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Rudy Gobert Addresses Utah's Defensive Implosion On Friday Night

A closeup of Rudy Gobert during a game.

SALT LAKE CITY, UT - APRIL 27: Rudy Gobert #27 of the Utah Jazz reacts to his technical foul in the first half during Game Six of Round One of the 2018 NBA Playoffs against the Oklahoma City Thunder at Vivint Smart Home Arena on April 27, 2018 in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Photo by Gene Sweeney Jr./Getty Images)

The Utah Jazz' fourth straight loss to blow their 2-0 lead over the Clippers featured a monumental defensive collapse -- allowing the Los Angeles squad to drop 131 points.

A significant portion of this allowed offense can be attributed to three-time defensive player of the year Rudy Gobert. Struggling to adjust to the Clippers' small-ball lineups, the 7-foot-1 center looked lost guarding on the perimeter.

Gobert addressed the defensive breakdown after the game.

"The problem is if I don't come and help, we give up layups," he said, per Jazz insider Eric Walden. "The gameplan was for us to let Terance Mann shoot rather than letting Reggie Jackson or PG get layups. We tried to adjust with full rotations. They played perfectly on almost every possession."

Gobert and the Jazz stuck to this strategy for the entire matchup -- seemingly to their detriment. With Utah gambling on his ability to hit outside shots, second-year Clipper Terance Mann played the game of his life. The young forward dropped a career-high 39 points, 30 of which were on Gobert as the primary defender. Scoring 20 points in the third quarter alone, Mann heavily contributed to LA's 17-0 onslaught to start the second half and their 51.3% shooting from behind the arc. Mann encapsulated the night with his second posterizing dunk over Gobert, throwing down a nasty put-back jam in the first quarter.

After logging the best regular-season record in the league (52-20), the Jazz have now been eliminated from the playoffs after holding a two-game series lead for the second year in a row.