NBA Finals: The Nuggets steal the 2 games at the Heat’s home; to a gain of their 1st title


The Denver Nuggets dominated a second straight game at home to the Miami Heat to close in on an NBA championship win on Friday with a 108-95 victory in Game 4.

The Nuggets, who have never been champion in their 47 season, will have the chance to celebrate in front of their fans on Monday for the return of the confrontation in Colorado.

“That’s what we play basketball for, to get that chance. Now we are more focused than ever on our goal,” said Jamal Murray.

Despite indiscipline bringing him within a single personal foul of being sent off, Nikola Jokic once again gave his rivals a hard time, racking up 23 points, 12 rebounds, four assists and three steals in 37 minutes of game. The Nuggets still held on in the absence of their star center to prevent him from being sent off too quickly at the start of the fourth quarter.

“The guys got up. The Heat started the quarter with an 8-0 streak and Jokic had his fifth foul. I can say that in season, when I had to withdraw Nikola in this way, everything got carried away. But tonight, and throughout the series, the minutes even without Jokic are working well for us,” Nuggets coach Michael Malone said.

The double “MVP” of the NBA – during the 2020-2021 and 2021-2022 seasons – came in this fourth duel the first player in history to accumulate 500 points, 250 rebounds and 150 assists in the same playoff calendar.

“Our teammates were incredible, launched Jamal Murray before listing several players. It was a team effort, I can only name one. We are missing a win now. »

Aaron Gordon was Denver’s leading scorer, posting his best offensive performance of the playoffs with 27 points (3/4 3-pointers) and six assists.

“He was confident and we wanted to stay aggressive. He was watching Jimmy Butler too. This evening was his,” Murray commented on Gordon. The Canadian finished the game with 15 points, 12 assists and no turnovers.

“It doesn’t matter, Jamal will find a way to impact the game. He had 15 points tonight, 12 assists and no turnovers, despite the defensive coverage, it’s worth mentioning. He was not trying to do too much, he was doing the right readings, ”said his coach.

“Aaron Gordon was amazing the whole game. He was a warrior and played with all his heart,” Malone described.

Bruce Brown meanwhile allowed the Nuggets to sail to victory by delivering the goods in the fourth quarter, where he collected 11 of his 21 points.

The only team to have already overcome a 1-3 deficit in the NBA Grand Finals to finally triumph is the 2016 edition of the Cleveland Cavaliers, against the Golden State Warriors.

“I told the guys to experience what he felt tonight. We have a very competitive group and we will have to continue. We will be looking to bring this series back to Miami. Then everything can change quickly,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra commented after the game.

“We’re in a situation where we absolutely have to win, but we know we can do it,” Jimmy Butler said after the loss.

“We have no doubts, we are not going to give up. We will get back to work and do better. We have no choice,” he added.

Very busy (33 minutes), Kyle Lowry did his good part with 13 points. Champion with Toronto in 2019, the veteran has greatly helped the Heat stay in the game – relatively.

Max Strus was shut out for the second time in the final, attempting just four shots. He was limited to three points in Game 3.

Strus was a big cog for the Heat in the second round (averaging 14.7 points, including three times a 40% success rate on three-pointers).

Gabe Vincent had just two points, on the heels of seven points in Game 3. In the first two games of the series, he had 19 and 23 points.

Miami often made one pass too many or missed shots from close range – or both. When it wasn’t the lack of precision, it was a lack of cohesion.

For example, an errant pass from Adebayo to Strus who had left his position to cut to the basket, in the fourth minute of the third quarter. The two athletes seemed quite discouraged afterwards. Denver quickly added four points to the board, extending their lead to 65-55.

“Each time we managed to approach eight or six points, they came back to have a gap of 12 points. It’s definitely a frustrating part of the game and Brown was a cause of that with his breakthrough shots,” Spoelstra said.

Early in the final quarter, a field goal and free throw from Butler cut the Nuggets lead to 86-81, before a three-point shot from Murray.

Midway through the engagement, Jeff Green hit the target from long range, bringing the Nuggets’ priority to 94-85.

The Heat won the championship in 2006, 2012 and 2013.

2023-06-10 06:35:39
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