DENVER — After becoming the only teammates in NBA history with dual 30-point triple-doubles in the NBA Finals, Nikola Jokic and Jamal Murray cemented themselves as one of the better duos in league history at the absolute highest level the league offers.
In a Thursday episode of the Locked On Nuggets podcast, hosts Matt Moore and Adam Mares broke down the performance and what it shows about Jokic and Murray’s combined games.
“Breaking down either of their numbers is absurd, they both were just so brilliant,” Mares said. “They both understood exactly what was required of them given the Heat’s defense, and they were both up for an impossible task.”
Miami has succeeded in slowing down the pace of play and dictating the terms of Denver’s scoring attack. And yet Jokic and Murray took on a bigger burden in Game 3 and still gave the Nuggets a road win to go up 2-1 in the series.
“This to me was the greatest game by Jamal Murray in his career,” Mares said. “What I saw from Jamal Murray was shot-making, decision-making, precision, intensity, emotional commitment, and defense.”
After the Heat moved star wing Jimmy Butler onto the Murray matchup in Game 2, Murray responded by manipulating the help defense and getting downhill aggressively in Game 3.
“Murray deserves the credit we always give Jokic of solving the thing that a team tried to do,” Mares said. “In Game 3, he solved it, and that’s why they won.”
Together, Jokic and Murray combined for 59 percent of the Nuggets’ points, 53 percent of their rebounds, and 71 percent of the team’s assists.
“Jamal and Joker put the Nuggets into a spot where they increased their margin for error,” Moore said.