LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Jamal Murray had 28 points, 12 assists and eight rebounds and made two late 3-pointers to halt a Lakers charge, helping the Denver Nuggets to a 114-106 victory Tuesday night that cut Los Angeles’ lead to 2-1 in the Western Conference finals.
Former Tolton and Missouri standout Michael Porter Jr. had nine points, six rebounds and two assists on the game.
The Nuggets lost almost all of a 20-point lead in the fourth quarter but held on to win, avoiding a 3-0 hole that would have been daunting even for this never-out-of-it team.
Denver has set a record by erasing two 3-1 deficits in this postseason, but no NBA team has ever come back from 3-0.
Jerami Grant added a playoff career-high 26 points and Nikola Jokic had 22 points and 10 rebounds for the Nuggets, who will try to even the series in Game 4 on Thursday.
LeBron James had 30 points, 11 assists and 10 rebounds for the Lakers, who remained two wins from their first NBA Finals appearance in a decade. Anthony Davis, who made the winning 3-pointer at the buzzer in Game 2, scored 27 points.
The Nuggets led by 20 with 10½ minutes left and soon after were hanging on after the Lakers charged back with a 19-2 run, turning to a zone defense and forcing turnovers that led to easy baskets.
With Denver’s lead down to four, Murray made a 3-pointer with 2:16 remaining. He then found Paul Millsap under the basket for a score before hitting a long 3 to push the lead back to 111-99 with 53 seconds to play.