Nuggets Stay Sharp In Win Over Clippers

The Denver Nuggets took a step in the right direction.

Welcoming the eighth-seeded Clippers to Ball Arena, the Nuggets finished with a high-energy win on Tuesday as LA pushed Denver all evening.

Denver had been feeling the heat of the seventh-seeded Minnesota Timberwolves, only a game behind in the standings to the sixth-seeded Nuggets.

Nikola Jokic and company got the job done against the Clips: winning 127-115. 

Denver’s scoring and passing were the main attraction on Tuesday.

The Nuggets held an 11-point lead going into halftime, taking advantage of the defensive struggles suffered by the depleted Clippers roster — still without Paul George, Kawhi Leonard and Norman Powell.

Aaron Gordon

One of the Nuggets’ successes of the night was their three-point shooting.

Denver was shooting 57.1 percent from beyond the arc (compared to LAC’s 33.3 percent) and 61.9 percent from the field at the end of two quarters.

The Clippers went into the half outrebounded, 21-16, but saw quality minutes put in by reserve center Isaiah Hartenstein.

Hartenstein provided some much-needed scoring — finishing with 14 points on 5-of-7 shooting and five assists.

Reigning NBA MVP Nikola Jokic had 19 points at the half — boosting the home crowd at Ball Arena. He finished with 30 (9-of-15) for the night.

For the majority of the night, the Nuggets had a stronghold on the Clippers with a double-digit lead.

Los Angeles’ defense woke up in the third quarter, extending into the early fourth quarter, where the Clippers found themselves only down by single digits. 

Luke Kennard hit a three early in the fourth to cut Denver’s lead down (99-91).

The Clippers’ big run to cut the lead down to two points was a wake-up call for the Nuggets.

Denver answered the call by hitting three after three to bury LA in the final three minutes of action.

Los Angeles’ Terance Mann had a standout game: scoring 24 points on 7-of-10 shooting.

The Nuggets hit 16 three-pointers on the night.

Michael Malone and the Nuggets were delighted to see their shots go in from deep, but it was Denver’s Bones Hyland that stood out as the X-factor in the win.

Hyland scored 16 points in 18 minutes. Hyland’s highlight of the night was a dagger three (his fourth make in six attempts), which put the Clippers back down double digits with three minutes left.

Denver snapped a two-game losing streak to stick with the sixth seed in the West (43-30). 


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