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Nuggets

Nuggets stun Clippers, advance to West finals

For the past 26 years the biggest win in Nuggets’ franchise history was when Denver knocked off the Seattle SuperSonics in the first round of the 1994 NBA playoffs and Dikembe Mutombo was seen on the floor clutching the ball over his head afterward. It’s safe to say there’s a new No. 1 in town after Denver shocked the Clippers and the basketball world with a 104-89 win Tuesday night.

Denver gets a couple days off before the start of the Western Conference Finals on Friday (7 p.m., TNT) vs. the top-seeded L.A. Lakers.

As for Tuesday, the Nuggets set numerous records with the win, here’s a look at some of them:

  • Denver became the first team ever to come back from 3-1 deficits twice in the same postseason.
  • Became the first team ever to rally from double-digit deficits in three straight games when facing elimination.
  • Tied the record for most wins when facing elimination in one postseason with six. The team they tied? The 1994 Nuggets.
  • Jamal Murray became the first player in history to score 40 points or more in three elimination games in the same postseason after scoring 40 on Tuesday.
  • Nikola Jokić became the first player to record a triple-double in the first three quarters of a Game 7. Jokić finished with 16 points, 22 rebounds and 13 assists.
    He’s also now one of just three players to have multiple Game 7 triple doubles, joining Russell Westbrook and Rajon Rondo.

That’s what they said

After the win Murray pushed back against all the people who’ve been doubting the Nuggets, saying:

“You got (Shaquille O’Neal), you got Charles (Barkley), I think Zach LoweStephen A. (Smith), all y’all better start giving this team some damn respect. Because we put in the work. We shouldn’t have been down 3-1, but to come back down 3-1 against the Clippers is a big achievement, so it’s fun just to change that narrative.”

Jokić echoed much the same tone, saying:

“Nobody wants us here. Nobody thinks we can do something. We proved ourselves and proved everybody we can do something. … We are just not accepting that somebody’s better than us.”

As for the game itself Murray credited the Nuggets ability to outwork L.A. as the reason for the historic win.

“We’ve got a lot of energy, and we brought it and they didn’t match that. They got who they got. They’ve got a talented squad. They’ve got Doc (Rivers), too. They’ve got assistant coaches who are about to be head coaches. We know what they have, we just outworked them a little bit with our young legs.”

As for Nuggets head coach Michael Malone, he couldn’t be more proud of his players.

“I think this is our sixth straight elimination game. Seventy-one days in the bubble and just to stay together, that commitment, that toughness is — you don’t see that around very often. That speaks to the guys in the locker room and how much they love each other. Just an amazing feeling. …
“So proud. All the guys, never got down, believed in each other. Believed in themselves. In light of all the noise outside this series that we had no chance. We have people guaranteeing it. We found a way to beat a really good team three times. I’ve run out of things to say.”

With one L.A. team down, there’s another one waiting for Denver in the form of the L.A. Lakers led by LeBron James. When asked if he’s worried about the upcoming series, Jokić responded:

“They gotta worry about us, too.”

Highlights: Nuggets 104, Clippers 89

Tip-ins

Nuggets vs. Lakers
Western Conference Finals schedule

GameDateTimeChannel
Game 1Fri. Sept. 187 p.m.TNT
Game 2Sun. Sept. 205:30 p.m.TNT
Game 3Tue. Sept. 227 p.m.TNT
Game 4Thur. Sept. 247 p.m.TNT
*Game 5Sat. Sept. 267 p.m.TNT
*Game 6Mon. Sept. 28TBDTNT
*Game 7Wed. Sept. 30TBDTNT
*If necessary. All games played in NBA bubble in Orlando. All time MT

Nuggets vs. Clippers
Western Conference Semifinals results

GameResult
Game 1Clippers 120, Nuggets 97Box score
Game 2Nuggets 110, Clippers 101Box score
Game 3Clippers 113, Nuggets 107Box score
Game 4Clippers 96, Nuggets 85Box score
Game 5Nuggets 111, Clippers 105Box score
Game 6Nuggets 111, Clippers 98Box score
Game 7Nuggets 104, Clippers 89Box score
Nuggets win best-of-seven series 4-3

Nuggets stun Clippers, advance to West finals

For the past 26 years the biggest win in Nuggets’ franchise history was when Denver knocked off the Seattle SuperSonics in the first round of the 1994 NBA playoffs and Dikembe Mutombo was seen on the floor clutching the ball over his head afterward. It’s safe to say there’s a new No. 1 in town […]

