Denver Nuggets edge past Utah Jazz into NBA conference semi-finals

Boston Celtics beat the Toronto Raptors with a furious fourth-quarter comeback

 Utah Jazz centre Rudy Gobert battles with Denver Nuggets’ Nikola Jokic during their NBA first round Western Conference playoff game seven in Florida. Photograph: EPA

Utah Jazz centre Rudy Gobert battles with Denver Nuggets’ Nikola Jokic during their NBA first round Western Conference playoff game seven in Florida. Photograph: EPA

 

Nikola Jokic made a two-point shot with less than 30 seconds left as the Denver Nuggets edged out the Utah Jazz. The Jazz led their best-of-seven series 3-1, but Denver pulled back to force a deciding Game Seven and held a 19-point lead early in the third.

The Jazz were not done, restricting Denver to 15 points in each of the final two quarters, but Jokic, who had 30 points on the night, put his side up 80-78.

Mike Conley missed a three-point jump shot on the buzzer — it bounced out of the basket — as Denver go on to face the Los Angeles Clippers in the conference semi-finals.

Meanwhile, the Boston Celtics opened up a 2-0 lead in their Eastern Conference semi-final series against the reigning NBA champions the Toronto Raptors.

Jayson Tatum struck a playoff-career-high 34 points and Marcus Smart sunk five 3-pointers for the Celtics, who overturned a 12-point deficit in the third quarter to win 102-99.

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