The rivalry between the 2022 and 2023 NBA champions – Golden State Warriors vs Denver Nuggets – had an ending that made fans jump out of their seats.
Entering the final seconds of the fourth quarter, the Warriors and Nuggets were tied at 127-127. It seemed like this competition would go straight to extra time when Nikola Jokic threw an unbelievable throw from near midfield.
The ball went into the basket to bring an emotional buzzer-beater victory to Denver, and at the same time sadness and dismayed faces on Golden State’s side.
Stephen Curry couldn’t believe his eyes after the final whistle sounded. He seemed “frozen” not only by Jokic’s throw but also by the way the Warriors dropped this match.
ESPN’s computer system gave a win rate of up to 99.6% when Golden State led 123-105 (18 points) midway through the fourth quarter, specifically when there were less than 7 minutes left in the fourth quarter.
However, Stephen Curry and his teammates then played unfocused at both ends of the court, leading to the loss of the advantage. They allowed the Denver Nuggets to score 12 consecutive points with a big goal from Aaron Gordon, and at the same time made many mistakes in losing the ball.
Continuing the comeback attempt, Nikola Jokic equalized the score at 127-127 before finishing off Golden State with a buzzer-beater from near midfield.
The game-winner ended Nikola Jokic’s sublime day. He scored 34 points with 10 assists and 9 rebounds, leading the Denver Nuggets to their 6th consecutive away victory.
Behind the reigning Finals MVP is Aaron Gordon with 30 points, 9 rebounds and 2 assists. In the fourth quarter alone, he scored 15 points to contribute greatly to Denver’s comeback.
Peyton Watson and Jamal Murray are the two remaining prominent names on the Nuggets attack, contributing 19 and 25 points respectively. Murray alone had 6 assists, 2 steals and did not have any TOs in 32 minutes of play.
For the Golden State Warriors, Stephen Curry scored 30 points (5-12 3PT), had 6 assists and 4 rebounds. However, the “chef” suffered a disastrous turnover at the end of the fourth quarter, leading to a ball for Denver and a game-winning shot by Jokic.
Klay Thompson (24 points, 4-10 3PT) leads the Warriors’ group of double-digit scoring players including himself, Kuminga, Dario Saric, Andrew Wiggins and young guard Brandin Podziemski.
This bitter defeat left Golden State stagnant in 11th place on the Western rankings, missing the opportunity to take 10th place from the Los Angeles Lakers.
Both the Golden State Warriors and Denver Nuggets will take the field tomorrow morning, playing their second match in two days (back-to-back) at home. The Warriors will host the Detroit Pistons, while the defending champion Nuggets will face the Orlando Magic.