The Clips were led by Paul George, who scored 32 points, had four boards, and assists with two steals. PG made 12 of his 18 shots from the field, hitting five threes in seven attempts. Unlike previous matches, the superstar forward was looking pretty good.
When looking at the overall flow of the game, the Nuggets were the ones who had the advantage throughout the match. After a very interesting first period, in which both sides changed lead several times, Michael Malone’s team went on a 17-7 run to reach a 55-43 edge in the second.
Clippers’ Patrick Beverley on Nuggets’ Nikola Jokic after Game 3 win: “He presents the same thing Luka Doncic presents: a lot of flailing. He puts a lot of pressure on the referees to make the right calls.” pic.twitter.com/KB7Hs8dTsr
— Ben Golliver (@BenGolliver) September 8, 2020
The boys from LA would respond pretty soon, with 10 unanswered points, and by the end of the halftime, they almost leveled the result. However, the Nuggets were still in control, all the way until the middle of the final sequence.
With 3:51 to go, the Clippers were up one point, 104-103, but with five free throws, plus Lou Williams’ driving layup, they pulled away to 111-103, solving this match.
The Nuggets players were disappointed with the outcome, suggesting that they had a chance to win this one and completely change the momentum of the series. After being called out for flopping, Jokic mentioned that the rivals had 26 free throws, compared to their 10. The Joker himself had four, while Clippers’ centers, Zubac and Harrell, had 17 combined.
However, with Jamal Murray playing below the expected level, it was very hard for them to do so. The young shooting guard had just 14 points, 5-for-17 from the field, with nine assists, and two steals. The lack of his points was a crucial reason for the Nuggets’ loss.
Nikola Jokic was, on the other hand, spectacular with 32 points, 12 boards and 8 dimes, 13-for-24 from the floor. On several occasions, the Serb amazed the fans all around the world with his assists.
Michael Porter Jr. scored 18 buckets and had 10 boards. The youngster demolished Montrezl Harrell with one dunk, which will no doubt be among the best in the playoffs. He could be the X-factor for Denver because MPJ has what it takes to hurt the opponents.
Paul Millsap and Jerami Grant had 11 points each, and Gary Harris added 10.
Kawhi Leonard was all over the floor once again, with 23 points, 14 boards, and 6 assists. The Claw was struggling with three-point shooting, 1-for-6. Marcus Morris Sr. had 12 points, Montrezl Harrell 11 and Lou Williams 10. Clippers were 54.7% from the field, 41-for-75.
Game 4 is Wednesday.