The Denver Nuggets own the best record in the Western Conference as Nikola Jokic cruises along at a superstar level. Jokic will try to follow up another triple-double and lead the Nuggets to an eighth win in the last nine games when they visit the Phoenix Suns on Saturday.
Jokic recorded his fifth triple-double of the season and the 21st of his career with 18 points, 14 rebounds and 10 assists in Thursday's 121-100 drubbing of the Los Angeles Clippers. "Just another really good home win against a team that embarrassed us in L.A.," Nuggets coach Michael Malone told reporters. "... Another triple-double (for Jokic). The guy continues to amaze." The Suns own the worst record in the West and are playing at home for the eighth time in nine games on Saturday after winning once in the first seven of those home contests. Phoenix, which followed up that rare victory with a 104-94 loss at Dallas on Wednesday, is making a one-game stop back at home before heading east for four straight road games.
TV: 9 p.m. ET, Altitude 2 (Denver), FS Arizona-Plus (Phoenix) LINE: Nuggets -10
ABOUT THE NUGGETS (28-12): Jokic's brilliance occasionally overshadows a breakout season for point guard Jamal Murray, who scored 23 points on 10-of-16 shooting Thursday and was on the receiving end of a full-court assist from Jokic in one of the game's highlights. Murray, 21, was 15-of-45 from the floor in the three previous games but found his form against the Clippers, just in time for another date with the Suns. Murray broke out for 46 points on 16-of-24 shooting (9-of-11 from 3-point range) in a 122-118 triumph at Phoenix on Dec. 29.
ABOUT THE SUNS (10-33): Phoenix was playing the second night of a back-to-back on Wednesday and could not match the Mavericks' aggressiveness. "A little fatigue, a little tired, no excuses, but also a couple of quick shots," Suns coach Igor Kokoskov told reporters. "Open shots. Shots that we're capable of making. We didn't have enough discipline to close this game. Not enough offense." Rookie center Deandre Ayton took a step back with six points on 1-of-7 shooting after going for 17 points on 8-of-13 in Tuesday's 115-111 triumph over Sacramento.
1. Nuggets SG Gary Harris (hamstring) missed the last two games and is questionable for Saturday.
2. Suns SG Devin Booker (back) sat out the last two contests and is day-to-day.
3. Denver took the last three in the series, including two at Phoenix.
PREDICTION: Nuggets 119, Suns 102 Bet Now
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