The Denver Nuggets avoided elimination with a fighting 117-107 win over the Utah Jazz in game five of their NBA first round play-off series on Tuesday.
Led by Jamal Murray’s 42 points, the Nuggets pulled the series scoreline back to 3-2, with game six set for Thursday.
Denver were staring an elimination when trailing 63-54 at half-time, but Murray stepped up to lead his side’s resurgence.
Having scored only nine points in the first half, the 23-year-old Canadian scored 33 more in the second, making 17 of 26 shots and contributing eight assists, including scoring nine points straight after the scores were tied 101-101 to help Denver pull away.
Too clutch. pic.twitter.com/zyWGHakaCZ
— Denver Nuggets (@nuggets) August 26, 2020
Nikola Jokic had 31 points for the Nuggets, keeping his team in the hunt by scoring 21 of them in the first quarter.
Donovan Mitchell scored 30 points for the Jazz and is averaging 37.6 points for the series, while Jordan Clarkson and Mike Conley Jnr had 17 points apiece.
The Los Angeles Clippers rebounded from their overtime loss on the buzzer in game four to crush the Dallas Mavericks 154-111 and take a 3-2 lead in their series.
KAWHI INCOMING. pic.twitter.com/KaMRaqPFXo
— LA Clippers (@LAClippers) August 26, 2020
The Clippers were determined to ensure this game was not as close as the last, blasting away to lead 41-22 at quarter time and 76-52 at the half.
Paul George, conspicuously out of form in the first four games of the series, finally clicked into gear with 35 points, Kawhi Leonard had 32, and Montrezl Harrell had 19 and 11 rebounds,
Luka Doncic could not quite repeat his heroics of game four but led the Mavs with 22 points, while Tim Hardaway Jnr had 19.
Game six will take place on Thursday.