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Porter, Jokic too much as Nuggets roar past Spurs

EditorsNote: Grammatical corrections (Graf 4); changed Spurs' run to 10-0 (Graf 7); other minor edits

Michael Porter Jr. scored 30 points and pulled down a career-high 15 rebounds, and Nikola Jokic added 25 points and 11 assists as the Denver Nuggets defeated the San Antonio Spurs 132-126 on Wednesday afternoon at the VISA Athletic Center near Orlando.

The win allowed Denver (45-23) to climb to within a half-game of the LA Clippers for second place in the Western Conference standings.

The Spurs (29-38), who have lost two straight, remained in 10th place in the West and two games behind Memphis (which lost to Utah earlier in the day) in the race for the eighth and final playoff spot in the conference.

The game was tied at 97 with 8:49 to play but Denver's flowing inside-out attack was too much for the Spurs to handle down the stretch. The Nuggets took charge with Jokic hitting a bucket and dishing out three assists in a two-minute stretch which led to a 114-105 Denver lead.

Jerami Grant added 22 points for Denver with Monte Morris hitting for 19 and PJ Dozier scoring 12 for the Nuggets.

Rudy Gay paced San Antonio with 24 points. Derrick White added 23, Keldon Johnson scored 20, DeMar DeRozan poured in 18, and Patty Mills and Drew Eubanks scored 14 and 12 points, respectively.

Denver led for the majority of the first quarter helped by an early 12-0 run before the Spurs rallied to tie the game thanks in part to a 10-0 run of their own. The Nuggets scored six of the period's final eight points and were up 32-28 after 12 minutes of play.

The Spurs led 65-62 at halftime after back-to-back 3-pointers by Johnson and White at the end of the second quarter. Gay led San Antonio in the first half with 15 points off the bench with White adding 11 and Mills pumping in 10 points.

Porter led Denver with 14 points and seven rebounds while Morris hit for 11 points over the first 24 minutes.

The Spurs jumped in front early in the third quarter, eventually building a nine-point bulge. But Denver responded and tied the game at 89 at the end of the period.

--Field Level Media

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