DENVER (AP)Bones Hyland made seven 3-pointers and scored 26 points, DeAndre Jordan hit a rare 3, and the Denver Nuggets beat the Utah Jazz 117-101 on Friday night.
Michael Porter Jr. added 22 points and 13 rebounds and Nikola Jokic had 12 points, 10 rebounds and six assists while shooting just 3 of 10 from the field for the Nuggets, who were blown out in their season opener against the surprising Jazz.
Denver was 17 for 37 on 3-pointers, none as surprising as Jordan’s heave from the left wing late in the third quarter. Hyland drew a double team and fed the 6-foot-11 Jordan with the shot clock running down. The lefty calmly swished the 27-footer at the buzzer, then mimicked teammate Jamal Murray’s ”Blue Arrow” bow-and-arrow shot to the sky as the crowd roared.
The 34-year-old Jordan had been 1 for 12 in his career on 3s in 984 previous NBA games, with the lone make coming with the Los Angeles Clippers in the 2014-15 season. Jordan finished with 12 points and 13 rebounds.
Nuggets coach Michael Malone hopes it’s the last 3 Jordan shoots.
”I told him, `Let’s stay at 100% from 3 all season long,”’ Malone said, smiling.
Lauri Markkanen had 17 points and 10 rebounds and Mike Conley scored 14 for the Jazz, who entered 4-1.
Hyland, who finished a point shy of matching his career high, went 7 of 12 from long range. He hit four straight 3s in the second quarter as the Nuggets built a 20-point lead.
”They think, `Well, he’s nowhere near the (3-point) line, so he’s not going to shoot this,” Hyland said. ”But I practice these shots, night in and night out. And I’m comfortable shooting farther than I am.”
Denver didn’t put it away until early in the fourth quarter when Hyland hit a couple more 3s amid Jokic’s poor shooting night. Jokic was 0 for 4 from 3-point range and is 3 for 14 from long distance this season.
Utah hit 4 of its first 5 3-pointers, then went 6 of 34 from long range the rest of the way as coach Will Hardy lamented the team’s lack of pace. Jordan Clarkson shot 1 of 10 from the field and missed all seven of his 3s.
”I thought for the most part we got good 3-point looks,” Hardy said. JC going 0 for 7 is definitely an anomaly. I thought he took good ones.”
Jazz: Collin Sexton, who missed the second half of Wednesday’s win over Houston with a sore left oblique, scored 13 points off the bench. … Rudy Gay and Simone Fontecchio (COVID-19 protocol) and Walker Kessler (illness) were out.
Nuggets: Porter was back after a one-game absence he said was caused by a muscle tweak in his surgically-repaired back. ”I’ll definitely be able to play the vast, vast majority of games,” Porter said. … Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (left ankle) and Davon Reed (family issue) were out.
Nuggets rookie Christian Braun brought the crowd to its feet in the second quarter when he blocked Malik Beasley’s driving layup at the rim and then grabbed the loose ball. It led to a Hyland 3 in transition.
Braun confidently said he has most ”bounce” on the team.
”Those are the plays I like to make,” Braun said. ”I got to yell a couple times this game.”
Braun, the 21st overall pick from Kansas, had 10 points and six rebounds.
Jazz: Host Memphis on Saturday night to complete the second of six back-to-back sets over their first 22 games.
Nuggets: Try to beat the Lakers for the second time in five days on Sunday night in Los Angeles.
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