the first win of the restarted season.

Mitchell sank a layup with about four minutes left in the final quarter to give the Jazz the lead, 98-97 which swung the momentum their way enough to take the game.

While the Pelicans were able to keep the game close and tight with clutch points of their own, a botched 3-point attempt from Brandon Ingram in the last possession gave the victory to the Jazz.

Mitchell and Gobert were the first two players to test positive for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

Gobert tacked on the first and last baskets of the opening game of the NBA restart.

Filipino-American Jordan Clarkson top-scored for Jazz with 23 points.

The Jazz improve their standing to 42-23 while the Pelicans drop to 28-37.

The match is the first of a double-header on opening day, with the Los Angeles Lakers and the Los Angeles Clippers clashing in the second game.

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