Monday, March 27, 2023
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NBA Preview: Brooklyn Nets (38-29) at Denver Nuggets (46-21)

The Denver Nuggets were virtually untouchable with the top seed in the Western Conference less than a week ago.

Denver, the best team in the West, appeared to be on track to consolidate its position after winning its first two games against teams with a losing record, but a moment of humility followed.

The Nuggets lost to a San Antonio team that is 32 games below.500 after losing to Chicago on Wednesday night, snapping an eight-game home winning streak.

Denver plays the Brooklyn Nets at home on Sunday afternoon, snapping a two-game losing streak.

The fact that Nikola Jokic recorded yet another triple-double during the Spurs’ 128-120 defeat may have been the most surprising aspect of the game. Denver had been 25-0 this season when the double cross MVP gets a triple-twofold yet couldn’t haul it out in spite of his 37 places, 11 bounce back and 11 helps.

Against the Spurs, the Nuggets’ bench was ineffective. That unit was supposed to benefit from the offseason addition of Bruce Brown and the recent signing of Reggie Jackson, but it is still a work in progress.

Denver’s bench was outscored 58-25 on Friday, and it remains an uneasy unit. The gathering was driven into a greater job when Michael Doorman Jr. was launched out in the second from last quarter of Friday’s misfortune.

After beginning the season as a contender to reach the NBA Finals, Brooklyn is attempting to avoid the Eastern Conference play-in tournament. However, as the roster has been reworked, stars Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant, who were expected to lead the team, have been shipped to the West.

The Nets have won four of their last five games, including an overtime thriller against Minnesota on Friday night, despite mixed early results. It is fitting that Mikal Bridges, one of the players acquired in the Durant trade, has been the driving force behind the recent rise.

Bridges has scored 30 points in four of his last five games, including 34 in the victory over the Timberwolves that came with a score of 124-123.

Dinwiddie, who was acquired in the Irving deal from Dallas, has also performed admirably. He has scored in the double digits in each of the last seven games, averaging 20.8 points per game in March.

He is also a good defender, and his block of Mike Conley’s jumper on Friday kept the win.

This is the first of two games between the teams on Sunday. On March 19, the second one will take place in Brooklyn.

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