Nikola Jokic records rare 13-13-13 streak as Nuggets beat Grizz

Nikola Jokic records rare 13-13-13 streak as Nuggets beat Grizz

DENVER — Nikola Jokic had 13 points, 13 rebounds and 13 assists for his second straight triple-double to lead the Denver Nuggets about him Memphis Grizzlies 105-91 on Tuesday night in a matchup between the top two teams in the Western Conference.

Jokic followed suit 40 points, 27 rebounds and 10 assists Sunday night with his sixth triple-double of the season and 82nd of his career. He joined Larry Bird and Magic Johnson, who did it in Game 6 of the 1982 NBA Finals, as the only players to finish with 13 points, 13 rebounds and 13 assists in a game.

Aaron Gordon had 24 points and Bruce Brown scored 16 for Denver. novelty Christian Braun scored 13 points in first career start.

“Not much changes,” Braun said. “You have to be ready for the plays outside the group, but nothing changed. The same mentality, I’ve come to the same thing. So it’s pretty easy.”

Braun’s defense assignment was And Morantwho led Memphis with 35 points and 10 assists.

“I thought I was doing a good job with Ja and I looked up in the third quarter and it was 30,” Braun said.

The Grizzlies, now tied with the Nuggets in the standings, have lost two straight after a seven-game winning streak.

“You’re playing for first place in the Western Conference, meaningless in the middle of December, but that’s what we’re going to play for tonight,” Denver coach Michael Malone said. “This team is top five in offense and defense, so we’re going to have to bring our A game tonight. And I felt that Bruce, Christian, [Kentavious Caldwell-Pope]Aaron and Nikola did that.”

Denver, which never lost, shot 59 percent and built a 21-point lead in the first quarter. Jeff Greenit’s sinking Zaire Williams made it 37-14 and prompted a Memphis timeout 22 seconds into the second.

“Crazy. His new nickname is ‘Vino,'” Gordon said of the 36-year-old Green. “Age like fine wine.”

Memphis got within nine in the third period, but the Nuggets went ahead by 20 and led by 13 entering the fourth. The Grizzlies made it 92-84 midway through the quarter, but Denver used a 13-3 run to put it away.

“Two games in a row we don’t come out in the first quarter and we pay the price,” Memphis coach Taylor Jenkins said. “We were making good shots early, we just need to convert them and give ourselves a better start to the game.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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