DENVER — Nikola Jokic had a triple-double after making up with Suns proprietor Mat Ishbia and Michael Porter Jr. sank 5 3-pointers to assist the Denver Nuggets beat Phoenix 118-102 on Tuesday evening for a 3-2 collection lead.

Joker had 29 factors, 13 rebounds and 12 assists for his tenth profession playoff triple-double, breaking a tie with Wilt Chamberlain for many by a middle in NBA historical past.

“To be trustworthy, I identical to to win the sport, so no matter it takes,” stated Jokic, who was coming off a career-best 53-point efficiency in Sport 4.

Sport 6 is Thursday evening in Phoenix.

“If we play the way in which we did at the moment,” Jokic stated, “we’re going to have an opportunity” to shut out the collection and advance to the Western Convention Finals for the primary time because the NBA bubble in 2020.

The Suns are assured they will shake this one off identical to they did in bouncing again from two losses in Denver final week.

“Yeah. I’ve been in right here a few instances now,” Phoenix star Devin Booker stated. “I find it irresistible. Each recreation has is its personal character. Each recreation is its personal film, its personal totally different preparation and every thing to go together with it. We’re going watch over movie, see how we might be higher for Sport 6.”

Nikola Jokic, who posted a triple-double, shoots over Deandre Ayton throughout the Nuggets’ 118-102 Sport 5 win over the Suns.

The house group has gained each recreation within the collection. If that holds true once more, the decisive winner-take-all conflict will come Sunday again in Denver, the place the top-seeded Nuggets personal the NBA’s finest residence document at 40-7, together with 6-0 within the playoffs.

Nuggets coach Michael Malone devised a five-point plan for the Nuggets to regain management of the collection after shedding two in Phoenix: patch up their transition protection, decelerate Booker, get extra from his bench, unleash MPJ and knock down open 3s.

Verify, verify, verify, verify and verify.

Porter bounced again from a quiet evening in Sport 4 with 19 factors on 5-of-8 capturing from lengthy vary. Denver outscored Phoenix 31-23 in fast-break factors; Booker scored 28 factors however missed 11 of 19 photographs; Bruce Brown boosted the Nuggets’ bench with 25 factors and the Nuggets sank 13 of 27 from lengthy vary.

Jamal Murray added 19 factors for Denver, and Kevin Durant chipped in 26 factors for Phoenix but additionally had an uncharacteristic 5 turnovers.

The Nuggets turned a three-point halftime lead right into a 91-74 cushion with a domiinant third quarter wherein Jokic made seven of eight photographs for 17 factors and Booker was simply 1-for-8 for 3 factors.

The chippiness of the collection reached a brand new stage within the closing minute of the third quarter when Nuggets swingman Brown antagonized the Suns as they huddled up on the courtroom and Durant gave Jokic a forearm shiver. A double technical was assessed on Durant and Brown.

“Simply to see what they have been drawing up,” Jokic stated when requested why he and Brown have been spying on the Suns.

Durant known as the dust-up “completely nothing, it wasn’t something severe. They have been excited, they have been up large and we have been attempting to attract up some stuff. So, it was nothing.”

Kevin Durant shoves Nikola Jokic during the third quarter of the Suns' loss.
Kevin Durant shoves Nikola Jokic throughout the third quarter of the Suns’ loss.
USA TODAY Sports activities through Reuters Con

So, no want for a hug and a handshake subsequent time they play.

Earlier than this recreation, Jokic shared a heat pregame embrace — and the basketball — with Ishbia 48 hours after their kerfuffle over a unfastened ball in Phoenix in Sport 4 resulted in a technical foul and a $25,000 wonderful for the Nuggets large man.

“I hoped he was going to pay my wonderful,” Jokic cracked after the sport.

“I believe he’s simply making mild of a state of affairs that was means overblown,” Malone stated. “The NBA dealt with it the correct means and I give their proprietor, Mat Ishbia, plenty of credit score when he got here out after the sport and stated, ‘Hear, I don’t need anybody to be suspended. Let’s let the gamers resolve this on the courtroom.’ So, kudos to him for that.

“However yeah, I believe it simply speaks to Nikola’s character and him being a little bit little bit of a sensible (aleck).”

The NBA had stickers positioned on the primary a number of rows of seats — together with Ishbia’s — reminding spectators, particularly these near the motion, of its fan code of conduct coverage and a reminder that violations may end in ejection and revocation of tickets.