Danilo Gallinari made his first on-court appearance in Denver with as a Clipper, and while he put up a vintage Gallo stat line, it was overshadowed by a balanced Nuggets attack that never let up. Led by Nikola Jokic’s 18-14-10 triple-double and Jamal Murray’s 23 points, the Nuggets willed their way to an impressive 121-100 blowout win over the Los Angeles Clippers.
Without Gary Harris, Malone ran with the same starting lineup from last game - and they got off to a great start on both ends. The offense looked healthy and the defense forced several turnovers as Denver got out running. Malik Beasley was red hot to start; he and Danilo Gallinari traded three-point makes three separate times. Outside of Gallo, though, the Clippers struggled to get anything going as the Nuggets pulled away early. Unfortunately, Nikola Jokic picked up a couple of early fouls, but Mason Plumlee had a strong start off the bench, as Denver led 37-25 after one.
The bench was able to keep things going to start the second. Torrey Craig hit a three and Monte Morris scored a few times as Denver built a 16-point lead. As the starters trickled back in, though, that lead began to dissipate a bit. Gallo led the Clippers on a little run, but even with it Murray and Jokic were able to help keep LA at bay. The Nuggets closed the half on a 8-2 run and a 65-54 lead.
Tobias Harris got the Clippers off to a fast start in the second half, quickly prompting a Nuggets timeout. Whatever was said worked - Denver exploded out for a 12-2 run of their own, including a huge Millsap dunk and a ridiculous 70-foot baseball pass from Jokic to Murray for a dunk. From there, the floodgates opened and everyone got involved. Mason Plumlee hit two free throws, Trey Lyles hit a three, and even when Boban Marjanovic checked in the Nuggets were able to counter his looming presence with ease.
What an outrageous human being pic.twitter.com/WDa2O7rong— Max Carlin (@mcarlinwustl) January 11, 2019
The Nuggets onslaught continued well into the fourth - the team had six players in double-figures in a very balanced effort. Gallo and Lou Williams tried their best to keep the Clippers in striking distance but the Nuggets had an answer every time. Final score: Nuggets 121, Clippers 100
Game Notes and Thoughts
- Nothing to see here... just a 23 year old center putting on another clinic and notching his 21st career triple-double. It seemed almost effortless. What a treat.
- Other notable stat lines: Mason Plumlee with 17-12-5, Torrey Craig with 14 point and A++ effort, Malik Beasley who had 11 in the first quarter alone. Jamal Murray with a quiet 23 points. Tonight was a great showcase of the Nuggets depth.
- 28-12. Still in first place. Feels good, man.