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Nuggets Get Back To Winning Ways as Jokic Silences Celtics

The Nuggets were back in action Thursday night as they looked to get back to their winning ways as they played the team with the best record in the NBA, the Boston Celtics. However, the Nuggets had the advantage as they were playing at home and looking to get vengeance after just losing their 6 game winning streak at home to the Phoenix Suns. But, the Celtics were also looking to get some vengeance as they too lost an 11 game winning steak to the Cavaliers on Thursday night. Both teams are potential NBA final contenders so they were hoping that these losses were just blemishes on their resumes as they looked to get back in the win column on a beautiful night in The Mile High City.

The game in the 5280 started off with The Nuggets win the tip-off and creating a play where Aaron Gordan made a slick pass to Michael Porter Jr who finished it with a nice right-handed lay-up. After that, the quarter was relatively even with Boston responding with a 3 by Jayson Tatum. Then after a couple of buckets to make it 7-4 Celtics, Jokic made a sick pass to AG who dunked it with enthusiasm to spark some energy in the home crowd. A couple of Boston buckets later and it was 11-6 Celtics and Jokic created a spin-move to keep it close. Eventually the game got to a tie where it was 16-16. As the quarter progressed it kept going back and forth until the last possession of the first quarter when Boston was up 1 and Denver had the ball. The ball was in Jamal Murray’s hands and then he shot a 3 at the buzzer and got it to go making the score at the first half 30-28 Nuggets. Then Denver went on a 6-0 run making it 36-30 and they kept the momentum going until the last play of the possession in the second quarter when Denver was up 60-54, and they had the ball. The ball, was in Jokic’s hands this time and he shot a contested 2 at the buzzer to make the score at halftime be 62-54 Nuggets. Overall the Nuggets scored 32 points in the second quarter compared to Boston’s 26. The noticeable players for both teams in the half were  Jaylen Brown for The Celtics and Nikola Jokic for The Nuggets.

Then going into the 3rd quarter The Celtics started to heat up as they got it to within 2 as Porizingis got a couple of 3’s making the score 62-60 Nuggets, and eventually they got it to 68-68. However, The Nuggets went on a 6-0 run making it 74-68 Nuggets, and the game went back and forth until it was 87-78 making it the largest Nuggets lead of the night. Then after a Celtic bucket the ball was in KCP’s hands with 36 seconds and he shot a 3 making it 90-80, and that was what the score finished with in the 3rd quarter. In the 4th quarter, The Celtics made the game close as they got it to 92-85. However, The Nuggets kept their energy going as a couple possessions later the score was 105-94 with 4 minutes left. Then the Celtics started to pull it back again as they got it to within 2 with 21 seconds remaining. But, despite their late efforts it was not enough as Jokic threw up a lob to AG who slammed in the game-sealing dunk to seal the deal. The final score of the game was 115-109 as KCP shot 2 free-throws at the end and gave the Nuggets fans a sigh of relief as they managed to bounce back in this game against the best team in the NBA. With the win the Nuggets have a record of 44-20 and a 25-6 record at home, and our only game back from 1st place.

However, The Nuggets couldn’t have got this win without Nikola Jokic, Jamal Murray, Aaron Gordan. These 3 players were vital to getting the win as Jokic got 32 points, 12 rebounds, 11 assists for another triple double. Jamal Murray got 19 points, 6 rebounds and 8 assists, AG got 16 points, 9 rebounds. But, one player for the Nuggets who was underrated in the win was Peyton Watson who came off the bench and got 11 points and was really solid and strong defensively with a couple a major of big time blocks to gain momentum. As when asked about bouncing back from The Suns game Nuggets head coach Michael Malone said “Oh ya it was another playoff atmosphere for sure, as we talked pre-game and you got to give the Celtics fans credit they always come out strong. I am proud about the way we responding after the loss against Phoenix. As are guys were disciplined tonight, they went 11 for 38 for only 29 % and I thought the bench was outstanding tonight”. Then when talking specifically about Peyton Watson’s performance he said “Peyton Watson was amazing his impact on both sides of the floor was just critical in getting this win”. With Malone’s post game comments it really shows that he thinks the Nuggets should be winning every game and even when they don’t the Nuggets showed they have it in them to bounce back from a tough loss and use every player to do so. Anyways, Denver’s defense hopes to continue holding their opponents players to a low caliper of scoring when they play the Utah Jazz for a 3rd straight home game on Saturday.


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