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Nuggets rally, force Game 7 vs. Clippers

Despite trailing by 19 points in the third quarter the Nuggets rallied on Sunday afternoon in Orlando to beat the Clippers 111-98 and force Game 7 in the Western Conference semifinals. Center Nikola Jokić led Denver with 34 points, 14 rebounds and six assists. He had this to say after the win: “Maybe this is […]

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Categories
Nuggets

Nuggets rally, force Game 7 vs. Clippers

Despite trailing by 19 points in the third quarter the Nuggets rallied on Sunday afternoon in Orlando to beat the Clippers 111-98 and force Game 7 in the Western Conference semifinals.

Center Nikola Jokić led Denver with 34 points, 14 rebounds and six assists. He had this to say after the win:

“Maybe this is going to sound weird or funny, but we don’t care. We’re just going to go there and have fun. Coach said in the meeting before ‘don’t forget to have fun’ and in the third and fourth quarters we were having fun. You could see everybody was laughing feeling good because we were playing good, we were playing amazing, so when we play like that the confidence is very high.”

Game 7 set for Tuesday night

On Tuesday night (7 p.m., ESPN) the Nuggets will become the first team in NBA history to play in four straight series that went to Game 7. Last season Denver beat San Antonio in the first round before falling to Portland in the semis.

The Clippers meanwhile are trying to reach the conference finals for the first time in their history. The Lakers are waiting for whichever team is victorious in with Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals.

Nuggets-Clippers Game 6 highlights

Tip-ins

Nuggets-Clippers schedule and results

GameResult
Game 1Clippers 120, Nuggets 97Box score
Game 2Nuggets 110, Clippers 101Box score
Game 3Clippers 113, Nuggets 107Box score
Game 4Clippers 96, Nuggets 85Box score
Game 5Nuggets 111, Clippers 105Box score
Game 6Nuggets 111, Clippers 98Box score
Game 7Nuggets 104, Clippers 89Box score
Nuggets win best-of-seven series 4-3

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Nuggets Uncategorized

Porter calls out coaches, teammates after Nuggets’ 96-85 loss Wednesday

The Nuggets lost to the Clippers 96-85 in Game 4 of the Western Conference semifinals Wednesday night in Orlando, but it’s what happened after the game that quickly became the bigger story.

Denver rookie Michael Porter Jr. scored 15 points in the first half on 5-for-6 shooting, he finished the game with 15 points on 5-for-8 shooting. After the game he was asked what he needed to do in the second half to get more involved and here was his response:

“I just didn’t touch the ball. They didn’t do anything differently. … That is up to the playcalling, the coaches and whose hands they want to put the ball in. We kept going to (Nikola Jokić) and (Jamal Murray) and they are two amazing players, but I just think to beat them we need to get more players involved. We have to move the ball a little bit better. We can’t be predictable against that team.”

It didn’t stop there though as Porter went on to say he’s going to talk to the coaches about the plan going forward.

“I think if I am going to be out there on the floor playing a lot of minutes, I think I should voice that. I will probably talk to the coaches and tell them what I see being out there on the floor just letting them know, look, they know what we are doing. We have to swing the ball. We have a lot of players that can play basketball and score, so we have to get some more guys involved.”

Porter said.

Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard voiced his displeasure on Twitter with what Porter said after the game in a series of tweets, including this one, talking about whether Porter’s assessment was correct, just handled poorly:

Clippers stifle Denver offense

As for the actual game, Denver was thoroughly shut down as L.A.’s Kawhi Leonard, Paul George and Patrick Beverley held Murray to 18 points on 6-of-15 shooting, along with seven assists and four turnovers.

Jokić still had a solid game for the Nuggets, finishing with 26 points and 11 rebounds. But it was no match for Leonard who nearly had a triple double with 30 points, 11 boards and nine assists.

Nuggets coach Michael Malone didn’t mince words either after the game, saying:

“We have to be a hell of a lot better on offense. I have to help our guys more. They’re just dogging and hounding Jamal Murray everywhere. It’s been really hard to get him open for quality looks. … We worked so hard for everything we tried to get, and obviously we’re struggling to make shots right now”

Another comeback in store?

