MANILA, Philippines – Nikola Jokic turned up big as the Denver Nuggets crushed the Portland Trail Blazers, 124-98, to take a 3-2 series lead in the NBA Western Conference semifinals on Tuesday, May 7 (Wednesday, May 8, Manila time).
Jokic unloaded 25 points, 19 rebounds and 6 assists to power the Nuggets within a win of securing their first conference finals berth since 2009.
“The rebounding game huge is for us the whole series,” said Jokic of the Nuggets, who hauled down 62 boards to the Blazers’ 44.
Denver forward Paul Millsap also came out stellar to finish with 24 points, 8 rebounds, 2 assists and a couple of blocks.
“He was huge for us,” Jokic said of Millsap. “He set the tone offensively and defensively.”
Nikola Jokic's 25 PTS, 19 REB & 6 AST and Paul Millsap's 24 PTS & 8 REB propel the @nuggets to a Game 5 victory, taking a 3-2 series lead! #MileHighBasketball #NBAPlayoffs Game 6: Thursday (5/9), 10:30pm/et, ESPN pic.twitter.com/ZivPv5Zu4Z — NBA (@NBA) May 8, 2019
The Nuggets had the game in control by the 2nd quarter, turning a manageable 45-38 deficit into a 17-point gap, 58-41, after a 13-3 spurt.
Jamal Murray delivered an all-around game for the Nuggets with 18 points, 9 assists, 5 rebounds and a block, while Garry Harris also chipped in 16 points and 6 boards.
Damian Lillard paced the Blazers with 22 points as Rodney Hood and Zach Collins scored 14 each.
The Nuggets aim to wrap up the series in Game 6 on Thursday in Portland. – Rappler.com