Nikola Jokic’s stellar performance propelled the Denver Nuggets to a 111-108 triumph over the struggling Los Angeles Clippers in an NBA In-Season Tournament game. Despite James Harden’s impactful contributions, the Clippers faced challenges, extending their losing streak since acquiring Harden.
Jokic’s Perfect Free Throws
Jokic’s dominance was evident with 32 points, 16 rebounds, and nine assists. His perfect 14-for-14 free throw shooting, including crucial makes with 13 seconds left, played a pivotal role in the Nuggets holding off the Clippers’ comeback attempt.
Harden’s Best Game, Clippers’ Struggles Continue
James Harden, since joining the Clippers on October 30, delivered his best performance with 21 points. However, the Clippers lost their fifth straight game with Harden and sixth in a row overall. Harden acknowledged the learning curve and emphasized continuous improvement.
Paul George’s Season-High Effort
Paul George tied a season-high with 35 points, showcasing individual brilliance for the Clippers. Despite a strong performance, George expressed frustration with the officiating, citing numerous instances of perceived poor calls.
Gordon and Jackson’s Contributions
Aaron Gordon contributed 20 points, and Reggie Jackson added 18 for the Denver Nuggets. The absence of point guard Jamal Murray, out for the fourth straight game, didn’t hinder the Nuggets’ performance in the West Group B matchup.
Clutch Moments and Clippers’ Challenges
In a tightly contested game, Denver seemed to seal the victory with crucial plays, including Jokic’s assist to Gordon for a dunk. The Clippers, despite Harden’s aggressive plays, faced challenges, with missed free throws and defensive lapses down the stretch.
Nikola Jokic’s all-around excellence and clutch free throws proved decisive as the Denver Nuggets secured a hard-fought victory over the struggling Los Angeles Clippers. The win further highlighted the Clippers’ ongoing challenges, despite impactful performances from stars like James Harden and Paul George. As the NBA In-Season Tournament unfolds, both teams aim to address their strengths and weaknesses for future success.