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Jordan Clarkson Out for Jazz vs. Trail Blazers with Ankle Injury

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistApril 9, 2021

SALT LAKE CITY, UT - DECEMBER 26: Jordan Clarkson #00 of the Utah Jazz looks on during a game against the Portland Trail Blazers on December 26, 2019 at vivint.SmartHome Arena in Salt Lake City, Utah. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Melissa Majchrzak/NBAE via Getty Images)
Melissa Majchrzak/Getty Images

Utah Jazz guard Jordan Clarkson will miss the team's Thursday night game against the Portland Trail Blazers because of a right ankle sprain

The 28-year-old played 25 minutes during Wednesday's overtime loss to the Phoenix Suns

This is a difficult setback for Clarkson, who has been largely durable for much of his career. While he appeared in only 59 contests in 2014-15, he still managed to earn first-team All-Rookie honors while on the Los Angeles Lakers.

Clarkson averaged a then-career-best 16.8 points to go with 3.3 rebounds and 2.4 assists per game in 2018-19 for the Cleveland Cavaliers and finished the 2019-20 campaign with 15.2 points and 2.6 rebounds per night for Cleveland and Utah, which acquired him via trade.

He is an important part of the Jazz's backcourt rotation because he is versatile enough to handle point guard duties but also play on the wing as someone who can shoot three-pointers and penetrate the lane. His presence as a spark off the bench is a major reason Utah is among the league's best teams.

He helped lead the club to the playoffs last season and has responded with 17.2 points and 3.9 rebounds through 51 games in 2020-21.

Look for the Jazz to turn to a combination of backcourt options until he returns.

Mike Conley and Donovan Mitchell can both handle the ball, while Bojan Bogdanovic, Joe Ingles and Royce O'Neale provide depth on the wing.

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