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Lu Dort has career night as Thunder fall to Jazz

Thunder defensive stopper Lu Dort had one of the best offensive nights of his career, but it wasn't enough as they fell to the Jazz for their seventh-straight loss
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Lu Dort got off to a hot start Tuesday night against the Jazz, scoring 18 points in the first quarter. A career-high for the young guard in any quarter, he outscored Utah single-handedly until the 1:17 mark in the first quarter. 

Up by as many as 17-points in the first quarter, the lead didn't last long for Oklahoma City. By halftime, the Jazz had taken a two-point lead and never looked back, ultimately winning 106-96. This marked the 25th home win of the season for Utah, the most of any team in the NBA.

Dort ultimately finished with a career-high 42 points to go along with seven made 3-pointers, the most ever in his career. 

"I've just been working on my game a lot," said Dort after the game. "To prove and show that I've been improving felt good tonight."

Moses Brown had an efficient night, producing 12 points and 15 rebounds in 26 minutes. Additionally, Ty Jerome anchored the bench with 14 points, including four threes. Donovan Mitchell and Bojan Bogdanovic led the way for Utah with a combined 55 points while Rudy Gobert produced 13 points and 14 rebounds.


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When it came down to it, the Jazz were just the more talented team. While the Thunder shot better from beyond the arc, Utah had 11 more assists than Oklahoma City, as well as nine more blocks. Although it ended up only being a 10-point win for the Jazz, it was never particularly close after halftime.

After committing 22 turnovers on Saturday against the Philadelphia 76ers, the Thunder only had 12 on Tuesday in Utah. As a team, Oklahoma City took a step forward against the Jazz, but were up against a better team from top to bottom. 

"We ran through the finish line tonight," Thunder head coach Mark Daigneault said after the game. "I was pleased with how we played."

Dort said playing aggressive from the jump was something OKC worked on in practice on Monday. 

"That's one of the things we worked on yesterday in practice and you know we were just ready tonight being aggressive," Dort said. 

The career night came for Dort in just his second game back from clearing concussion protocol, which sidelined the budding Thunder star for almost three weeks. 

"It starts with my teammates the coaching staff just letting me, just giving me the confidence even though sometimes I make mistakes to keep pushing me," he said. "I'm a pretty confident guy too also.

"I don't tend to put my head down, I tend to put my head up even though I make mistakes and just try and get better."

Now on a seven-game losing streak, the Thunder will head back to Oklahoma City for a one-game home stand against the Golden State Warriors tomorrow night before hitting the road again.

On the second night of a back-to-back, the Thunder will look to carry the positives over and tweak the handful of issues they had against the Jazz.