NBA Basketball

Jazz seek consecutive wins as they visit Hawks

The last time the Utah Jazz put together a winning streak, they also owned a winning record.

It was over a month ago when the Jazz won six straight to get two games over .500 but since then, the wins have been infrequent.

Utah gets another crack at winning consecutive games for the first time in over a month Monday night when it visits the Atlanta Hawks.

The Jazz (19-27) were 13-11 after a 116-69 home win over the Washington Wizards on Dec. 4. Since then, they are 6-16 and the slump has placed them 4 1/2 games out of the final playoff spot.

Utah has split its last six games but is one made 3-pointer away from a three-game winning streak. After getting a 120-105 win at Sacramento on Wednesday, the Jazz missed three open 3-pointers in the final minute of a 117-115 loss to the New York Knicks on Friday.

The Jazz followed it up by shooting 54.9 percent from the field in a 125-113 home win over the Los Angeles Clippers on Saturday. Utah shot at least 50 percent for the sixth time and scored at least 120 for the fifth time.

"The way to turn that around is to not look at stats like that," Jazz rookie guard Donovan Mitchell told reporters. "And then, as a team, we just have to stay positive. We can't look at any team lightly. We have to take things day-by-day. If we can do that, then we have a chance to be in great shape."

Now the Jazz attempt to get some positive momentum while spending most of the next few weeks on the road. Utah's 5-18 road record is the worst mark in the Western Conference and through Feb. 11, the Jazz will play eight of its next 10 outside of Salt Lake City.

Despite owning the league's third-worst road record, the Jazz produced road wins at Boston and Washington.

"We have to keep doing what we did against the Clippers," Jazz forward Derrick Favors said. "I think we've played a lot better in the last few games, so we just have to find a way to get that consistency."

Mitchell scored 23 points Saturday on a night when the Jazz set season bests for points in the first quarter (39) and first half (76). Utah led wire-to-wire on a night when Rodney Hood sat out with a lower leg contusion.

Hood is listed as questionable after scoring 18 points Friday. Joe Ingles tied a career high with 21 in place of Hood and would likely start again if Utah's second-leading scorer sits out.

Atlanta (13-32) owns the worst record in the Eastern Conference but is playing better of late with seven wins in the last 16 games. Before shooting 38 percent in a 113-97 home loss to Chicago Saturday, Atlanta rallied from 19 points down to beat New Orleans Wednesday and overcame a 14-point deficit to beat San Antonio last Monday.

Atlanta's attempts to win three straight were derailed by its second-worst showing from 3-point range. The Hawks are in the top 10 in 3-point shooting percentage at 36.7 percent but missed 37 of 48 attempts and were 4 of 32 from behind the arc in the first three quarters.

"The shot isn't falling, but you have to find another way to win the game," Atlanta point guard Dennis Schroder told reporters. "We didn't do it tonight. We have to keep moving on to the next game."

Schroder led the Hawks with 18 points to reach double figures for the 13th straight game. Atlanta trailed by as many as 25 and its veteran 3-point shooters Ersan Ilyasova and Marco Belinelli were a combined 0-for-12 from 3-point range.

Last season, Utah swept the season series for the first time since 2006-07 by shooting 52.8 percent in the two games and winning those games by a combined 52 points.

Updated January 22, 2018

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