NIKOLA Jokic showed the way as the also-ran Denver Nuggets defeated the Thunder, 111-105, on Wednesday in Oklahoma City (Thursday, Manila time).
The Nuggets used only seven players but managed to overcome a double-digit deficit to beat the Thunder, who fielded 13.
Jokic scored 29 points and Jamal Murray added 27 as the Nuggets wound up in ninth place in the Western Conference with a 40-42 win-loss record.
Malik Beasley scored 17, Mason Plumlee added 16, Darrell Arthur came off the bench to deliver 13 points and Juan Hernangomez chipped in with nine for Denver. Mike Miller went scoreless in 28 minutes of action for the Nuggets.
The Thunder, No. 6 in the Western Conference, still fielded Russell Westbrook for 18 minutes. The triple-double record holder wound up with five points on 2 of 10 shooting.
Jerami Grant came off the bench to score 13, while Taj Gibson also had 13 points for Oklahoma City, which wound up with a 47-35 record.
The Thunder face No. 3 Houston Rockets in the first round.