Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic (15) aims to score as Miami Heat guard Max Strus (31) defends during the first half of Game 3 of the NBA Finals basketball game, Wednesday, June 7, 2023, in Miami. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)

Jokic and Murray Lead Nuggets Past Heat in Game 3 of NBA Finals

Wednesday, Nikola Jokic and Jamal Murray of the Denver Nuggets made history by becoming the first pair of teammates to record a triple-double in the NBA Finals. The Miami Heat had no answer for the duo, falling 109-94 to Denver. The Nuggets now hold a 2-1 series lead over the Heat and will look to go up 3-1 in the series on Friday.

Jokic Makes History of his Own

Not only did Jokic and Murray team up to make history, but the Joker made history of his own, recording 30 points, 21 rebounds and 10 assists. He became the first player in NBA Finals history to have a 30-20-10 game.

Murray scored 30 points, getting 10 rebounds and 10 assists to back Jokic on the career night for the two players.

Denver head coach Michael Malone said this was the best performance the duo has had together with the Nuggets.

Heat Struggle with Rebounds

After coming back to get a Game 2 win in Denver on Sunday, Miami had hopes of using its home court to their advantage. However, the team struggled with rebounds all night, getting outrebounded 58-33. Three Denver players recorded 10+ rebounds in Jokic, Murray and Aaron Gordon. Gordon also added 11 points.

After a close first half, which saw the Nuggets lead 53-48 at the end of the second quarter, Miami was dominated in the second half.

Murray said the whole team chipped in on the glass, allowing the Nuggets to work efficiently in the third and fourth quarter.

Star Players Shine

Miami’s Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo had impressive performances. However, it was a different story for the rest of the team. Butler scored 28 points while Adebayo had 22 points with 17 rebounds. Other than the two stars, one player had over nine points. Besides Butler and Adebayo, the Heat’s starting lineup scored just 16 points. Additionally, Miami scored 28 points off the bench.

If Erik Spoelstra’s squad wants to get back in this series, Butler and Adebayo will need help, and they’ll need Gabe Vincent and Caleb Martin to play like they did in the Eastern Conference Finals.

Game 4 will be played on Friday in Miami at 8:30 p.m.

About Megan Blankenship

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