DENVER showcased its depth and took advantage of a weary, depleted Jazz team to come out with a 105-91 win at the Pepsi Center on Sunday (Monday, Manila time)
The Nuggets surrendered the first basket but pulled away at the end of the first quarter with an 11-3 run and never looked back, building a 19-point lead at the four-minute mark of the second period before the Jazz trimmed the gap down to 12 at the break, 53-41.
Denver continued to dominate in the second half, with the potent inside-outside game between Wilson Chandler and Jusuf Nurkic in the third and some hot-shooting from Jamal Murray in the fourth quarter, as the Nuggets built their biggest lead at 20 and preserved the double-digit lead until the final buzzer.
Murray and Chandler both came off the bench, combined for five triples, and finished with 18 and 17 points, respectively. Nurkic had a double-double of 16 markers and 11 boards for the Nuggets, who improved to 5-8. Three other players scored in double figures for Denver as Danilo Gallinari had 13, Nikola Jokic added 12, and Emmanuel Mudiay chipped in 10.
The Jazz, still without injured starters Derrick Favors and George Hill, played their 15th game, most in the NBA and fell to their fourth straight loss. Gordon Hayward led Utah, now at 7-8, with 25 points, while Joe Johnson, Dante Exum and Rodney Hood each had 10 apiece.