Jokic scores 41, Nuggets miss opportunity to clinch

2022-04-06T10:01:30+00:00 2022-04-06T10:10:01+00:00.

Giannis Askounis

06/Apr/22 10:01

Eventful NBA evening including Nikola Jokic and the Denver Nuggets

By Eurohoops Team/

Among the multiple teams clinching a berth in the Play-Ins or the Playoffs, the San Antonio Spurs stunned the Denver Nuggets, 116-97, to make the Western Conference Play-Ins on Tuesday. Serbian superstar Nikola Jokic went for 41 points, 17 rebounds, four assists, and two steals but was not enough for the home side to punch in a direct ticket to the Playoffs and complete the postseason picture across both Conferences. Slovenian teammate Vlatko Cancar (right foot surgery) remains on the injury list. On the opposite end, Austrian Jakob Poeltl registered 14 points, eight rebounds, and three assists.

The Milwaukee Bucks routed the Chicago Bulls, 127-106, to secure the fourth straight Central Division title. Greek Giannis Antetokounmpo chipped in 18 points, nine rebounds, and seven assists in a 24-minute showing. From the bench, Georgian Sandro Mamukelashvili banked in a three-pointer and Thanasis Antetokounmpo had two points, but Serge Ibaka did not play. For the hosts, Montenegrin Nikola Vucevic was held to seven points, six rebounds, three assists, and one steal. Fellow Montenegrin Marko Simonovic suited up but did not log playing time.

French Jaylen Hoard registered a 24-point, 21-rebound double-double powering the Oklahoma City Thunder to the 98-94 victory against the Portland Trail Blazers. Greek Giorgos Kalaitzakis added 17 points, Czech Vit Krejci had 11 points, and French Olivier Sarr posted a 10-point, 12-rebound double-double with Serbian Aleksej Pokusevski and French Theo Maledon among multiple players kept out of action. Bosnian Jusuf Nurkic (left foot) has been on the Blazers‘ injury list since late February and will not return during the 2021-22 season.

German Franz Wagner returned to action but lasted only seven minutes before spraining his right ankle. He put in two points for the Orlando Magic in the win, 120-115, over Cleveland Cavaliers, 120-115. His brother Moritz scored ten of his 15 points in the fourth quarter. Lithuanian Ignas Brazdeikis logging a season-high 20 points helped as well. For the Cavs, Finnish Lauri Markkanen got to 25 points behind 7/16 field goals and Turkish Cedi Osman had 11 points in 15 minutes.

The Playoff spot was secured by the Utah Jazz after the overtime win, 121-115, versus the Memphis Grizzlies. French Rudy Gobert produced a huge 22-point, 21-rebound double-double, while Croatian Bojan Bogdanovic threw in 13 points, four rebounds, three steals, and two assists. Spanish Juancho Hernangomez did not enter the court. Staying on the Grizzlies bench were both Spanish Santi Aldama and French Yves Pons with French Killian Tillie (left knee soreness) ruled out.

Latvian Kristaps Porzingis dropped 25 points along with eight rebounds, one assist, and one block as the Washington Wizards claimed a comfortable win on the road, 132-114, against the Minnesota Timberwolves. Checking in off the bench, Israeli Deni Avdija lasted 36 minutes and generated 17 points, eight rebounds, five assists, two blocks, and one steal. Czech started Tomas Satoransky added eight points, seven assists, and two rebounds over 20 minutes.

Without Lithuanian Jonas Valanciunas (right ankle soreness), the New Orleans Pelicans beat the Sacramento Kings, 123-109, to clinch a berth in the Play-Ins. Spanish Willy Hernangomez started and posted a 12-point, 12-rebound double-double alongside three assists and one block in 26 minutes. Portuguese Neemias Queta recorded five points and four rebounds for the losing side with Lithuanian Domantas Sabonis (left knee) and Ukrainian Alex Len (back) on the injury list.

