HOUSTON — Chris Paul scored a playoff career-high 41 points with eight 3-pointers to finally reach the conference finals, helping the Houston Rockets eliminate the Utah Jazz 112-102 in Game 5 on Tuesday night.

It will be Houston’s second trip to the Western Conference finals in four years and the first for Paul. The point guard has been panned for failing to get past the second round in his nine previous trips to the postseason.

Paul, a nine-time All-Star in his first season with Houston after an offseason trade from the Los Angeles Clippers, also had 10 assists and seven rebounds. His previous career-best in the playoffs was 35 points, which he accomplished three times.

Star rookie Donovan Mitchell had 22 of his 24 points for Utah in the third quarter before leaving with about seven minutes left with an apparent left leg injury.

Houston returns to the conference finals for the first time since 2015. It’s the second straight season the Jazz lost in this round after being swept by Golden State last season.

The top-seeded Rockets led by eight points after a 3-pointer by Paul with about six minutes left. The Jazz scored the next seven points, highlighted by a 3-pointer from Royce O’Neale, before Paul made eight quick points to push Houston’s lead to 105-96 with about three minutes left.

Joe Ingles made a basket for Utah before Paul added another basket to make it 107-98. The crowd began chanting “CP3” repeatedly as Paul dribbled down the court on the next possession.

The Jazz were without Ricky Rubio and Dante Exum because of hamstring injuries. Rubio has missed the entire series with his injury, and Exum was injured in the third quarter of Game 5.

NOTES

CAVALIERS: A person familiar with the situation says the Cavaliers will not fine or suspend forward Rodney Hood for refusing to enter Game 4 against Toronto.

The Athletic first reported that Hood declined Coach Tyronn Lue’s request to replace LeBron James with 7:38 left and the Cavs leading by 30, angering his teammates and others in the organization. Hood spoke to team officials about the incident Tuesday and will not be disciplined.

TIMBERWOLVES: Assistant coach Rick Brunson abruptly resigned and the team said he had fallen short of meeting its “high standards of conduct” amid reports he had acted improperly toward women.

The Star Tribune, citing a source it did not identify, reported Brunson had been the subject of complaints of improper conduct toward women.

In 2014, Brunson was arrested in suburban Chicago and charged with sexually assaulting a massage therapist. He was acquitted of all counts in that case, saying he had an ongoing extramarital affair with the woman.

HORNETS: Owner Michael Jordan finalized a deal to hire San Antonio Spurs assistant coach James Borrego as Charlotte’s next head coach, according to people familiar with the situation.

Borrego, 40, has spent 15 years an NBA assistant coach, 10 of those with San Antonio under Gregg Popovich.

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