Denver Nuggets 48-34, 25-16 Away @ Golden State Warriors 53-29, 31-10 Home
[6:30] PM MT
The NBA Playoffs are set and the Denver Nuggets will head to San Fransisco to take on the #3 Golden State Warriors with game 1 scheduled for Saturday night. The last time these two teams faced each other in the postseason was in 2013 where the Nuggets fell to the underdog Warriors 4-2.
This time, it’s the Nuggets playing the role of the “dog” as they barely squeezed into the #6 seed, avoiding the fairly recent play-in game structure. If Denver wants to pull off the upset and avenge their 2013 first round exit, the MVP will have to raise his game even higher. Nikola Jokic became the first player in NBA history to record 2,000 points, 1,000 rebounds and 500 assists in a single season last week against Memphis but as Denver fans know, the Joker cares little for personal accolades. He wants to win. Plane and simple. He’ll be leading his team yet again without 2 of Denver’s best players in Jamal Murray and Michael Porter Jr.
MPJ played a handful of games before being lost for the season due to a back injury while Murray is still feeling things out after tearing his ACL last year. There is a small, very small hope that Murray could surprise fans and show up for game 1 on Saturday but I wouldn’t hold your breath.
The Warriors are hopeful their superstar can return to the lineup after suffering a foot injury a few weeks ago. A confident Steph Curry said he was going to show up for the playoffs and be ready to go. However, his coach, Steve Kerr, is a bit more skeptical about his game 1 return.
“We’ll see how everything goes with Steph next week. There is a chance he could be ready for Game 1, there is a chance he might not,” Kerr told ESPN at the end of last week.
The expectations for the Nuggets aren’t very high heading into the post season as many considered the year a lost cause without Murray and MPJ but thanks to another MVP season by the Joker, there’s still hope they can win another first round series under head coach Michael Malone. Since getting Denver back into the playoffs in 2019, Malone has never lost in the opening round, quite the opposite from his predecessor George Karl who only advanced past the first round once during his time with the Nuggets.
It should be interesting to see how this one plays out. I feel like the Nuggets are playing with house money and they just so happen to have the best card in the deck; Nikola Jokic.