Nikola Jokic continues to show why he could have, and perhaps should have, won his third straight MVP award.
The Joker went for the first 30-20-10 effort in NBA Finals history in the Denver Nuggets’ 109-94 win over the Miami Heat on Wednesday.
With the victory, Denver took a two games to one lead in the NBA Finals as the franchise competes for its first championship in its history.
Neither team led by more than five points in the first half, but Denver opened the third quarter on a 6-0 run to take the first double-digit lead of the night, and they made sure it didn’t give up.
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They were able to extend that lead to 19 points in that quarter, and they got to 21 in the fourth. Miami had a late streak that cut its deficit to nine, but it was too little too late.
Jokic’s historic night ended with 32 points, 21 rebounds and 10 assists.
Jamal Murray also posted a triple-double: he led all scorers with 34 points while grabbing 10 rebounds (his 10th with five seconds remaining) and dishing out 10 assists.
Jokic and Murray are the first teammates in NBA history to have 30-point triple-doubles in the same game, even in the regular season.
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Only two Heat players were in double digits. Jimmy Butler finished with 28 points, while Bam Adebayo added 22 points and 17 boards. The rest of the team combined to score just 44 points.
As a team, Denver shot 51.2% from the ground. Miami made just 37.0% of their shots.
Game 4 is Friday night in Miami.
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With a loss, Miami will try to become the first team since the 2015-16 Cleveland Cavaliers to win the Finals after trailing 3-1 in the series.