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Bojan Bogdanovic’s career-high 48 points pushes Utah Jazz past Denver Nuggets

·3-min read

A career-best performance from Bojan Bogdanovic lifted the Utah Jazz to a 127-120 victory over the Denver Nuggets in a battle of Western Conference contenders.

The Croatian finished with a career-high 48 points as the Jazz secured their fourth-straight win to maintain their one-game lead at the top of the conference.

It was a back-and-forth affair through the first three quarters, but the Nuggets struggled to find the bottom of the net late as they fell to fourth place.

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Nikola Jokic posted 24 points, nine rebounds and 13 assists for Denver, while Jordan Clarkson added 21 points and eight assists for Utah.

Fellow Western Conference heavyweights the Phoenix Suns impressed in a 23-point win against the high-flying New York Knicks.

The Suns left it until late to seal the 128-105 victory, outscoring New York 38-17 in the fourth quarter to hand the Knicks back-to-back losses for the first time in a month.

Deandre Ayton led the way for Phoenix with 26 points and 15 assists.

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The Los Angeles Lakers slipped closer to the play-in tournament as they suffered a narrow 106-101 loss to the Portland Trail Blazers.

Damian Lillard, who top-scored with 38 points, was dominant down the stretch for Portland – the win pushing the Trail Blazers above the Lakers for outright sixth place in the Western Conference.

The defeat puts Los Angeles at risk of missing an outright playoff spot, with just five games left in the regular season.

The Philadelphia 76ers were pushed all the way by the New Orleans Pelicans, but managed to just hold on to secure a 109-107 win.

Joel Embiid added to his MVP credentials with 37 points and 13 rebounds – his last of which was crucial in setting up Tobias Harris’ late go-ahead three.

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Luka Doncic added another milestone to his burgeoning career as he led the Dallas Mavericks to a 110-90 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The 22-year-old scored seven points in the first four minutes to become the fourth-youngest player in NBA history to reach 5,000 points.

DeMar DeRozan and Dejounte Murray combined for 47 points to propel the San Antonio Spurs over the Sacramento Kings 113-104.

Elsewhere the Chicago Bulls upset the Boston Celtics 121-99, the Milwaukee Bucks defeated the Houston Rockets 141-133, the Miami Heat returned to the winner’s circle with a 121-112 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves and the Charlotte Hornets beat the Orlando Magic 122-112 to strengthen their hold on eighth spot in the Eastern Conference.