Dominant Spurs bounce back to force game 7 with Nuggets - GulfToday

Dominant Spurs bounce back to force game 7 with Nuggets

Basketball

San Antonio Spurs’ LaMarcus Aldridge (12) in action against the Denver Nuggets during Game 6 of the 1st round of the Western Conference Playoffs on Thursday. Agence France-Presse

The San Antonio Spurs weren’t about to go quietly in their first round series with the Denver Nuggets, delivering a dominating 120-103 win on Thursday to force a winner-take all game seven.

The Spurs kept their postseason alive by shooting and rebounding their way to victory in game six at home after losing two straight in the series.

Game seven will be Saturday in Denver, where the second-seeded Nuggets had the best home record in the NBA in the regular season.

LaMarcus Aldridge poured in 26 points and grabbed 10 rebounds, and DeRozan added 25 points as the Spurs, who were the better team off the bench and down the stretch.

Rudy Gay added 19 points for the Spurs. Derrick White and Bryn Forbes scored 13 and 12 points, respectively, for San Antonio, the seventh seed in the West. Nikola Jokic scored 43 points to set a Nuggets’ franchise playoff record in the loss.

The total was a career high for the Serb star. Jokic also grabbed 12 rebounds and recorded nine assists.

Malone said they were hampered by too many careless turnovers. Denver survived the Spurs’ quick start and came back in the second quarter to take a brief 50-47 lead.

San Antonio led by five points to start the fourth, but scored the first eight points of the period to compile a 98-85 lead.

A three-pointer by Forbes as the shot clock ran down with 7:28 to play capped a 15-2 run and pushed the Spurs’ lead to 105-87, and Denver never got closer than 15 points the remainder of the game.

Meanwhile, John Havlicek, a Hall of Famer and the Boston Celtics’ all-time leading scorer, died Thursday in Florida. He was 79.

Havlicek spent all 16 seasons of his NBA career with the Celtics, won eight NBA titles and was selected to the all-star team 13 times.

He had been suffering from Parkinson’s disease.

The Celtics released a statement Thursday, describing Havlicek as “thoughtful and generous” and calling him the perfect team player.

“His defining traits as a player were his relentless hustle and wholehearted commitment to team over self,” a team statement read.

“He was extraordinarily thoughtful and generous, both on a personal level and for those in need, as illustrated by his commitment to raising money for The Genesis Foundation for Children for over three decades through his fishing tournament.”

Agence France-Presse