Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic sat far on the bench during the team’s implosion against the Boston Celtics on Sunday.
The Denver Nuggets entered Sunday with an eight-game winning streak, looking to extend it to nine with a victory over the Boston Celtics. It sure looked like the Nuggets were heading in that direction with a 14-point lead late in the third quarter. However, the Celtics went on an unreal 31-3 run to win 105-87.
During said implosion, Nuggets star center Nikola Jokic was spotted sitting far away on the bench while his team was huddled up during a timeout.
— gary washburn (@GwashburnGlobe) April 11, 2021
Jokic’s behavior in 4th was concerning. That’s a real thing .
— Hardwood Paroxysm (@HPbasketball) April 11, 2021
Nuggets: Nikola Jokic was benched late in fourth quarter during implosion vs. Celtics
The Nuggets could not get anything going in the fourth quarter, as they tallied a grand total of eight points, as compared to Boston’s 31. It got to the point where Nuggets head coach Mike Malone pulled Jokic from the game with over four minutes remaining with the team trailing 96-82.
In 32 minutes of playing time, Jokic only managed to tally 17 points (6-of-15 from field, 5-for-7 on free throws). Despite that uncharacteristically low point total, Jokic notched a triple-double by dishing out 11 assists and by grabbing 10 boards.
Meanwhile, the Celtics were led by Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown on Sunday afternoon. Tatum followed up his 53-point performance against the Washington Wizards from Friday by scoring 28 points (9-for-23 from field, eight-for-eight on free throws) and grabbing 10 rebounds. Brown tallied 20 points (8-for-15 shooting, two-for-three from free throw line), eight rebounds, three assists and two blocks.
In terms of game film, the Nuggets will likely want to burn the end of the third quarter and the entirety of the fourth quarter. But, Denver will have to focus on their next game on Monday night against the Golden State Warriors.