The margin of error for making the playoffs is infinitesimal in the Western Conference, and if the Denver Nuggets have many more games against playoff competitors like they did tonight vs. the Utah Jazz, they're likely to find themselves on the outside looking in. The Nuggets were blown out by the Jazz in Utah on Friday night, bringing each team's record to 26-22 as Denver tries to find itself in the post-Nene era, and with Danilo Gallinari out with a broken thumb.
The Nuggets were sufficient on offense on Friday night, but you're just not going to win very many games— if any— when you give up over 120 points. The Nuggets offered basically no resistance to the Jazz offense, allowing Utah to shoot 59% from the field and 47% from three point range. All five Jazz starters finished in double digits, with Al Jefferson leading the way with 23, as did role players Derrick Favors and Alec Burks.
Al Harrington (20 points) and Kenneth Faried (16 points) paced the Nuggets, but it simply wasn't enough as Denver was overwhelmed in the third quarter and were never able to recover. Denver's road trip continues on Sunday when they'll ship up north to visit the Minnesota Timberwolves, yet another team they're battling for playoff position in a deep Western Conference.
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