Nuggets roll past Wizards as Nikola Jokic pours in 42

Jan 21, 2024; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Washington Wizards guard Jordan Poole (13) dribbles the ball as Denver Nuggets forward Aaron Gordon (50) and Nuggets center Nikola Jokic (15) defend in the second half at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Nikola Jokic scored 42 points on 15-of-20 shooting and pulled down 12 rebounds, and the visiting Denver Nuggets beat the struggling Washington Wizards 113-104 on Sunday night.

Jokic, who had eight assists, is shooting 74.6 percent from the field in the last 12 games, leading Denver to eight wins in that span.

Michael Porter Jr. and Jamal Murray scored 19 points apiece, Aaron Gordon contributed 11 points and 10 rebounds and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope finished with 10 points for the Nuggets.

Tyus Jones had 15 points and 13 assists, Kyle Kuzma scored 17, Daniel Gafford also scored 15 points and Landry Shamet and Marvin Bagley III added 14 points off the bench for Washington.

Denver led by nine after the first quarter but the Wizards rallied to tie it at 37-all early in the second. The Nuggets led 49-48 with 4:30 left in the period before pulling away.

Gordon had a dunk and a layup, Jokic scored and fed Porter for a dunk and Murray hit a 20-footer in a 13-1 run. Washington cut it to 10 at the half on Bilal Coulibaly's corner 3-pointer at the horn.

Denver stretched the lead to 70-54 on Porter's 3-pointer early in the third but the Wizards hung tough. Gafford scored on a putback, and Kuzma split a pair of free throws before scoring on three straight possessions to cut the deficit to 72-63.

Following a Nuggets timeout, Gordon converted a three-point play and Jokic fed Murray for a basket to kickstart another run. Jokic took over after that, scoring 10 straight Denver points to establish an 89-73 lead.

Shamet ended the quarter by making five free throws to make it 89-78 heading into the fourth.

The Wizards got within nine points twice on Corey Kispert's reverse layup and two free throws. But Murray hit two foul shots and a layup off a steal to give the Nuggets a 103-90 lead with 5:09 left.

Jones hit a floating jumper to make it an 11-point game but Porter and Caldwell-Pope hit back-to-back 3-pointers to put Denver up 109-92, safely ahead for the rest of the way.

--Field Level Media

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