British OG Anunoby (left thigh) missed his second straight game but the Toronto Raptors beat the Atlanta Hawks and clinched a playoff berth. German Isaac Bonga (right foot) was sidelined as well. Ukrainian Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk did not play. The visitors missed Italian Danilo Gallinari (left knee) but featured Serbian Bogdan Bogdanovic at 19 points, Swiss Clint Capela producing a 10-point, 14-rebound double-double, and French Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot with seven points.

Slovenian Goran Dragic (health and safety protocols) was not available as Kyrie Irving’s 42 points propelled the Brooklyn Nets to the win, 118-105, versus the Houston Rockets. Turkish Alperen Sengun posted a 14-point, 11-rebound double-double plus five assists and one block for the Rockets, while Spanish Usman Garuba logged two points, five rebounds, two assists, and one block, and German Dennis Schroder (left shoulder) stayed on the injury list.

Danish Gabriel Lundberg settled for a fruitless brief outing and Croatian Dario Saric (right knee) remained sidelined as the Phoenix Suns rolled the Los Angeles Lakers, 121-110, and knocked them out of contention for a place in the Play-Ins. Devin Booker stood out with 32 points in the franchise-record 63rd victory of the Regular Season.

The streaking Miami Heat all but clinched the top seed of the Eastern Conference after blowing out the Charlotte Hornets, 144-115. Turkish reserve Omer Yurtseven made out three points, seven rebounds, and one steal over 15 minutes. Lithuanian two-way player Arnoldas Kulboka once again was on a G League assignment at the Greensboro Swarm.

Joel Embiid had 45 points leading the Philadelphia 76ers to the win, 131-122, opposite the Indiana Pacers. Turkish teammate Furkan Korkmaz was not part of the rotation at Gainbridge Fieldhouse. Both Georgian Goga Bitadze (right foot) and Spanish Ricky Rubio (left knee) were sidelined by the Pacers.

Tuesday results:

Indiana Pacers – Philadelphia 76ers 122-131
Orlando Magic – Cleveland Cavaliers 120-115
Brooklyn Nets – Houston Rockets 118-105
Miami HeatCharlotte Hornets 144-115
Toronto RaptorsAtlanta Hawks 118-108
Chicago BullsMilwaukee Bucks 106-127
Minnesota TimberwolvesWashington Wizards 114-132
Oklahoma City Thunder – Portland Trail Blazers 98-94
Denver NuggetsSan Antonio Spurs 97-116
Utah Jazz – Memphis Grizzlies 121-115 OT (110-110)
Sacramento KingsNew Orleans Pelicans 109-123
Phoenix SunsLos Angeles Lakers 121-110


Eastern Conference
1. y-Miami Heat 52-28
2. y-Boston Celtics 49-30
3. y-Milwaukee Bucks 49-30
4. y-Philadelphia 76ers 49-30
5. y-Toronto Raptors 46-33
6. y-Chicago Bulls 45-34
7. p-Cleveland Cavaliers 43-37
8. p-Brooklyn Nets 41-38
9. p-Atlanta Hawks 41-38
10. p-Charlotte Hornets 40-39
11. x-Washington Wizards 35-44
12. x-New York Knicks 35-44
13. x-Indiana Pacers 25-55
14. x-Detroit Pistons 23-56
15. x-Orlando Magic 21-59

Western Conference
1. y-Phoenix Suns 63-16
2. y-Memphis Grizzlies 55-24
3. y-Golden State Warriors 50-29
4. y-Dallas Mavericks 49-30
5. y-Utah Jazz 47-32
6. Denver Nuggets 47-33
7. Minnesota Timberwolves 45-35
8. p-Los Angeles Clippers 39-40
9. p-New Orleans Pelicans 35-44
10. p-San Antonio Spurs 34-45
11. x-Los Angeles Lakers 31-48
12. x-Sacramento Kings 29-51
13. x-Portland Trail Blazers 27-52
14. x-Oklahoma City Thunder 24-55
15. x-Houston Rockets 20-60

y-clinched Playoff berth
p-clinched Play-In berth

Photo Credit: Getty Images