Lakers vs Nuggets: Murray Comes Up Big to Keep Nuggets’ Western Conference Title Hopes Alive
Jamal Murray hurt the Los Angeles Lakers big time as he came up big with a little more than two minutes in the final quarter and allowed the Denver Nuggets to stay in contention for the Western Conference title.
The Nuggets bounced back from a heartbreaking Game 2 loss with a 114-106 win and cut the Lakers series lead, 2-1.
Playing brilliant offense the entire night, Murray was not about to concede the game when the Lakers rallied to cut down the Nuggets 20-point lead down to four with just three minutes remaining in the ballgame.
With 2:16 remaining, Murray remained calm and hit a trey to bring up the Nuggets lead to seven points.
As if that was not enough, the 23-year-old guard from Canada pulled up for another shot from beyond the arc to put the Nuggets out of reach at 111-99 with 53 seconds left.
Murray was two rebounds shy of finishing with a triple double after he ended with 28 points, 12 assists and eight rebounds.
Another key player who helped the Nuggets come back into the series and deny the Lakers an easy series was Jerami Grant.
Grant has been playing great defense for the Nuggets but he paired that with a great offense in Game 3 and ended with not only the Nuggets happy but himself as well as he finished with a playoff career-high of 26 points.
Grant, who had his best playoff performance so far in his young NBA career, is just what the Nuggets need to make a difference in this playoff series.
It was acknowledged last season that the Nuggets needed a player who could make an impact on both ends of the court and Grant showed that he could do just that.
If he keeps up with that kind of performance, the Lakers will definitely have an added problem on their hands.
LeBron James, who started one of two rallies for the Lakers, topscored with 30 points, 11 assists and 10 rebounds.
Anthony Davis, who sparked the other rally, had a quite night but still managed to finish with 27 points. He had hit the game-winning trey at the buzzer in Game 2 but seemed to be out of it in Game 3.
Nuggets head coach Michael Malone said that for some reason, they love the bubble. He added that they are not yet ready to go despite many wanting them packing up and going.
Game 3 win has allowed the Nuggets to set a record of erasing two 3-1 deficits in this postseason.
No team in the NBA history has ever come back from a 3-0 deficit.
The Lakers, for their part, had their six-game winning streak snapped as they fell to 10-3 in these playoffs.
The win has given the Nuggets that much needed boost against the Lakers going into Game 4 on Thursday, September 24.
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