After not being able to win a single game against the Suns in the last playoffs, the Nuggets have started the new season with their revenge. Malone’s men took the victory of the Footprint Center by 98-110, starting the course on the right foot and showing that, despite being the forgotten in many pools, they still have a lot to say. Phoenix, meanwhile, offered a rather gray version, which made them fall short when it came to fighting the game in the second half.
And it is that those of Monty Williams did not find inspired not even their two stars. Chris Paul, with 15 points and 10 assists, did not sign a bad game, but he missed a step forward on his part before the mistake of Devin Booker, who could not go beyond 12 goals. The guard signed a poor 3/15 in the shot that weighed heavily on his team, who missed his ability to solve difficult situations with the basket.
In this context, it was Mikal Bridges, with 16 points, who finished as the top scorer for Arizona’s team, while DeAndre Ayton also reached 15. However, it was not enough to compensate for the low contribution of the reference men and even from other secondaries (Jae Crowder for example did not make a single shot), which caused the Suns to sink in a second half in which the set was 40-59 for the visitors. Of course, the Nuggets reminded them that it will not be easy to repeat what they accomplished a few months ago.
Jokic is still in dominant version
The current MVP has returned wanting to remember why he was voted the best player in the competition last season. With 27 points and 13 rebounds, the Serbian was the best player of the match and was in charge of leading his team towards the first win of the year, something he did, surprisingly, with more losses (3) than assists (2). However, his scoring ability was too much for the Suns, who found no way to reduce their impact near the rim and ended up succumbing.
The best squire of the pivot was Will Barton, who with 20 points, 6 rebounds and 5 assists started the new course showing that he is capable of justifying his renewal and helping to forget Jamal Murray until the Canadian is recovered. His four triples gave the Nuggets air at various points in the game, as did Michael Porter Jr.’s 15 points, which was restrained but effective, as he shot 10 times with a 60% accuracy and helped the visitors to imposed in the second half.
“It’s a great way to start the season,” said Malone, happy to have beaten the reigning champions of the West on the court. However, he soon made it clear that there is a lot of work ahead. But this is just one game. We have 81 left to play ».
(Cover photo: C. Morgan Engel / Getty Images)