“Jusuf Nurkic kicked our ass.”
That’s what Nuggets coach Mike Malone had to say after his former player dropped a career-high 33 points and 16 boards in a Blazers win. The 33 came in just 33 minutes and on an impressive 12 of 15 shooting from the field and 9 of 11 from the free throw line.
“He’s had this game circled since he got here,” said McCollum, who had a game-high 39 points. “We got the slogan for Big Nurk, `From the bench to the playoffs.”
And if kicking your former team’s ass with a career-high wasn’t cold enough, Nurkic wished them a “happy summer” after the game.
The Blazers have won 12 of their 19 games since trading Mason Plumlee for Nurkic. Plumlee was held scoreless on 0 for 4 shooting against his former team but has played well overall in Denver. More importantly, the trade has unleashed the Nuggets other big man, Nikola Jokic. Against Nurkic, the Joker flirted with another triple-double (17/8/8) and continued to show he’s arguably the most talented big in the league.