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Just like that, it’s over. The Nuggets’ dream season ended Sunday afternoon at Pepsi Center at the hands of C.J. McCollum. McCollum finished with 37 points, eight rebounds and nine assists as the Trail Blazers won 100-96. The Nuggets got out to a 29-17 lead but in typical Game 7 fashion, Portland worked itself back into the game behind McCollum.…...

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The Nuggets could only hold Damian Lillard down for so long. Lillard looked tired and a bit annoyed at Denver’s pesky defense that focused in on him with great precision over the first five games of the Nuggets and Trail Blazers’ second-round matchup, but Portland’s All-Star point guard channeled those frustrations into his best game of the series Thursday night.…...

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In the second quarter, Jamal Murray stood on the right side of the floor and sized up his prey. Murray was cooking by that point, getting all sorts of leaners and runners from awkward angles to go down. Murray jab stepped, rose up and fired a 3 in Damian Lillard’s face. It fell through the net, one of the final…...

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Playoff hockey brings a different feel to the arena. Every shift matters, every puck bounce could change the game, every little detail on the ice could mean the difference between winning and losing. In elimination games, that feeling is amplified by a hundred. Or a thousand. Or a million. It feels like life and death, like every day of practice…...

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PORTLAND — The boos rained down all game, oh did they ever, and 48 hours after he played 65 minutes in the Nuggets’ Game 3 loss, Nikola Jokic propelled his team to another playoff win. Jokic, who was the center of some controversy in Portland after Trail Blazers coach Terry Stotts thought the Nuggets’ big man’s box out on Enes Kanter…...

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PORTLAND — The game was getting away from the Nuggets in the third quarter. Thanks to some more cold shooting on par with Denver’s Game 2 performance, the Trail Blazers stretched their to as many as 10 points. Then Nikola Jokic took over. Denver’s star big man started to cook immediately out of a timeout. He had it going inside…...

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In a lot of ways, Erik Johnson has been Avalanche hockey. Maddeningly inconsistent at times, tantalizingly talented, and perpetually on the verge of putting it all together and ascending to new heights but never quite actually getting there and wondering if that day will ever come. Yes, it’s easy to look at Johnson’s time as a leader and member of…...

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Jamal Murray found himself wide open from the top of the 3-point arc with a little under four minutes remaining. He rose, fired, and after rattling around the rim for a few moments, the ball gently fell through the rim as the Nuggets trimmed the Trail Blazers’ lead to seven points. Murray exhaled, looked towards Pepsi Center’s ceiling and ran…...

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If certain parts of Game 7 between the Nuggets and Spurs “set basketball back” for the lack of shotmaking, as Gregg Popovich put it Saturday, Denver’s second-round opener against Portland on Monday showed what makes the modern game great: so much skill everywhere. The Nuggets and Trail Blazers both came out firing; each shot 52% in the first half. Denver,…...

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The lights were bright. The stage was international. The building was packed. The tension in the final moments before Game 7 between the Nuggets and Spurs tipped off? Palpable. And just as he has throughout the first six games of Denver’s first-round series, Nikola Jokic seized the moment. Jokic was magnificent in his first career Game 7, leading Denver to…...

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SAN ANTONIO — Nikola Jokic came to play in the first closeout game of his career. The Nuggets’ star center was in one of those zones where you could blindfold him 10 feet from the hoop, spin him around three times and he’d still find a way to flip in the shot. Jokic was brilliant in Game 6 Thursday, but…...

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As the Spurs whittled down the Nuggets’ lead, which was at one point 27 midway through the third quarter, to 18 later in the period, Pepsi Center got tense for the first time since the opening minutes of Game 5. Naturally, the ball found Nikola Jokic’s hands on back-to-back possessions. Two high-arching 3s later, Denver’s lead was back to a…...

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SAN ANTONIO — The shots are finally falling. In Game 1, 3-point shooting doomed the Nuggets as they lost home-court advantage. They’ve progressively gotten better on the offensive end, though, and in Game 4, they buried the Spurs under an avalanche of 3s. Torrey Craig hit five deep balls, and Jamal Murray and Will Barton hit three a piece as Denver…...

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They don’t call them growing pains because they feel good. When the Avalanche last won a playoff series, Jose Theodore was backstopping them past the Minnesota Wild, who was were still in just their seventh season of existence. Nobody really knew at the time Colorado was on the verge of collapsing into irrelevance in the NHL for the next decade.…...

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DENVER – On a night when Kyle Freeland recaptured his brilliance at home and the Rockies took down the team with the best record in the National League, it was the return of Ryan McMahon that fans talked about as they exited the park. Freeland was wheelin’ and dealin’ when he took the mound Thursday night, setting the tone for…...

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Do you think Derrick White likes playing the Nuggets? The Colorado kid who played his college ball at the University of Colorado-Colorado Springs before transferring to CU-Boulder for his senior year had been the best player through the first two games of the Spurs’ first-round series matchup against White’s hometown Nuggets. That trend continued in Game 3 as White scorched…...

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From pumpkin to prince. A week ago, Mikko Rantanen was skating around on his own wearing an orange non-contact jersey and the world wondering whether or not he’d be healthy for the playoffs. The Avalanche had managed to clinch their postseason berth with Rantanen on the shelf after he suffered an undisclosed injury against the Dallas Stars on March 21.…...

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It got so ugly, the boo birds came out. In a must-win Game 2, the Nuggets fell behind by as many as 19 points. They looked cooked. Jamal Murray, playing about as poorly as possible through three quarters, looked shaken. But in the fourth quarter, Murray came alive, and the Nuggets pulled off an improbable come-from-behind win to even the…...

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For a brief moment, the lid came off Denver’s basket. Will Barton swished a 3 off a kick-out from Nikola Jokic early in the third quarter to trim the Spurs’ lead to five. Then Barton followed with a driving finger roll, briefly reenergizing a crowd that had gone quiet amidst the Nuggets’ 3-point struggles. But Denver’s basket sealed itself shut…...

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The Game 82 sequel was a lot more meh than the original — at least at the start. It took until the end against the Minnesota Timberwolves for the fireworks to flare. The Nuggets played like there were no stakes involved for most of the game but roared back late to close the game on a 15-0 run and beat Minnesota…...

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