NBA regular season

Nuggets hand Celtics first home loss of season


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Nuggets hand Celtics first home loss of season

UNSTOPPABLE. Nuggets center Nikola Jokic drives the ball against Celtics center Al Horford.

David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports/Reuters

Even the Celtics, currently the league’s best team, find it hard to stop the powerhouse Nuggets duo of Nikola Jokic and Jamal Murray

Jamal Murray scored a game-high 35 points and Nikola Jokic added 34 to help the Denver Nuggets hand the Boston Celtics their first home loss of the season with a 102-100 victory on Friday night, January 19 (Saturday, January 20, Manila time).

Murray made 15 of 21 shots from the floor. He also had 8 rebounds and 5 assists. Jokic finished with 12 rebounds and 9 assists.

Jayson Tatum missed a 17-foot jump shot that would have tied the score with three seconds to play. Denver came up with the rebound and ran out the clock.

Boston entered the game 20-0 at home this season, and had won 27 straight home games dating back to last season.

Derrick White led the Celtics with 24 points. Tatum finished with 22 and Kristaps Porzingis had 21. Porzingis, who scored Boston’s first 11 points, was held to 2 points in the second half.

Al Horford had 10 rebounds for Boston, which had its three-game winning streak end.

The Celtics were 14-of-44 from beyond the three-point arc. Jaylen Brown scored 13 points, but was 1-of-9 on three-point attempts. Tatum was 1-of-8 on three-pointers.

The Celtics went on a 7-0 run to take a 98-95 lead with 4:51 to play, but Denver took the lead for good on a Jokic basket that put the Nuggets in front 99-98 with 3:36 remaining.

Michael Porter Jr. finished with 13 points and 8 rebounds and Aaron Gordon added 10 rebounds for Denver.

Boston led 32-31 after one quarter, built a 12-point lead in the second and had a 61-55 advantage at halftime. Porzingis, Murray and Jokic each scored 19 in the first half.

A Jokic triple put Denver in front 69-68 with seven minutes left in the third, but Boston responded with a 9-0 run to take a 77-69 lead. 

The Nuggets scored the final 8 points in the third and trailed 82-81 entering the fourth. White scored 13 of Boston’s 21 points in the third. –

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