Denver is the only team left in playoff contention looking from the outside in. They squared off against Portland last night, and looked like a team that doesn’t want to give up as they put together a low scoring win 88-82. The Blazers still have something to play for too, so it was even that much more impressive.
The Nuggets have the second largest win streak in the NBA heading into crunch time and the best in the west. They are playing their best basketball they’ve played all season, and if you are a Denver fan you have got to be feeling somewhat optimistic knowing that they have control over their own destiny. You don’t have to worry about which team is doing what with 7 out of the 8 spots secured.
The Nuggets play Minnesota on Wednesday in the final game of the season and with a win they will clinch the last playoff spot. It will be their first playoff berth since 2013.
Nikola Jokic posted is 10th triple double on the season (16th career) tallying 15 points, 20 rebounds, and 11 assists. The Nuggets trailed most of the game but never stopped fighting and four minutes into the 4th quarter, they climbed their way into the lead and never looked back.
Great news for Denver that their second leading scorer was able to go tonight after missing nearly a month with a knee injury. Gary Harris leads the team in steals as well and will be a very important piece in the teams success in the playoffs, if they make it. Off the bench in his return, he put up 12 points and sunk two important free throws at the end of the game.
If the Nuggets can clinch, It will be interesting to see what lineup Coach Mike Malone chooses to go with as Harris had been a starter all season. The way Will Barton has played in his absence, (averaging 18PTS, 5REB, and 3AST) will make it difficult to take him out of that starting role, and potentially mess with a chemistry that has got it going on right now.
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