The news came out earlier today that Denver Nuggets superstar big man Nikola Jokic was going to miss tonight’s game due to right wrist injury management. It didn’t matter for the best team in the Western Conference as the Nuggets still went into Los Angeles and captured a 115-103 victory over the Clippers.
Denver got really solid games from their big three — Jamal Murray, Michael Porter Jr., Aaron Gordon — and even got really great production from Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Zeke Nnaji, who stepped up off the bench in Jokic’s absence. Jamal Murray led the way with 24 points to go along with eight rebounds and four assists, while going an extremely efficient 4-of-7 from beyond the arc.
Jamal with 13 in the first half pic.twitter.com/56XxkJbkX8— Denver Nuggets (@nuggets) January 14, 2023
Porter was right behind Murray was 22 points and made some big shots in crunch time when the Clippers were trying to make a comeback. Gordon had a real efficient night scoring 17 points on 6-of-8 shooting from the field, 2-of-3 from three, while also hauling in five rebounds and dishing out five assists. Caldwell-Pope also finished in double-figures with 14 points, while Nnaji chipped in nine points and seven rebounds off the bench.
The Nuggets used a phenomenal second half to pull away from the Clippers as they outscored LA 29-23 in the third quarter and 29-22 in the fourth. Los Angeles led by one point at halftime, but the Nuggets dominated from that point on and did a really great job picking up the slack on both ends of the floor in Jokic’s absence.
With the win, the Nuggets record moves to 29-13, which is still good for first place in the Western Conference. Denver will be back in action on Sunday when they welcome the Orlando Magic to town as they’ll look to win their 19 home game of the season and their 13th straight.