It’s very much hyperbolic to call an NBA game in the middle of February a must-win. But the Boston Celtics really did need a victory on Tuesday night against the Denver Nuggets. Despite giving up a hefty total of 43 points to Nikola Jokic, they were able to pull that off, handling them by a score of 112-99 at the final buzzer. A big part of that successful venture came from the trio of Jaylen Brown (27), Jayson Tatum (21), and Kemba Walker (17), who combined for 65 points.
Despite Jokic’s scoring spree, the big man was limited in his production elsewhere, picking up just five assists and only grabbing six rebounds. For a player of his quality, that was a big win for the Celtics as it meant they were forcing him to beat them. Jamal Murray also chipped in with 25 but apart from Facundo Campazzo’s 15 no other Nugget managed to put up more than four points. It was too big of a load to carry for Jokic and Murray alone, and it meant the Celtics stopped a two-game skid and a run in which they had lost five out of the past six. As a result, they are now 14-13, a game above .500 again and no doubt hoping they can kick it up a notch moving forward.