Nikola Jokic Records Third Consecutive Triple-Double, Leading Nuggets to 119-103 Victory Over Warriors

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Nikola Jokic insists he’s not changing anything during his latest run of triple-double dominance, just finding the flow of the game as it comes.

Doing it all for Denver on both ends yet again, Jokic has the defending champions off to a 3-0 start after the All-Star break following a three-game skid right before it.

Jokic had 32 points, 16 rebounds and 16 assists for his third straight triple-double and 18th of the season after his long buzzer-beater against Golden State sealed the last meeting, leading the Nuggets past the Warriors again in a 119-103 victory Sunday night.

“We had three losses before All-Star break now we have three wins. It’s how the game is, a game of runs. In season you have a good period, bad period, you want to have a longer good period than bad and a short bad period,” Jokic said. “I think we are just going in the right direction. That is the most important thing.”

Jokic hit a Stephen Curry-like 40-footer as Denver rallied for a 130-127 win at Chase Center on Jan. 4, then topped Curry and Co. to sweep the four-game season series. On Sunday, Jokic shot 13 for 24 on the way to his 122nd career regular-season triple-double.

Nuggets coach Michael Malone is thrilled with his team’s focus as the regular season winds down — and sweeping the Warriors in four games this season certainly makes a statement. This marked the 10th time a Golden State opponent won after trailing by double digits.

“I felt for the first quarter and a half they were the aggressor, they had us on our heels and we were reacting to everything they did,” Malone said. “For us to close out 14-0 and then to start the third 14-4, I think we kind of flipped the switch and we became the aggressor on both ends and stopped thinking and started playing with an attack mindset and an aggressive mindset, and I think that’s when we’re at our best.”

Klay Thompson scored 23 points all in the first half and Curry overcame a slow start missing his first seven 3-point tries before finishing with 20 points — all but four scored in the second half. He hit his only 3 with 3:26 left in the third in a 1-for-10 performance from deep. The two-time MVP passed both Dwyane Wade (23,165) for 32nd place and Adrian Dantley (23,177) for 31st on the NBA’s scoring list.

Jamal Murray scored 27 points and Aaron Gordon 17 in the Nuggets’ seventh consecutive victory against the Warriors and 10th in 11 and also their fifth in a row on Golden State’s home floor since a 113-102 defeat on March 10, 2022.

The last opponent to beat the Warriors seven or more times in a row was the Grizzlies’ 11 straight from November 2010 to November 2013.

Down 65-61 after Curry’s driving layup at the 10:30 mark of the third, the Nuggets answered with another 14-0 burst to go up 75-65. Jokic scored consecutive layups before Murray scored five straight. They also ended the first half on a 14-0 run over the final 2:47 to tie the game at 61 heading into intermission.

“I thought we had two or three offensive possessions where we didn’t get organized and we got stagnant,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. “And that hurt our flow. We were in a good rhythm until then and the pace slowed down. So we needed to get better organized offensively. And then they hit some tough shots.”

Thompson hit 5 of his initial 7 shots and 4 of 6 3-pointers and had 23 points by halftime on 7-for-12 shooting. He received a warm standing ovation when he sat down for a breather with 4:51 to go in the second quarter.

Jonathan Kuminga scored 19 points and Andrew Wiggins made his first four shots on the way to 14 for Golden State, which had won three straight and 10 of 12.

“To win here after how good they’re playing lately, it’s a good win for us,” Jokic said.

Draymond Green had seven points, five rebounds and four assists in his first matchup with Denver this season after missing the previous three — two of those while serving separate suspensions and the first on Nov. 8 for personal reasons.

Kevon Looney played his 284th consecutive game in both regular season and playoffs, matching Neil Johnston for fifth-longest such streak in franchise history.


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