Ingram scores 49, Pelicans end Jazz’s 10-game winning streak

Sports

New Orleans Pelicans forward Brandon Ingram drives to the basket between Utah Jazz forward Bojan Bogdanovic (44) and guard Donovan Mitchell during the first half of an NBA basketball game in New Orleans, Thursday, Jan. 16, 2020. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

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NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The New Orleans Pelicans wildly celebrated Brandon Ingram’s off-balance jumper in the final seconds of regulation, believing it had won the game.

Turns out it didn’t.

Fans were angry with an unusual foul call that allowed Utah to force overtime with .2 seconds left, but the way the Pelicans responded sent them home happy.

Ingram scored five of his career-high 49 points in the extra period, and the Pelicans stopped the Jazz’s 10-game win streak with a 138-132 victory Thursday night.

“To come back after that, my teammates were still locked in and we wanted it more than the other team tonight,” said Ingram, who also had three assists in OT. “We stepped up in all areas and we were able to pull it out.”

Teammates playfully doused Ingram with water in the locker room after the latest of a slew of prolific performances this season.

“The first person that threw something, I told him he’s got to pay for my next hairdo,” a grinning Ingram said.

The 22-year-old Ingram has scored at least 30 points nine times this season — three times against Utah — and his 25.8 points per game leads the club that he joined this offseason when he was included in a trade that sent Anthony Davis to the Los Angeles Lakers.

“He’s come into his own. It’s Brandon Ingram time now,” said guard Lonzo Ball, who also was part of the Davis trade. “Since I’ve known him, he’s been a confident person. But this whole year, he’s been on a whole other level. Obviously, he’s our go-to guy on this team and we trust him.”

Utah led 132-127 on Bojan Bogdanovic’s 3 with 2:28 remaining, but went scoreless the rest of the way. The Pelicans scored 11 straight on layups by Derrick Favors and E’Twaun Moore and seven free throws.

Favors finished with 21 points, 11 rebounds and three blocks against his former team. Moore had 16 points for New Orleans, which has won 10 of 14 and has two games to play before the NBA’s top overall draft choice, Zion Williamson, is slated to make his Pelicans debut on Wednesday night.

Fellow 2019 first-round picks Nickeil Alexander-Walker and Jaxson Hayes each played prominent roles in New Orleans’ victory. Alexander-Walker had 12 points, and Hayes collected nine points, five rebounds and a blocked shot.

The Pelicans thought they were headed for a win on Ingram’s 16-foot pull-up from the left side in the final seconds of regulation. But Hayes was called for holding center Rudy Gobert as Utah attempted a desperation tip-in on the inbound pass.

The call, which was upheld after a video review, gave Gobert a chance to win it by making both foul shots. But with the crowd heartily booing the officials, Gobert missed the first free throw before hitting the pressure-packed second to tie it at 122.

“It was a great game,” Gobert said. “Both teams played hard. Both teams tried to get a win. It came down to the last few plays.”

Utah star Donovan Mitchell tied his career high with 46 points before missing several shots in the final minutes of overtime. Bogdanovic scored 26, and Gobert finished with 17 points, 14 rebounds and three blocks.

TIP-INS

Jazz: Jordan Clarkson scored 15 points and Joe Ingles had 12. … Utah lost for the first time in seven games on the road, dropping to 13-10 away from home. … Gobert fouled out with 1:19 left in OT. … Utah combined for 15 3s on 39 attempts.

Pelicans: Frank Jackson scored 10 points and had a steal. … JJ Redick missed his third straight game with a strained left hamstring. … Guard Jrue Holiday missed his sixth consecutive game with a bruised left elbow. … Nicolo Melli started for the fifth time this season and had seven points and four rebounds in 26 minutes. … Favors has 10 double-doubles this season — seven in his last 11 games.

WIRE-TO-WIRE TENSION

The game was tight throughout. There were 23 lead changes and 23 ties. The largest lead by either team was nine after Favors’ block of Gobert led to a transition layup by Ingram to make it 56-47.

Mitchell cut it to 56-49 at halftime when he took a pass from Ingles and in one motion flipped in a running floater off the glass as time expired.

Mitchell hit three 3s in the last four minutes of regulation to put Utah on the brink of victory, but missed a mid-range pull-up inside the final 10 seconds. The Pelicans rebounded and called timeout with 6.3 seconds left to set up the tense final sequence of regulation.

OFFICIAL EXPLANATION

Official Mark Ayotte spoke to a pool reporter about the foul called on Hayes at the end of regulation, as well as the sixth foul of the game called against Gobert during Ingram’s drive toward the hoop in overtime.

Ayotte said video replay at the end of regulation confirmed Hayes was holding Gobert after the inbound pass “clearly had been released.”

Utah challenged the call when Gobert fouled out, but Ayotte said, “We did not see clear and conclusive evidence to overturn the play.”

UP NEXT

Jazz: Host Sacramento on Saturday night.

Pelicans: Host the Los Angeles Clippers on Saturday night.

___

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