Even before the start of the 2023 NBA Finals, Denver Nuggets head coach Michael Malone knew that his team was going to be in a dogfight against the stubborn Miami Heat side that doesn't have the word quit in its vocabulary. After losing to the Heat in Game 2 at home Sunday night to the tune of a 111-108 score, it's the Nuggets' turn to show Miami how resilient the Western Conference champions are.
“Our objective now is to find a way to go down to Miami and steal one back,” Malone told Nuggets players in the locker room following their first home loss in these playoffs. ” Which is what we're gonna do because we're going to play harder than them and be more disciplined than them.”
The Nuggets started Game 2 flat, as they let Miami get to a 10-2 lead and finish the first quarter with a three-point lead. Denver would go down to work in the second quarter and even established a 15-point lead at one point in the contest. But the no-surrender Heat, on the strength of an explosive Duncan Robinson performance, went on a tear in the final quarter on their way to stealing a game in Denver.
Malone did not like how inconsistent the Nuggets played in Game 2 and rued about it during the postgame press conference. Expect Malone to further hammer his point about wanting to see a more intense sense of urgency for the Nuggets going forward, beginning in Game 3 on Wednesday at the Heat's home court.