Nikola Jokic strikes vs. Raptors with triple-double

Annette Crawford
December 6, 2018

Jokic capped a big night with three free throws in the final seven seconds, Kyle Lowry missed a 3-pointer at the buzzer and the Nuggets survived the loss of leading scorer Gary Harris to beat the Toronto Raptors 106-103 on Monday night.

Jamal Murray added 21 points for the Nuggets, and Juancho Hernangomez and Malik Beasley had 15 each.

Kawhi Leonard scored 27 points, Serge Ibaka had 15 and Pascal Siakam added 14 for the Raptors, which shot 11 for 41 from downtown.

In the end, the Nuggets won their sixth straight and interrupted Toronto's eight-game winning streak. That put Denver back up by four, and prompted the outraged crowd to chant "Ref you suck!" The play from Jokic was key in the Nuggets taking a 59-47 lead into the halftime locker room as Denver outscored Toronto 32-23 in the second quarter.

The Nuggets struggled to begin the fourth quarter though as they started just 1-of-9 shooting from the field and allowed Toronto to cut the deficit to 89-88 with 7:40 left in the game. Trailing by a point with two minutes to play, Leonard air-balled a three-point attempt, but made up for it with a long jumper - and a double fist pump in celebration - on the Raptors' next trip down the floor. A Leonard jumper with 54 seconds remaining made the score 101-100 in favor of Toronto and gave the Raptors their first lead of the second half.

Julius Randle had 37 points, but the New Orleans Pelicans fell to the Los Angeles Clippers 129-126, with Tobias Harris sinking two free throws at the death to secure the win.

The Raptors shot a awful 2-for-12 from three-point range in the first quarter, but still managed to keep it close.

Denver led 27-24 after the first quarter after going ahead with an 8-0 run. Among their next dozen opponents are Milwaukee, the L.A. Clippers, Golden State, the Nuggets again but in Denver, and Indiana.

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