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SALT LAKE CITY — It was harder than it probably should have been, but the Utah Jazz bounced back Saturday night from their Friday loss to the Portland Trail Blazers, beating the lowly Dallas Mavericks 97-90 at Vivint Arena.

Turning point: After a great start that saw them lead by as many as 15 in the first quarter, the Jazz struggled for much of the rest of the night. With the game tied at 87 with 4:20 left, the Jazz scored the game’s next six points, but didn’t put it away until the final seconds as Jae Crowder and Donovan Mitchell made two free throws apiece.

The hero: Mitchell led all scorers with 25 points and added six rebounds, five assists and two steals.

3 keys:

• Although Utah struggled shooting (40 percent from the field and 28 percent from behind the 3-point line), it managed to rack up 26 assists compared to 19 for the Mavericks. Joe Ingles led the Jazz with eight dimes.

• Utah scored 15 fast break points while Dallas had just three.

• The Jazz controlled the paint, scoring 46 points while the Mavericks finished with 30.

Jazz almanac: 31-29, Won 1

Playoff picture: The Jazz are in 10th place in the Western Conference, moving back to within a game of the ninth-place LA Clippers and two games behind the eighth-place New Orleans Pelicans, neither of whom played Saturday.

Next 3:

Monday, Feb. 26 vs. Houston (45-13), 7 p.m. MT

Friday, March 2 vs. Minnesota (37-26), 8:30 p.m. MT

Saturday, March 3 at Sacramento (18-40), 8 p.m. MT

Full Story from the Deseret News...

SALT LAKE CITY — There was a lot going on at Vivint Arena on Friday night.

The Utah Jazz were returning from NBA All-Star break.

It was International Night.

Former Jazz star Darrell Griffith was in attendance to present rookie Donovan Mitchell with his slam dunk contest trophy ahead of the tipoff.

Ricky Rubio returned to the starting lineup from a three-game absence with left hip soreness.

Then to top things off, Utah was riding a league-best 11-game win streak with all eyes on them to see how they would come out of the break.

Despite all the excitement and energy in the building, the Jazz’s hot streak ended after a 100-81 loss to the Portland Trail Blazers. Utah turned the ball over 20 times, allowing 22 points off the mishaps.

“We weren’t as sharp as we’ve been before and those guys played good, that’s a very good team and they did a great job tonight,” said Jazz center Rudy Gobert, who ended with 15 points, nine rebounds, four blocks and two steals.

During the break, the Jazz were able to practice a couple times, but they hadn’t played in a game since Feb. 14. That lack of activity was certainly apparent as the Jazz allowed 14 second-chance points and fell behind by as many as 19.

“I mean, you’re off for like a week so you’re going to come back kind of rusty by not practicing and not being around the team to sharpen things up,” said Jazz forward Derrick Favors, who contributed four points and nine rebounds. “So, I think that’s what happened tonight. Luckily, we got that out the way, we’ve got another game tomorrow so we’ve just got to come back better.”

In Rubio’s return, he put up four points with four rebounds but turned the ball over three times in 19 minutes. Mitchell led the squad with 21 points on 8-for-20 shooting for his 28th game of 20-plus points this season and new addition Jae Crowder posted 11 points.

Joe Ingles would end with 12 points with...

SALT LAKE CITY — Los Angeles was the host of 67th NBA All-Star Game last weekend.

Could Salt Lake City be in the picture next? Fans will have to wait and see.

After months of planning, the Utah Jazz have submitted a formal bid to the league to host an All-Star Game in 2022 or 2023.

The Jazz have partnered with the state of Utah, Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah Sports Commission, Visit Salt Lake and the Utah Office of Tourism to strengthen the case of Vivint Arena as a proposed site.

“We are very excited and well-prepared to bring back the NBA All-Star Game to Vivint Smart Home Arena,” said Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biskupski. “We are a vibrant, diverse and culturally rich community that knows how to celebrate the experience of sport. Our 2002 Olympic Winter Games remain the standard against which all other Olympic Winter Games are measured.”

Utah last hosted an NBA All-Star Weekend on Feb. 21, 1993, where hometown heroes John Stockton and Karl Malone shared co-MVP honors. Returning in 2023 would mark the 30th anniversary of that star-studded showcase.

The Salt Palace, Huntsman Center and The Complex entertainment venue are other venues that could be used for All-Star festivities, if Utah is selected.

“The 1993 NBA All-Star Game was memorable for many reasons. Our new arena was just two years old, and we were so proud to welcome the NBA family into our new home,” said Greg Miller, NBA Board of Governors member. “It is with great excitement and anticipation that we now invite the NBA to return this celebration of our sport back to Salt Lake City for a game elevated.”

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Even though Utah Jazz guard Ricky Rubio missed the last three games leading up to the All-Star break, it was assumed he’d be back in action this week. Unfortunately, that may not be the case. Although Ricky Rubio got off to somewhat of a slow start in a Utah Jazz uniform, he turned it on […]

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