PHOENIX SUNS

Ricky Rubio leads Suns over Jazz in his return to Utah

Feb 24, 2020, 10:13 PM

Phoenix Suns guard Ricky Rubio (11) drives against Utah Jazz forward Bojan Bogdanovic (44) in the s...

Phoenix Suns guard Ricky Rubio (11) drives against Utah Jazz forward Bojan Bogdanovic (44) in the second half during an NBA basketball game Monday, Feb. 24, 2020, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

(AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Ricky Rubio had 22 points, 11 assists and seven steals to lead the Phoenix Suns to a 131-111 victory over the reeling Utah Jazz on Monday night.

In his first game back in Salt Lake City after playing for the Jazz for two seasons, Rubio led an offense that shot 56% and seemed a step ahead of the Jazz all night.

Devin Booker had 24 points and 10 assists while Deandre Ayton added 16 points for the Suns.

Donovan Mitchell scored 38 points and Bojan Bogdanovic added 16 for Utah. The Jazz made a season-high 37 free throws — on 43 attempts — but looked disjointed while committing 19 turnovers.

The Suns made three 3-pointers in a row to get some breathing room, and then Jevon Carter made a layup and Kelly Oubre dunked to take a 99-88 lead into the fourth quarter.

Oubre dunked over Gobert early in the fourth quarter and let him know all about it, drawing a technical foul.

Rubio made an off-balance 3-pointer from the corner that brought audible gasps from the Utah crowd. The knock on Rubio in Utah was that he wasn’t enough of a perimeter threat to keep defenses from sagging.

The Suns made their first five shots and set the tone early that if the Jazz weren’t going to stop their drives, they were headed for a big night. The Suns outscored the Jazz in the paint 66-42.

Rubio, who also had six rebounds, had 13 points in the first half as the Suns shot 59.5 percent and matched the Jazz at 62-62 at the break.

Known for their defense over the past few years, the Jazz suddenly can’t stop anyone as they dropped their third straight home game for the first time since early last season.

TIP-INS

Suns: Ayton got a technical foul 8:00 before halftime. … Phoenix shot 65 percent in the opening quarter and still trailed 35-27. … The Suns had 33 assists.

UP NEXT

Suns: Host the Los Angeles Clippers on Wednesday night to open a six-game homestand.

Phoenix Suns

Bol Bol looks on during a Phoenix Suns game...

Arizona Sports

Report: Bol Bol off South Sudan roster for Paris Olympics due to personal reasons

Phoenix Suns big man Bol Bol is reportedly off South Sudan's Olympic roster due to personal reasons, per ESPN's Leonard Solms.

2 hours ago

Kevin Durant smiles during a Team USA exhibition...

Arizona Sports

Kevin Durant back practicing for Team USA in London

Phoenix Suns forward Kevin Durant is reportedly expected to return to Team USA practice in London after dealing with a strained calf.

5 hours ago

Valley Suns G League team logo...

Damon Allred

John Little to be named head coach of Suns’ G League affiliate, per report

The Suns will hire John Little to be the head coach of their G League affiliate, Valley Suns, HoopsHype's Michael Scotto reported Thursday.

17 hours ago

...

Arizona Sports Video

Video: Can Phoenix Suns fans trust any of the national reporting surrounding Kevin Durant?

Suns owner Mat Ishbia and superstar Kevin Durant have both recently been vocal in the message that the forward is happy in Phoenix. Wolf & Luke question how much of the media reporting can be trusted when it comes to trade rumors surrounding Durant.

22 hours ago

Phoenix Suns player Devin Booker, Phoenix Suns head coach Mike Budenholzer and owner Mat Ishbia att...

Arizona Sports

Ishbia: Budenholzer gives Suns needed ‘great leader’ as head coach

The Phoenix Suns have had a few changes in the offseason, none bigger than firing Frank Vogel and replacing him with Mike Budenholzer.

22 hours ago

...

Arizona Sports Video

Video: Bickley Blast: Do Phoenix Suns fans have the patience to see Mat Ishbia’s 3-year plan through?

Phoenix Suns owner Mat Ishbia joined Burns & Gambo to explain his three-year plan for the organization on Wednesday. Dan Bickley ponders if fans have enough patience to see the entire plan all the way through.

1 day ago

Ricky Rubio leads Suns over Jazz in his return to Utah