The Los Angeles Lakers certainly hoped that they could pull off an upset win in the series opener against their nemesis, the defending champion Denver Nuggets.

After losing eight-straight games to the Nuggets dating from last year’s playoffs and the 2023-24 regular season, the Lakers seemed like they were on a good start after building an early 12-point lead.

Unfortunately for them, the script stayed the same. By the end of the first half, the Nuggets had already cut the deficit to just 60-57.

A 32-18 third quarter flipped the lead for the Nuggets who never relinquished it. After all the smoke cleared, the champs had taken away an important 114-103 victory and pushed their run of consecutive wins against the Lakers to 9-0.

As usual, Denver were led by Nikola Jokic, who ended the game with 32 points, 12 rebounds, seven assists and two steals with no turnovers.


Jamal Murray had a solid night too with 22 points, six rebounds, 10 assists and a block. He struggled from the field while shooting 9 of 24 overall but hit the shots when they mattered.

Aaron Gordon, as usual, did a little bit of everything against the Lakers with 12 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists. 

Michael Porter Jr. had 19 points and eight rebounds to help too, while Kentavious Caldwell-Pope rounded out the double-digit scoring for all starters with 12 points and three steals.

At this point, LeBron James must be dreaming of a way to get Jokic to stop playing basketball. James had 27 points, six rebounds, eight assists, a steal and a block.

Anthony Davis also had 32 points, 14 rebounds, five assists and four blocks in the losing effort.