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Summary: Nuggets at Warriors - Denver Stiffs

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After a disappointing defeat to the Utah Jazz on opening night, the Denver Nuggets head to Chase Center to pick up the reigning champions Golden State Warriors. Jamal Murray was unlisted earlier in the day due to a left knee injury. Newly recruited Nugget, Bruce Brown Jr., replaced Jamal Murray as quarterback.

The Nuggets started the game very well, scoring an elite level and Steph Curry’s 13 points in the first half. The Nuggets bench also played better than anyone expected, scoring 38 points. Bones Hyland and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope are back from a tough trip in Utah. No matter how close the end of the game is, it’s a great sign for the rest of the season that the Nuggets beat the defending champions Warriors as they did at Chase Center. Bruce Brown scored 20 points, including the dunk at the end of the game that made him unattainable for the Warriors. Brown also shot 8-10 with 3 3-pointers and 5 assists. The final MVP finished with 26 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists, only 1 behind Wilt Chamberlain for his first triple-double of the season and 77th of his career. Winning a game in which Steph Curry scored 34 points with 5 threes is an incredible feat. Now we can all put the Utah game behind us.

First quarter:

Michael Porter Jr. opens the game with a tough three-pointer for the Nuggets, and Nikola Jokić follows up by going to Kevon Looney to find a bucket under the basket. Andrew Wiggins gave the Warriors his first 5 points from MPJ’s lackluster defense, Porter Jr. followed by a three-point pull-up pass and then a foul on Steph Curry for a 4-point game. Wiggins flashed early as the Nuggets couldn’t keep up with the Warriors’ offensive ball movement. Michael Porter Jr. He scored 6 points in the first 5 minutes but the Warriors have targeted him defensively in nearly every game, checking rookie Christian Braun at 7:22 of the first quarter.

Christian Braun has 2 rebounds and steals early, he’s definitely earned his minutes so far despite his lack of offensive production. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope starts the game with a perfect 4-4 shot after a disappointing away game against the Jazz. Coach Malone early uses his challenge to the Steph Curry trio for a Bruce Brown foul, unsuccessful. The bench arrives to finish first, and DeAndre Jordan immediately slams the paint into a hard dunk. Bones Hyland scores 4 points in a row for the Nuggets and then finds Jeff Green with 2 3-pointers, a 10-3 series for the Nuggets. There were 14 margins in the first quarter but the Nuggets prevailed 40-34. Both teams shot over 65% in the first half, and the Nuggets shot 71% from three-pointers with 11 assists.

Second quarter:

DeAndre Jordan opens the second half with a one-handed lob from Davon Reed. Jeff Green scores 2 free throws to put the Nuggets up 10. The bench looks much calmer and less crazy both offensively and defensively. Jordan is leading by 7 points without missing a shot, and Jeff Green, 36, shoots an attack after a turnover in a quick break.

Bones Hyland continues to dominate the game with 11 points and 3 assists in just 10 minutes. Both teams’ offenses cooled from the first quarter, scoring only 12 and 7 points respectively in the first 5 minutes of the second quarter. The starters were back in the game and widened the lead to 14. The second half of the quarter got a bit ugly with 3 Nuggets turnovers in under a minute. Fortunately, only 3 shots were fired from both teams in just over 2 minutes. The Nuggets solidified the lead by 20 points, 8 points behind the Joker in 6 positions. Halftime score 70-52 Nuggets lead. Keeping the Warriors offense 18 points in the quarter is no easy task. Both the Nuggets offense and defense rolled in as they scored another 30 points in the quarter.

Third quarter:

After Curry fouls with a three-pointer, MPJ finds another well-argued three-pointer on the court. While he still has room to grow as he moves back into the NBA-level game, his smash hit doesn’t look like he missed a beat. The Warriors go into a 7-0 streak and Coach Malone seeks a timeout and the Nuggets fire just 3 shots in the first 4 minutes of the quarter. With Jokić and the starters still on the court, the Warriors narrowed the lead to 7 when the Nuggets failed to score a field goal. Draymond Green showed elite playmaking, defense and offense that the Nuggets failed to respond to. Draymond scored 7 points in the quarter. Aaron Gordon had a 2-minute scoring run for the Nuggets with 8 points in the 3rd minute. Malone wants another timeout and most of the bench arrives after the break.

Bones Hyland enters the game and gets 2 assists, one for Christian Braun for the first basket of his NBA career.

Braun takes a feint from Jordan Poole and takes him from coast to coast for a layup. After breaking the seal of the basket, it looks like Braun will be the cornerstone of the rotation for his defense and his determination to rebound basketball. Although the Nuggets’ offense and defense have dropped from the first half, they’re still up 10 to finish the quarter. The 98-88 Nuggets are about to start the 4th quarter.

Fourth quarter:

Michael Porter Jr. reopens the quarter with another three-pointer, 5th of the match. MPJ is the only player on the bench, but commits 2 fouls early and should be ejected in favor of KCP. The Nuggets allow the Warriors to score 3 times from second-chance spots in the first 3 minutes of the quarter, resulting in Malone getting another timeout. Jokić makes a great pass into the corner for KCP’s three-pointer to break a long scoring run of nearly 3 minutes.

The Nuggets are leading by 7 points with 6 minutes left in the game. KCP got another three pointer, but the momentum is in the Warriors’ favour. Jokić hit the post hard against Draymond Green, -1 and inflicted his 5th foul on Green. Curry was the Warriors’ three-pointer at the start of the 4th quarter.

Jokić counters with his first dunk of the season. But Curry counters with another three-pointer in a row. It’s a 5-point game with 2 minutes left. Bruce Brown takes a float to go and buries a three-pointer in the next ball. Again Curry responds with a deep three-pointer and the Warriors immediately force Jokić to make a turnover. Bruce Brown takes it coast to coast for a tough layup without hesitation. Klay Thompson breaks into the Warriors’ three-point game endgame and puts the game in 4 for the Warriors. Bones Hyland fouls with 23 seconds to hit either of them. Draymond Green is sent to the line and takes both free throws, the ball is sent to Bones where he flips the ball and Poole sets the layup. Jokić immediately sends Bruce Brown a wide open dunk across the diagonal court, providing his 10th assist of the game and a triple-double.

The Warriors had a chance to finish the game with a 3 draw with just 13 seconds left. Klay Thompson takes the shot deep and misses everything. Jokić has a frightening fall but looks good and takes his free throws down. The Nuggets won 128-123.

package services:

First off, what a game. Jokić had his first triple-double of the season, with Bruce Brown making his debut as a Nugget. Christian Braun has shown tremendous potential as a role player and will definitely compete for a rotation spot without skipping. Michael Porter Jr. showed he was more dominant offensively than ever before, making Curry the most 3-pointers in the game with 5 points. He played great from the signature bench. The only negative I saw in this game was Aaron Gordon shooting 0-6 out of 3, even then he hit some clutch baskets and played his role perfectly.

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