A surprise ‘super rookie’ is key to Denver win

Denver is definitely the team to beat this season.

The Denver Nuggets defeated the Miami Heat 109-94 in Game 3 of the 2023 NBA Finals at the Amway Center in Miami, Florida, on Monday night. With the win, Denver avenged a Game 2 loss and took a 2-1 series lead.

The Nuggets were led by the one-two punch of Nikola Jokic with 32 points, 21 rebounds, and 10 assists, and Jamal Murray with 34 points, 10 rebounds, and 10 assists for a matching triple-double. It’s the first time in NBA history that both players with a triple-double scored 30 or more points.

Despite the 15-point victory, it wasn’t an easy win for Denver. In the first quarter, the Nuggets struggled against Miami’s stifling defense and were held to 24 points. In the second quarter, the 3-pointers started to fall and the lead grew, and in the third quarter, Jokic put on a one-man show to seal the win.

The decisive quarter of the game was the second quarter. After a back-and-forth second quarter, Denver took the momentum and pulled away. At the center of it all was rookie Christian Brown. Brown came in for Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, who was benched after picking up two fouls, and made an immediate impact. On defense, he effectively guarded Miami ace Jimmy Butler, and on offense, he worked diligently to receive passes from Jokic.

In fast-break situations, he drove the ball himself and set up the offense for easy baskets. Jokic and Murray were the biggest reasons for Denver’s victory. But with Caldwell Pope and Michael Porter Jr. struggling, it was Brown who picked up the slack.

Brown’s final line on the night was 15 points and four rebounds in 19 minutes, and he was highly efficient, making 7 of 8 free throw attempts. His defense and dirty work were a bonus.

In postgame interviews, Denver head coach Mike Malone and the Nuggets’ players praised Brown.

“He’s a winner, his mindset, his defense, his hustle, it helps us a lot,” Jokic said.

Murray added: “His defense, his hustle is great, and he’s playing the right game. His confidence is good. He’s a big part of our rebounding,” Murray said of Brown.

“He’s been confident since we drafted him,” Malone said. He’s a guy who doesn’t play all 48 minutes, but whenever he does, he does his job,” Malone said of Brown.

The Nuggets, who are in the Finals for the first time in franchise history, have taken a commanding lead in the series thanks to Murray and Jokic. Despite their tremendous play, the three-point shooters who are supposed to support them, such as Porter Jr. and Caldwell Pope, have struggled. 메이저사이트

That’s where rookie Brown has come in, and he’s been a huge help to Denver.

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