Recap: Nuggets lose a tough one in OT to the Cavaliers 119-116

NBA: Denver Nuggets at Cleveland Cavaliers
Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

Gut wrenching loss for the Nuggets tonight

The Denver Nuggets could not make it eight straight road wins as the Cleveland Cavaliers hand them a 119-116 overtime loss. Cleveland’s sold-out crowd was rocking tonight, and they appeared to ignite energy down the stretch. The Nuggets held a 114-109 lead in overtime, but they went five straight possessions without a point with two turnovers. Lauri Markkanen was on fire all night for the Cavs as he dropped 31 points, 10 rebounds, and 4 steals on 6-12 from beyond the arc. Mobley also chipped in 27 points, 11 rebounds, and 6 of those were offensive.

Tonight was such a tough loss because the Mavericks finally lost a game, and a win would have put Denver back just a half a game, but they could not capitalize. Offensive rebounds really hurt Denver late in this one. The Cavs grabbed 15 offensive boards with some critical ones in the 4th and OT. Denver also committed 19 turnovers and had 7 more fouls than Cleveland. The Nuggets will try to shrug this off as they will face another tough Eastern Conference opponent in the Boston Celtics. That game is on Sunday at 6:00 PM MT.

1st Quarter

  • The Nuggets started very quickly with a Jokic layup, but the Cavs scored four in a row by a Mobley lob and an Okoro layup. Barton and Gordon both scored layups, but Garland knocked in a three and Mobley scored another layup for a 9-6 Cavs lead
  • Jokic and Markkanen traded layups, and then Garland found Mobley for a layup and Markkanen for a three on consecutive possessions as the Cavs took a 16-8 advantage
  • Following a Malone timeout, Jokic located Jeff Green for a layup, but the Cavs corralled an offensive rebound resulting in a Markkanen dunk. Two Jeff Green free throws and a Gordon layup cut the lead to four, but Markkanen answered with another three
  • Jokic dished a cross-court pass to Rivers for a corner three, but the Cavs answered again with a Garland triple. Caris LeVert then bounced in a three, but the Nuggets responded with four by Gordon and a three by Hyland to pull within three
  • After two Windler free throws, Bones ended the quarter with a corner three

Score: 31-29 Cavaliers

Scoring leaders: Gordon – 10, Markkanen – 10

2nd Quarter

  • Bones Hyland started the quarter with a bang. He threw a beautiful lob to JaMychal for an aggressive one-handed slam, and then he sank a three along with a transition layup as Denver took a 36-31 lead
  • The Nugget bench had a 15-2 scoring run going, and JaMychal extended it with a corner three. Boogie’s two free throws were Denver’s 15th straight point, but Kevin Love ended the run with a wing three
  • Markkanen dropped in another three to cut Denver’s lead to four and Garland followed with two free throws. Boogie then drilled two threes to extend the lead to eight, 47-39.
  • Gordon and Garland traded baskets, and a Markkanen dunk would force a Malone timeout. Jokic quickly found Jeff Green for a left-handed dunk, and then he scooped in a finger roll layup on the next possession
  • Barton continued the good passing with a dish to Jokic for a floater, but Stevens overpowered Monte to get to the cup on the other end. Denver’s lead was 55-47 until Markannen converted a three-point play
  • After a minute of scoreless basketball, Jokic tipped one in for two. Bones assisted Uncle Jeff for a step-back, fadeaway jumper, and after forcing a Cleveland turnover, Jokic scored a layup. Mobley and Bones both made two free throws to end the quarter

Score: 63-52 Nuggets

Scoring leaders: Markkanen – 18, Jokic/Bones/Gordon – 12

3rd Quarter

  • Gordon and Mobley both scored two to open the quarter. Markkanen kept his hot shooting going with a floater, but Gordon countered with a three-point play off a nifty spin-move layup.
  • Lamar Stevens and Jokic both scored layups as Denver maintained a 10 point lead 70-60. Monte Morris then scooped in a three-footer, but after two straight Denver turnovers, Stevens capitalized with a two-handed slam
  • Denver committed their third straight turnover, and LeVert made them pay with a free-throw line jumper. Barton’s two free throws expanded Denver’s lead back to ten until Garland found Mobley for a layup
  • Jokic scored his 16th point with a floater, and then Garland matched it with his own floater. After a couple of missed shots, Barton swished home his first three of the game. Jokic then converted both free throws to extend the lead to 12 at 81-69
  • Jokic and Garland exchanged layups, and Jokic followed with a tip-in. The Cavs would score five straight with a Markkanen three and a Stevens dunk which cut the lead to 9
  • After a Malone timeout, Forbes sank a mid-range jumper from the corner, and then Mobley converted two free throws

Score: 87-78 Nuggets

Scoring leaders: Markkanen – 23, Jokic – 22

4th Quarter

  • JaMcyhal Green introduced the period with a corner three, and then Boogie completely bullied Mobley for a hook shot in the paint. Mobley responded with a dunk at the other end, and Garland followed with a floater in transition.
  • After three Nugget offensive rebounds, Boogie floated one in for two. Then following a questionable Gordon goaltend, he threw a sweet pass to Bones for a layup, but Mobley quickly answered with a dunk
  • Kevin Love buried a three as the Cavs climbed within seven, 96-89. Following a Denver timeout, Bones sank a mid-range jumper, but Love answered again with another triple.
  • Another Denver turnover resulted in two LeVert free ones which cut the lead to just four. LeVert then drilled a three, but Gordon silenced the crowd with a mid-range jumper. Markkanen dropped in another three to tie it up at 100 and Garland followed with a finger roll layup
  • Jokic tied it back up with a layup and then Uncle Jeff regained the lead 104-102 with two free throws. Love knocked in another three, and after a couple of missed shots, Gordon converted one of two free throws to tie it up at 105
  • Another questionable call sent Markkanen to the line for two of three free throws. After a Cavs turnover, Jokic tied it up at 107 with a floater. The Nuggets had the last shot of the game, but Jokic threw up a prayer and missed which sent it into OT

Score: 107-107

Scoring leaders: Markkanen – 28, Jokic – 26

Overtime

  • Jokic opened the quarter with a floater, but the Cavs responded with a Garland lob to Mobley. On the next possession, Jokic found Barton for a corner three, and then Jokic laid one up for two which gave Denver a 114-109 advantage
  • Mobley sank one of two free throws, and after a Gordon travel, Mobley played bully ball for a layup. After a bad Barton shot, Mobley dunked one home to tie it up at 114.
  • With 40 seconds left, Jokic turned it over and Markkanen made them pay with a three. Out of a timeout, Jokic scored a layup to get within one, but Mobley converted a layup the following possession. Bones had the last shot to tie it up at 119 but it was off right

Score: 119-116 Cavaliers

Scoring leaders: Jokic – 32, Markkanen – 31

Stat leaders

Points: Jokic – 32

Rebounds: Mobley – 11

Assists: Garland – 14

Silent hero of the game: Garland – 25 points, 14 assists, 5 rebounds on 9-20 from the field and 2-4 from three

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