Nikola Jokić Leads Denver Nuggets To First NBA Finals In History, Beating The Lakers

LeBron James put up an astounding 40 points in a record-breaking and tense night of basketball.

BYGabriel Bras Nevares
Nikola Jokić Leads Denver Nuggets To First NBA Finals In History, Beating The Lakers

For the first time in NBA history, the Denver Nuggets are heading to the NBA Finals. While this is a huge disappointment for fans of LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers, it was by no means a blowout win. In fact, records shattered left and right as Nikola Jokić and the rest of the Colorado team nabbed 113 points against the Lakers' 111. For example, for 50 years, Wilt Chamberlain held the title of the player with the most triple-doubles in a single playoff. Until Game 4 of the 2023 Western Conference Finals, that is, as the Joker gained his eighth triple-double (and counting) in the postseason.

Elsewhere, James reached a career-high 31 points in the first half, as his teammates tried to match the energy and keep the Nuggets at bay. As far as that team, Jamal Murray scored 25 points and Aaron Gordon got 22, resulting in one of his best showings. Overall, it was an incredibly tight game with a lot of make-or-break moments, even if skeptics might think different from the 4-0 series sweep. Considering what was at stake for both teams, the showdown's conclusion couldn't have been more fitting- or earned.

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The Nuggets Beat The Lakers

With that in mind, now fans, commentators, and NBA experts look to the Eastern Conference Finals, where a similar situation is at hand. The Miami Heat are currently up 3-0 against the Boston Celtics as of writing this article, with the play-in team looking to sweep a team with one of the best records in the whole season. It's been a tense few games, made even more personal when Jimmy Butler of the Heat taunted Celtics players Al Horford and Grant Williams as the Massachusetts team took a loss in Game 3. Still, the series has made for great displays of prowess and determination from both sides.

Meanwhile, the East's Game 4 will take place on Tuesday (May 23) at 8:30 p.m., and we'll see how it differs from the West's endgame. Regardless of who wins, the Denver Nuggets unsurprisingly set themselves up as a true force for the NBA Finals. We're sure a lot of discourse will follow in the coming days before we get back to more nail-biters in the league's post-season. For more news and the latest updates on the NBA, stay up to date on HNHH.

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About The Author
Gabriel Bras Nevares is a music and pop culture news writer for HotNewHipHop. He started in 2022 as a weekend writer and, since joining the team full-time, has developed a strong knowledge in hip-hop news and releases. Whether it’s regular coverage or occasional interviews and album reviews, he continues to search for the most relevant news for his audience and find the best new releases in the genre. What excites him the most is finding pop culture stories of interest, as well as a deeper passion for the art form of hip-hop and its contemporary output. Specifically, Gabriel enjoys the fringes of rap music: the experimental, boundary-pushing, and raw alternatives to the mainstream sound. As a proud native of San Juan, Puerto Rico, he also stays up-to-date with the archipelago’s local scene and its biggest musical exponents in reggaetón, salsa, indie, and beyond. Before working at HotNewHipHop, Gabriel produced multiple short documentaries, artist interviews, venue spotlights, and audio podcasts on a variety of genres and musical figures. Hardcore punk and Go-go music defined much of his coverage during his time at the George Washington University in D.C. His favorite hip-hop artists working today are Tyler, The Creator, Boldy James, JPEGMAFIA, and Earl Sweatshirt.