Nikola Jokic made the tiebreaking basket with 27 seconds left and the Denver Nuggets advanced to the second round of the playoffs by the slimmest of margins, beating the Utah Jazz 80-78 in Game 7 on Tuesday night when Mike Conley’s 3-pointer spun out at the buzzer.
The Nuggets became the 12th team in NBA history to overcome a 3-1 deficit to win a series, but only after they blew a 19-point lead in this game.
After Jokic’s basket, the Jazz got the ball to Donovan Mitchell following a timeout. The Nuggets stole it from him and raced down for a fast break, but Torrey Craig missed the layup. Utah rebounded and pushed the ball up the floor to Conley, whose jumper looked good all the way until it fell out.
Jokic had 30 points and 14 rebounds and Jamal Murray scored 17 points. No. 3 seed Denver advanced to face the second-seeded Los Angeles Clippers in the Western Conference semifinals.
Donovan Mitchell scored 22 points and Rudy Gobert finished with 19 points and 18 rebounds after a huge second half for the Jazz.