Joe Ingles likely wasn’t the person the Los Angles Lakers figured would take the shot in the closing seconds to beat them.
The 29-year-old forward is the real example of a journeyman, playing in three distinct nations – Australia, Spain, and Israel before entering the United States.
However, the ball discovered its path to Ingles all by itself past the 3-point line with 21.6 seconds left Tuesday and he took the shot to lead the Utah Jazz to a 102-100 win, ending a three-game losing streak.
After the match, Ingles said “Joe (Johnson) set a great screen. Obviously, the play wasn’t set up for me. I was wide open and got a good look.”
Ingles is only Utah’s ninth-leading scorer (6.5 points per game). However, he leads the NBA in the 3-point sector, and his goal percentage is (.477).
Gordon Hayward was the top scorer for Jazz with 31 points and nine rebounds. Ingles finished with 13 points, and Rudy Gobert made 12 points and 11 rebounds.
The Lakers had a last chance to turnaround game in the final seconds. Coach Luke Walton called a play for D’Angelo Russell to hit Lou Williams off a screen. However, Utah coach Quin Snyder amazed the Lakers by putting the 6-foot-10 Ingles on the 6-1 Williams.
Ingles had him smothered, and Russell rushed a 3-point attempt that was an airball.
Later Coach Walton said, “D’Angelo ended up taking a tough shot. He’s trying to run the play the coach called. I give him respect for that. That last possession is on me.” For the Lakers, Julius Randle made 25 points and 12 rebounds.Moreover, Lakers have lost 13 of their last 15 games. Williams added 22 points off the bench, including nine in the fourth quarter.
Snyder said, “When we defend down the stretch and get stops, that’s when we win. It happened that we hit a couple of shots too, but that’s been the pattern with this group.”