Jokic has 22 points, 18 rebounds, the Nuggets beat the Thunder 99-95


OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) – Nikola Jokic had 22 points and 18 rebounds to help the Denver Nuggets beat the Oklahoma City Thunder 99-95 on Sunday night.

Austin Rivers scored a season-high 22 points and Jeff Green added 16 points. The Nuggets avenged a 108-94 loss to the Thunder on Dec. 22 in Oklahoma City.

Lu Dort scored 14 points for the Thunder. They have lost four games in a row.

Denver took a 22-4 lead in the first six minutes. The Nuggets shot 52% in the first half to take a 61-49 lead at the break. Rivers scored 14 points in the half.

The Thunder spent most of the third quarter cutting their deficit and eventually took a 75-74 lead over a 3-point Josh Giddey with about two minutes left in the period. Denver led 80-78 going into the fourth quarter.


Oklahoma City rookie Tre Mann snatched the ball from Jokic’s hands, then drove down and found rookie Aaron Wiggins, who took off for a flying right-handed jam that placed the Thunder 93-88 with 4:26 to play.

Rivers had a 3-point pointer and an acrobatic layup on back-to-back possessions to give Denver a 95-93 lead. Oklahoma City trailed 97-95 and could have taken the lead in the last minute, but the 3-point pointer Jeremiah Robinson-Earl missed the game with 32 seconds left. Will Barton of Denver made two free throws with 12.6 seconds left to create the final margin.

ADVICE

Nuggets: Goalkeeper Davon Reed signed a two-way contract and gave up two-way cross Petr Cornelie in a related move. … Passed Oklahoma City 20-9 in first quarter to take a 36-23 lead. … Goalkeeper Facundo Campazzo had one point and eight assists.

Thunder: Eleven Oklahoma City players scored in the first half, but none scored more than six points before the break. … Robinson-Earl scored 12 points, Giddey had 11 points, eight assists and seven rebounds and Darius Bazley added 10 points.

FOLLOWING

Nuggets: At the Los Angeles Clippers on Tuesday.

Tonnerre: In Washington on Tuesday night.

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Follow Cliff Brunt on Twitter: https://twitter.com/CliffBruntAP

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