National Basketball Association
Preview
Denver at San Antonio
When: 8:00 PM ET, Thursday, April 25, 2019
Where: AT&T Center, San Antonio, Texas

The Denver Nuggets are in solid position to win a playoff series for the first time since 2009. Denver holds a 3-2 lead over San Antonio in the best-of-seven series as it visits the Spurs on Thursday for Game 6 of the Western Conference first-round matchup.

Second-seeded Denver won the past two games, including a Game 4 win that halted a 14-game losing streak in San Antonio, but is well aware eliminating the Spurs will be no easy task. "A close-out game is the hardest game that many of our young players will ever play in, especially against a team like San Antonio," Nuggets coach Michael Malone told reporters. The seventh-seeded Spurs are looking to avoid their second consecutive first-round exit and will have to put up a better effort than they did in Game 5, when they trailed by as many as 30 points in the 108-90 road loss. "We want to win two straight," San Antonio guard Bryn Forbes told reporters. "That's our goal, to play the best two games we can put together and try to win these next two."

TV: 8 p.m. ET, TNT, Altitude (Denver), FS Southwest (San Antonio)

ABOUT THE NUGGETS: All-Star center Nikola Jokic has four double-doubles - including one triple double - during a strong playoff debut that has seen him average 19.6 points, 11.6 rebounds and nine assists in the series. "You hear everybody talk about these other players, rightfully so," Malone told reporters. "The league is filled with great players. What Nikola Jokic is doing in his playoff debut has not happened very often in the history of this game. ... I hope this playoff crowd, this national TV audience that people are tuning in and watching us and saying, 'Man, this kid Nikola Jokic is real.' We know it and it's about time everyone else realizes it." Point guard Jamal Murray appears to have set aside his shooting issues from earlier in the series and he is averaging 23.5 points over the past two games to raise his average to 18.8.

ABOUT THE SPURS: Second-year point guard Derrick White struggled the past two games - averaging 10 points on 8-of-19 shooting - after his career-best 36-point outing on 15-of-21 shooting in Game 3. White said he is learning with each postseason game -"consistency is such a big thing," he said - but both the 24-year-old and coach Gregg Popovich know time is running out. "He's basically a young kid who's feeling his way," Popovich told reporters. "Playoffs are different than the regular season. And he's growing and every night is an education, whether he plays poorly or whether he's great. So, he's a willing young man, going to have a great future. But he's got to have this kind of experience. So, hopefully he'll bounce back on Thursday."

BUZZER BEATERS

1. Spurs SG DeMar DeRozan averaged 18 points in the back-to-back setbacks, dropping his team-best series average to 22.0.

2. Denver backup SG Will Barton scored 17 points in Game 5 and is averaging 14.5 over the past two games.

3. San Antonio C Jakob Poeltl scored 12 points on 6-of-7 shooting in Game 5 and is 18-of-27 in the series.

PREDICTION: Spurs 111, Nuggets 109
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Day Night Div Conf
Denver 57-30 W2 36-8 21-22 3-2 54-28 12-4 37-20
San Antonio 50-37 L2 33-10 17-27 2-2 48-35 10-6 32-25
Last Meeting
Denver San Antonio
Date Away Home Pts Reb FG% Pts Reb FG%
4/23/19 SA 90 DEN 108 108 49 50.0 90 42 41.1
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Denver J. Murray 23 56.2 1
San Antonio L. Aldridge 17 53.8 2
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Denver N. Jokic 11 2 9
San Antonio L. Aldridge 10 2 8
Assists Player  
Denver N. Jokic 8
San Antonio J. Poeltl 4
Season
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Denver N. Jokic 1755 51.0 325
San Antonio L. Aldridge 1872 51.1 374
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Denver N. Jokic 941 248 693
San Antonio L. Aldridge 819 269 550
Assists Player  
Denver N. Jokic 640
San Antonio D. DeRozan 512
Quickchart Matchup
Denver Denver Off vs  San Antonio San Antonio Defense
Denver Off vs San Antonio - Points For 110.6 Points For
Denver Off vs San Antonio - Points Against 109.9 Points Against
Denver - FG% 46.6 FG%
San Antonio - FG% 46.3 FG%
Denver - Reb 46.2 Reb
San Antonio - Reb 43.9 Reb
San Antonio San Antonio Off vs  Denver Denver Defense
San Antonio Off vs Denver - Points For 111.2 Points For
San Antonio Off vs Denver - Points Against 106.5 Points Against
San Antonio - FG% 47.8 FG%
Denver - FG% 45.8 FG%
San Antonio - Reb 44.8 Reb
Denver - Reb 42.7 Reb