Even with a 2-0 lead, Utah knows it still has plenty to prove

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It is easy to forget — and perhaps healthier — that two teams blew 3-games-to-1 series leads against the Denver Nuggets in last season’s Western Conference playoffs.

But fate has matched those teams — the Utah Jazz and LA Clippers — against each other in the second round of this year’s playoffs, a sort of group session on how to bounce back from a postseason meltdown. And there are plenty of notes to compare.

All season, both teams have had to make their peace with the outside world’s difficulty in believing in them, no matter how well they play or what they accomplish.

Take the Jazz, who have just held serve at home with two impressive wins over the Clippers, behind two incandescent performances from star Donovan Mitchell — who finished with 37 points in Thursday night’s 117-111 win in front of 18,306 fans at Vivint Arena in Salt Lake City, Utah.

They also had the best record in the NBA this year, the Defensive Player of the Year in Rudy Gobert and the Sixth Man of the Year in Jordan Clarkson.

But even the Jazz players will tell you they haven’t proved or done anything yet.

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