Empowering Communities, Celebrating Minnesota Locally

Nuggets bounce back with 117-90 blowout of Timberwolves behind 24 points from energized Murray

MINNEAPOLIS – The Denver Nuggets exhibited sheer determination, experience, pride, and talent, refusing to let their stumble in the first two games define their series against the surging Minnesota Timberwolves. This is what defending NBA champions do – they silence raucous crowds, embrace the boos, and seize momentum right back.

Jamal Murray bounced back from a challenging start to the Western Conference semifinals with 24 points, leading the Nuggets to a commanding 117-90 victory in Game 3, making the Timberwolves the last team in the NBA to suffer a loss this postseason. Nikola Jokic, the three-time league MVP, contributed 24 points, 14 rebounds, and nine assists, while Michael Porter Jr. added 21 points, as the Nuggets narrowed Minnesota’s series lead to 2-1, fueled by their impressive 14-for-29 shooting from beyond the arc.

Despite Anthony Edwards’ quiet 19 points leading the Wolves, who struggled from deep, going just 10 for 32, including Karl-Anthony Towns’ 4-for-5 effort, they couldn’t muster enough offensive firepower. Towns, with 14 points, didn’t receive enough opportunities, and the Wolves fell behind by as much as 34 points, playing slower than their pace in the first two games.

Taking responsibility for the loss, Edwards admitted his lack of energy and vowed to bounce back for the next game. The Nuggets became the 30th team in NBA playoffs history to overcome losing the first two games at home in a best-of-seven series, a testament to their resilience.

Murray, who struggled in the initial games, found his rhythm, showcasing a mix of spot-up jumpers and fadeaways, benefiting from Jokic and Aaron Gordon’s facilitation. The Nuggets’ energy returned, complemented by improved shooting, breaking the 100-point barrier against Minnesota’s formidable defense for the first time in three games.

The Wolves, after sweeping Phoenix and dominating Denver initially, faced a reality check, abandoning the premature “Wolves in 4!” chant. The Nuggets controlled the game from the start, building a significant lead early on and maintaining it throughout.

Despite the return of NBA Defensive Player of the Year Rudy Gobert for the Wolves, the Nuggets’ ball movement rendered his defensive prowess ineffective. Timely three-pointers from Gordon and Porter further extended Denver’s lead, frustrating the Wolves and their fans.

As the game neared its end, frustrated Wolves reserves received technical fouls for disputing calls, highlighting their mounting frustration. Ultimately, the Nuggets’ determined performance reclaimed their momentum and set the stage for a compelling series ahead.