Gordon Hayward’s return to Utah may have come with enough boos to power all of Salt Lake City, but not with the victory the Celtics could have used, as the Green dropped their third game in their last four outings, this time by a 123-109 final to a Jazz.
The Celtics came out of the gate flying — including Hayward — outscoring the Jazz 10-2 out of the gate, but were outscored 25-15 to close out the first quarter, and saw the game begin to slip out of their reach late in the second quarter.
Coupling that sluggish second-quarter finish with some misses out of the gate to begin the second half, and with Jazz incapable of missing a shot, the Celtics saw their deficit climb to a game-high 20 points midway through the third quarter.
On the Jazz side, Utah shooters seemed downright incapable of missing their shots, and finished the night with makes on 43 of their 77 field goal attempts (a 55.8 field goal percentage). Joe Ingles was especially devastating for the Jazz, converting on 10-of-14 shots for a career-high 27 points. Rudy Gobert was his usual nightmare on the glass, too, with a game-high 15 rebounds.
And booed throughout the night, it was another night where it felt as if Hayward could have done more for the Celtics (especially with Kyrie Irving out of action tonight due to personal reasons), as he finished with just 13 points in 25 minutes.
The loss also marked the sixth straight game in which the Celtics surrendered at least 100 points.
The Celtics will conclude what has been a disastrous road trip Sunday night in Portland.