Matthew Stockman/Getty Images
Bruce Brown and Aaron Gordon of the Denver Nuggets celebrate a 94-89 victory over the Miami Heat in Game 5 of the 2023 NBA Finals.
On Monday night, the Denver Nuggets won their first NBA Championship by defeating the Miami Heat 94-89 at Ball Arena in Denver. NBA Finals.
Two-time MVP Nikola Jokic led the way for the Nuggets with one game-high 28 points and 16 rebounds.
“It was a fantastic team effort,” he told ABC after the game. “It was an ugly game. We couldn’t make shots, but in the end, we figured out how to defend.
The Serbian big man was named NBA Finals Most Valuable Player.
Nuggets coach Michael Malone said, “Nikola Jokic is a great man. He’s a great husband, father and son and brother. And on the basketball court he’s proven time and time again that he’s the best player in the NBA. He’s our MVP, we love him, and we’re grateful he’s in a Nuggets uniform.” We are grateful.
Garrett Ellwood/NBAE/Getty Images
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope of the Denver Nuggets drives to the basket against the Miami Heat during Game 5 of the 2023 NBA Finals at Ball Arena on June 12, 2023 in Denver, Colorado.
Denver’s Michael Porter Jr. had 16 points and 13 boards and Jamaal Murray had 14 points.
Jimmy Butler scored 21 points and Bam Adebayo had 20 to lead Miami, which surprised the NBA by making an eight-straight Finals appearance.
Denver struggled from the free throw and 3-point lines, but fell behind by one point, 89-88, with 1:58 left in the contest.
They scored the game’s final six points on a layup by Bruce Brown with 91 seconds left, and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Brown hit free throws in the final minute. Miami couldn’t connect as the Heat attempted several 3-pointers.
The Nuggets won despite going 5-for-28 from 3 and 13-for-23 from the free throw line.
The Nuggets joined the NBA prior to the 1976–1977 season, playing in the NBA for nine seasons beginning in 1967.