Suns spoil Nikola Jokic’s MVP social gathering, beat Nuggets 116-102

Devin Booker and the Phoenix Suns spoiled Nikola Jokic’s MVP celebration with a 116-102 victory over Denver on Friday night time in Sport 3 that put “The Joker” and the remainder of the reeling Nuggets getting ready to a fast second-round exit

DENVER — Devin Booker and the Phoenix Suns spoiled Nikola Jokic’s MVP celebration with a 116-102 victory over Denver on Friday night time in Sport 3 that put “The Joker” and the remainder of the reeling Nuggets getting ready to a fast second-round exit.

Booker scored 28 factors and teamed with Chris Paul to steer a gentle offensive onslaught that countered Jokic’s triple-double of 32 factors, 20 rebounds and 10 assists.

With their sixth straight victory, the second-seeded Suns took a 3-0 lead within the best-of-seven sequence. Sport 4 is Sunday at Ball Enviornment.

Paul had 27 factors, eight assists and three steals for the Suns, who pulled away after halftime for the third straight time. All 5 Phoenix starters scored in double figures.

They’re a one win away from their first journey to the Western Convention Finals since 2009-10 — which was the final time Phoenix made the playoffs.

Monte Morris scored 21 off the bench for Denver.

The third-seeded Nuggets, who reached the convention finals final 12 months, are getting ready to getting swept in a playoff sequence for the primary time because the Lakers bounced them out of the primary spherical in 2007-08.

Jokic devoted his MVP award to his teammates throughout a raucous pregame ceremony that coach Michael Malone had hoped would energize his crew that is misplaced by 17, 25 and now 14 factors.

The Nuggets first MVP was largely MIA early on because the Suns shot a scorching 74.46% in leaping out to a 37-27 lead after one quarter. Jokic scored seven factors in that quarter however none till the 4:45 mark. He additionally missed two of three free throws.

Malone, who accused his crew of quitting after a blowout loss in Sport 2, mentioned earlier than tip-off that he preferred his crew’s resiliency.

“I don’t know if I’ve ever been round a greater crew that may rise up off the mat, discover a method to get again within the combat and win the combat,” Malone mentioned of his crew that overcame two 3-1 deficits within the bubble final 12 months.

He mentioned all Phoenix did by sweeping the primary two video games within the desert was maintain serve. “So, now we’ve to return the favor,” Malone mentioned, “and make this a sequence.”

They could not, and now the Suns can sweep them proper out of the postseason.

TIP-INS:

Suns: Phoenix led by double digits a lot of the primary half however went chilly over the ultimate 90 seconds of the second quarter, permitting the Nuggets to tug to 59-55 at halftime. … The Suns shot 50% within the first half each from past the arc and from the sector, they usually made all 11 of their free throws.

Nuggets: The Nuggets missed their first seven photographs after halftime, sapping them of the momentum they took into the break by closing on a 6-0 run. … Michael Porter Jr., who tweaked his again within the sequence opener, had one other robust time, taking pictures 5 for 13 from the ground for 15 factors. Will Barton added 14 in his second sport again from a hamstring damage.

FAMOUS FANS

The most important crowd at Ball Enviornment because the pandemic started included Denver Broncos tight finish Noah Fant, guard Dalton Risner and kicker Brandon McManus wasn’t talked about together with the opposite two once they had been proven on the massive display screen. However within the second half, the cameras got here again to him and he placed on a present by chugging a few beers for cheers.

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Extra AP NBA: https://apnews.com/hub/NBA and https://twitter.com/AP—Sports activities

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