DENVER- Three games to go and the Nuggets are still making their playoff push as they host Russell Westbrook and the Oklahoma City Thunder for their final home game of the regular season.
The last time that the Nuggets and Thunder met was on January 7th and this Nuggets team has come a long way since then.
In our last meeting, Westbrook had his 17th triple-double of the season with 32 points, 17 boards, and 11 assists. Steven Adams was the second highest score for the Thunder with 16 points, 5 boards, and 2 assists.
The Nuggets were led by Wilson Chandler off of the bench with 24 points, 8 rebounds, and 2 assists. Will Barton, who started in that matchup, had 21 points, 7 rebounds, and 1 assist.
The Nuggets were less than impressive as they only shot 40.4% from the field. OKC shot 48.3% from the field. In that meeting former Nugget Jusuf Nurkic got the start in the absence of Nikola Jokic.
With Emmanuel Mudiay questionable and Jameer Nelson out today, we could be seeing Malik Beasley getting minutes, as he is the only other true point guard left that the Nuggets possess. Denver also needs big games from not just their starting 5, but their bench if they want to be able to pull out a win over OKC.
This afternoons matchup is very important to this team and fans alike because with the Trail Blazers win last night over Utah and a potential loss tonight to OKC, the Nuggets will be eliminated from the playoff race. If the Nuggets want to continue to fight for the eighth, they’ll need to get the big W tonight.
FG%: 46.9 FG%: 45.3
RPG: 46.4 RPG: 46.4
APG: 25.3 APG: 21
Last 10: 5-5 Last 10: 5-5
Keys to the game:
- Ball Movement: In our last meeting, the Nuggets only had 18 assists while OKC had 23. Move the ball and make the smart shot.
- Don’t settle: Don’t settle for shots from the outside. Attack the paint.
- Take advantage of the atmosphere: This is the last game being played in the regular season in Denver before finishing off on the road. Take advantage of the home crowd’s energy.
Emmanuel Mudiay (ankle) questionable
Jameer Nelson (calf) out