The Nuggets once again are trailing 3-1 in a best-of-seven series, but this Clippers team is on a completely different level than that of the Utah Jazz who the Nuggets rallied to beat in seven games.

Obviously anything is possible, but at this point if the Nuggets can manage to eek out a win in Game 5 and force a Game 6 before bowing out of this year’s NBA playoffs that appears to be the most positive outcome remaining.

Nuggets-Clippers Game 4 highlights

Nuggets-Clippers results and schedule

GameResult
Game 1Clippers 120, Nuggets 97Box score
Game 2Nuggets 110, Clippers 101Box score
Game 3Clippers 113, Nuggets 107Box score
Game 4Clippers 96, Nuggets 85Box score
Game 5Nuggets 111, Clippers 105Box score
Game 6Nuggets 111, Clippers 98Box score
Game 7Nuggets 104, Clippers 89Box score
Nuggets win best-of-seven series 4-3

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Nuggets no match for Clippers in Game 1

The Nuggets and Clippers were tied after the first quarter in Thursday night’s opening game of the Western Conference semifinals, from that point on L.A. outscored Denver by 23 and rolled to an easy 120-97 win. Nuggets center Nikola Jokić struggled on both ends of the floor in the loss as he finished with just […]

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Nuggets Uncategorized

Nuggets no match for Clippers in Game 1

The Nuggets and Clippers were tied after the first quarter in Thursday night’s opening game of the Western Conference semifinals, from that point on L.A. outscored Denver by 23 and rolled to an easy 120-97 win.

Nuggets center Nikola Jokić struggled on both ends of the floor in the loss as he finished with just 15 points, three rebounds and three assists. While first-round series star Jamal Murray shot 5-for-15 from the field and ended with 12 points, six assist and three boards.

You can say whatever, it’s gonna be true. It was a bad, bad night for us. But we can change, we can be better.”

Jokić said after the loss.

Clippers at full strength

As for the Clippers, Los Angeles head coach Doc Rivers had his entire roster intact for just the 13th time the season and the first since arriving to the NBA bubble.

Guard Patrick Beverley returned after missing the final five games of L.A.’s first-round series against Dallas. Marcus Morris was no longer having to try and keep up with Dallas’ Luka Dončić and stars Kawhi Leonard and Paul George were in a rhythm early.

“I thought we just locked into our assignments. To be honest, that’s the best we’ve done so far against an opponent. Our attention to detail was great and we followed the game plan … It just took us to lock in tonight and come here and do what we needed to do. There’s no sugar-coating answer or no headline answer. We just locked into what we needed to do, And that was enough for us to play with energy and effort. We just knew what our job was tonight and we executed it.”

George said after the Clippers win in Game 1.

Nuggets fell into L.A.’s trap

According to Nuggets forward Paul Millsap Denver was unable to adjust to the Clippers pressure defense.

“They get up in you, they take you out of the flow of your offense, and they make you take one-on-one or contested shots and we fell right into their trap.”

Millsap said.

Meanwhile, Nuggets coach Michael Malone was much more concerned with the Nuggets inability to guard on the defensive end and for teammates to help out when needed.

“Can we contain one-on-one, and can we guard the paint?. A guy gets beat, where’s our help?”

Malone said.

Nuggets-Clippers Game 1 highlights

Tip-ins

As TheAthletic.com’s Kendra Andrews wrote, after getting blown out in Game 1 the Nuggets need to find answers and energy as well.

  • The Denver Post’s Mark Kiszla wrote that there was no defending the way Jokić played in Thursday’s opener.
  • In other NBA news Thursday, Memphis’ Ja Morant was named the Kia Rookie of the Year. Miami’s Kendrick Nunn finished second and New Orleans’ Zion Williamson was third.
    I was a little surprised Denver’s Michael Porter Jr. didn’t even get a single third-place vote, considering players like Eric Paschall (Golden State), Terence Davis II (Toronto) and RJ Barrett (New York) did.

Nuggets-Clippers results and schedule

GameResult
Game 1Clippers 120, Nuggets 97Box score
Game 2Nuggets 110, Clippers 101Box score
Game 3Clippers 113, Nuggets 107Box score
Game 4Clippers 96, Nuggets 85Box score
Game 5Nuggets 111, Clippers 105Box score
Game 6Nuggets 111, Clippers 98Box score
Game 7Nuggets 104, Clippers 89Box score
Nuggets win best-of-seven series 4-3

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