It’s incredibly nice to have Nuggets basketball back following the All-Star break and what better way to start a late season run like a victory over one of the best teams in the Eastern Conference? Well, that’s what the Nuggets accomplished Thursday night courtesy of a 115-109 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The victory pushes the Nuggets record to 42-18, which is a full 5.5 games clear of the Memphis Grizzlies for first place in the Western Conference. Denver continues to fire on all cylinders as they could have easily just coasted and mailed this game in following a long break, but they didn’t. Denver went into Cleveland and took care of business against a Cavaliers team that will give every team a run for it’s money night in and night out.

Denver was led offensively by Nikola Jokic, who recorded yet another triple-double tallying 24 points, 18 rebounds, and 13 assists on an efficient 8-of-13 shooting from the field, 2-of-2 from beyond the three-point line. Jokic was not the Nuggets leading scorer though as that title belonged to Michael Porter Jr., who poured in 25 points behind six three-pointers in his 29 minutes of action.

Porter made some really big shots in the third quarter when it looked as if the Cavaliers were gaining some momentum attempting to pull away from the Nuggets. Not only did Porter hit some big shots, but the same can be said for Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, who scored 17 points behind a perfect 4-for-4 night from distance.

Jamal Murray (16), Jeff Green (11), and Vlatko Cancar (10) also finished in double-figures as the Nuggets used a true team effort — like they always do — to secure the victory. With the win, Denver has now won four straight games as they head into a big time matchup against the Grizzlies on Saturday night in Memphis.

Also of note, Reggie Jackson made his debut for the Nuggets scoring seven points, hauling in four rebounds, and dishing out two assists in his 18 minutes off the bench. Jackson shot just 2-of-8 from the field, but one of his made baskets was pretty special as it beat the third quarter buzzer from beyond half court.

Saturday night will be another prime opportunity for the Nuggets to make a statement win as they push to finish the season strong in pursuit of a postseason run to capture the first championship in franchise history.