The Denver Nuggets played an up-and-down game, coming on strong in the first and third quarters, but fading with a whimper in the second and fourth. The Nuggets seemed to have all the momentum heading into the final 12 minutes after making a run to come back and take the lead over the Oklahoma City Thunder. But in the fourth quarter, Oklahoma City began to pull away, only to see the Nuggets come clawing back as the Thunder attempted to cough-up the game.
Denver was able to close the gap to four with under 30 seconds to go and Kevin Durant left the door wide-open after missing two free throws. J.R. Smith took advantage on the other end, sneaking into the corner and burying a three to make it a one-point game.
Denver lost track of Serge Ibaka, the biggest man on the floor, as he streaked to the bucket for the uncontested dunk to put the Thunder up three. J.R. Smith was unable to play hero for the Nuggets with time winding down as James Harden played terrific defense to deny a clean shot.
Smith couldn't ever hit rim and the Thunder escaped with a 97-94 win.
Kevin Durant led the way for the Thunder with a game-high 26 points. Russell Westbrook was on fire in the fourth quarter to push his total to 23 points for the game. Serge Ibaka was dominant on the inside, finishing with 22 points and 16 rebounds. James Harden was also in double-figures with 10 points.
With the win, Oklahoma City is one game from ending the series and sweeping the Nuggets. The Thunder hold a 3-0 series lead, with Game 4 on the way on Monday night in Denver.