Murray scores 34 points, Nuggets beat Bulls 131-127 in OT

Denver Nuggets

Chicago Bulls guard Zach LaVine, center, is trapped with the ball by Denver Nuggets guard Facundo Campazzo, left, and forward Michael Porter Jr. in overtime of an NBA basketball game Friday, March 19, 2021, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

DENVER (AP) — Jamal Murray scored 34 points, including a tying 3-pointer in the final second of regulation and a crucial jumper in the final seconds of overtime, lifting the Denver Nuggets past the Chicago Bulls 131-127 on Friday night.

Nikola Jokic had 34 points, 15 rebounds and nine assists in helping the Nuggets to their eighth win in nine games. Michael Porter Jr. added 19 points for the Nuggets, who extended their home winning streak against the Bulls to 13.

Zach LaVine had 32 points to lead the Bulls. Otto Porter Jr. added 22 points.

Trailing by eight heading into the fourth quarter, the Nuggets fell behind 103-89 after Coby White hit a 3-pointer with 8:05 remaining. But Denver strung together an 8-0 run to narrow the deficit to 103-97. A dunk by Porter and 3 by Murray around a Chicago turnover put Denver up 108-107 with 2:41 left.

Chicago fought back to reclaim the lead, getting a 3-pointer by Otto Porter Jr. and a basket by LaVine for a four-point edge with 1:14 to play. Chicago added another basket before Jokic hit a 3-pointer. After a steal by Facundo Campazzo off LaVine, Murray drove in for a layup to pull the Nuggets to within 114-113 with 18.3 seconds left.

The Nuggets fouled LaVine, who made both free throws with 16 seconds left but Murray connected from the corner on a 3 with .04 seconds left in regulation, sending the game into overtime with the score tied at 116.

With the Nuggets clinging to a 2-point lead, Murray connected on a jumper with 10.3 seconds left in the extra period to secure the win.

The Bulls got off to a solid start and led 55-47 at the half. Chicago took an 89-81 lead into the fourth quarter.

TIP-INS

Bulls: G Garrett Temple remains sidelined by a sprained left ankle that he sustained a week ago against Miami, though he has been steadily increasing physical activity. “He’s been able to do different things on the court,” coach Billy Donovan said before the team’s game at Denver. “He actually, today at shootaround, was doing some shooting, which was good to see. I think he’s definitely progressing.”

Nuggets: The team’s backcourt remains depleted. Rookie G RJ Hampton has been out the last three weeks due to health and safety protocols. G Gary Harris remains sidelined by a left abductor strain, while G Monte Morris has missed time due to a quad injury.

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