Nuggets force Game 7 by erasing 19-point 2nd-half deficit vs. Clippers
But the Nuggets will live to see another day after a 111-98 comeback victory just two days after erasing a 16-point second-half deficit in Game 5.
The Nuggets looked out of sorts toward the end of the first half, and they trailed by as much as 19 early in the third quarter.
However, Nikola Jokic and Co. simply would not fold. The Nuggets outscored the Clippers 30-9 over the final 10 minutes of the third quarter, and they continued to make big plays in the final period.
Jokic in particular caught fire. After going just 2-for-6 from the floor in the third quarter, the All-Star center was unconscious in the fourth.
The Joker rained in a trio of early 3-pointers to keep the Nuggets in front, and also put his stamp on the quarter with one of his patented, high-arcing fadeaway jumpers off one foot.
With Jokic firing on all cylinders, the rout was on. The Nuggets demolished a demoralized Clippers team in the fourth, outscoring LA 34-19 in the last period.
Denver got contributions from just about everyone. Jamal Murray had 21 points and made big plays all second half. Gary Harris scored eight points in the final quarter and had 16 for the game after missing much of the early play in the bubble. Michael Porter Jr. and Monte Morris also scored in double figures off the bench.
But Jokic was the star of the show, finishing with 34 points, 14 rebounds and seven assists.
This is the second consecutive game the Nuggets have staved off elimination by coming from behind. Whereas Murray starred in the team’s first-round series, Jokic is helping Denver fight back against the Clippers.
Meanwhile, Los Angeles will go looking for answers as the Clippers prepare for a winner-take-all Game 7 on Tuesday.