Denver beat Minnesota to level play-off series

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Image caption: Aaron Gordon (centre) scored 27 points for Denver Nuggets

Reigning NBA champions the Denver Nuggets secured a 115-107 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves to level their Western Conference play-off semi-final series at 2-2.
Nuggets centre Nikola Jokic scored 16 of his 35 points in the fourth quarter, with Aaron Gordon adding 27 points and Jamal Murray ending game four in Minneapolis on 19 points.
Anthony Edwards led the overall scoring on Sunday with 44 points in total for Minnesota.

“Never underestimate the heart of a champion,” Nuggets coach Michael Malone said of his team.
“They were quick to write us off, but these guys, we won a championship a year ago.”
The Nuggets, who lost the opening two games of the semi-finals in Denver, were 64-49 ahead at half-time, but the Timberwolves rallied in the final quarter to pull within six points of the lead in the final minute.
“This team has been tested time and time again, and we’ve found a way to solve whatever has been thrown at us,” Malone said.
The series goes back to Denver for game five on Tuesday.
Pacers demolish Knicks as Atlanta get first pick for 2024 draft
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Image caption: Tyrese Haliburton top-scored for the rampant Pacers
In Sunday’s other games, the Indiana Pacers demolished the injury-hit New York Knicks 121-89 to level up their Eastern Conference play-off semi-final series after four games.
The Pacers dominated from the off and raced into a 20-point lead after the first quarter.
They continued to control the game as six players scored double figures – Tyrese Haliburton the pick with 20 points.
The Knicks had led the best-of-seven series 2-0 before the Pacers halved the deficit with victory in game three, and the resurgence continued on Sunday in Indianapolis. The teams return to New York for game five on Tuesday.
“We did our job,” Haliburton said. “They did their job and won two at home; we did our job and won two at home. Game five is higher stakes.”
Meanwhile, the Atlanta Hawks will have the first pick in next month’s 2024 NBA draft after coming out on top in the draft lottery.
The lottery determines the draft order for the 14 teams that failed to make the play-offs.
The Washington Wizards will pick second, followed by the Houston Rockets and the San Antonio Spurs.
The Spurs won last year’s lottery and picked Victor Wembanyama, who last week took the Rookie of the Year award.



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