The Denver Nuggets used a huge fourth quarter to pull away to a 117-109 victory against a short-handed Spurs team playing on the second night of a back-to-back set.
Here are seven takeaways from Denver’s eighth win in 11 contests:
1. Another triple-double. Perhaps the biggest testament to Nikola Jokic’s talent and versatility? His triple-doubles are almost becoming an afterthought. He finished with 23 points, 13 rebounds and 11 assists against the Spurs, getting over that hump with four assists in the fourth quarter. When asked about his performance, Jokic went into “Joker” mode by asking if he could answer the question in the style of teammate Will Barton:
“(I) expected that, probably,” Jokic said. “That’s what I do. That’s my thing. I was aggressive, and then they started collapsing on me, and then I just made an extra pass. That was an easy, easy game for me.”
Spurs coach Gregg Popovich also gave one of the best assessments of Jokic’s game by an opposing coach all season, rivaling Golden State’s Steve Kerr comparing Jokic to the center of a pinwheel:
“He’s got one of those George Gervin paces about him, you know,” Popovich said. “He looks like he’s just kind of waltzing around and that kind of thing. But he’s so skilled. He can shoot it. He passes. He’s just a very smart player.”
2. Murray toughs it out. No surprise that Jamal Murray played through “chest soreness,” given he’s missed just one game in his career since high school. He finished with 17 points, five rebounds and two steals and with a team-high plus/minus of plus-19. Murray declined to specify what exactly is making it tough for him to breathe, but said he’s been icing his chest because it’s inflamed. Over the past couple days, Murray said he’s been in pain while sleeping, driving …read more
Source:: The Denver Post