Jamal Murray ends Lakers' season with game-winning jumper

Jamal Murray has done it again.

The Denver Nuggets star, after his wild buzzer-beater in Game 2 of the series, hit another game-winner on Monday night to officially close out their opening-round playoff series against the Los Angeles Lakers.

Murray, with the game tied in the final seconds, expertly hit a jumper over Austin Reaves from just inside the free throw line to seal the 108-106 win over the Lakers. His shot fell with just less than four seconds left, which wasn’t enough time for a last shot attempt from the Lakers to fall.

That officially gave the Nuggets the 4-1 series win over the Lakers, and sent them into the Western Conference semifinals. They’ll now take on the Minnesota Timberwolves, who swept the Phoenix Suns in their playoff series.

Murray, who was questionable on Monday night due to a calf strain, hit a buzzer-beater while falling out of bounds in Game 2, which put the Nuggets up 2-0.

“I’m speechless. It’s a dream come true,” Murray said on TNT. “All these fans on your side to get it done in this fashion, I don’t know. I don’t know what to say. I’m just happy for us.”

The Lakers, who were swept by the Nuggets in the Western Conference finals last season, have now lost in the opening round of the playoffs twice in the last four seasons.

The Nuggets will now take on the Minnesota Timberwolves in the Western Conference semifinals after beating the Lakers 4-1.The Nuggets will now take on the Minnesota Timberwolves in the Western Conference semifinals after beating the Lakers 4-1.

Jamal Murray and the Nuggets will now take on the Minnesota Timberwolves in the Western Conference semifinals after beating the Lakers 4-1. (AAron Ontiveroz/The Denver Post)

After the Lakers held a slight lead at the break, thanks to a huge 12-0 run in the second quarter to bounce back from an early hole, the Lakers nearly lost Davis right out of the break

Davis took a big shot to his left shoulder after colliding with Michael Porter Jr. in the opening minutes of the second half. The two hit in the middle of the lane, and Davis immediately fell down to the court hard. He remained down for several minutes, too, clearly in a lot of pain, before he finally got up and walked over to the bench.

The shot itself wasn’t anything outstanding, but it clearly hit him in exactly the right spot to leave an impact. He remained in the game after a timeout, but was holding onto his neck and his arm was seen just dangling several times over the next few possessions. He had 16 points and nine rebounds at that point.

Despite the injury, the Lakers pushed their lead to nine points briefly near the midway point of the period after a huge 3-pointer from James. Davis, meanwhile, was pretty much useless out on the court from then on. When he grabbed his 10th rebound of the night, he immediately grabbed for his shoulder in pain.

That nine-point advantage was it for the Lakers. The Nuggets then rattled off a 19-5 run to take the lead just a few minutes later, which included a huge 3-pointer from Porter despite taking a big shot that sent him to the court.

Davis went back to the locker room late in the period, but he returned to the court to start the fourth. Though the Lakers took the lead briefly midway through the final period, Murray finally took over. Murray dropped four quick points and threw down a massive dunk over James and immediately flexed on him under the rim.

Murray, then after a tight back-and-forth, hit a huge 3-pointer to put the Nuggets back up by two points with a minute left. That set up his game-winner, which officially gave the Nuggets the two-point win and the series victory.

James finished just shy of a triple-double for the Lakers. He had 30 points, 11 assists and nine rebounds in the loss while shooting 11-of-21 from the field. Reaves added 19 points, and Davis finished with 17 points and 15 rebounds.

Murray led the Nuggets with 32 points and seven assists, and he went 5-of-10 from behind the arc. Porter added 26 points, and Nikola Jokić finished with 25 points, 20 rebounds and nine assists.

The Nuggets will now take on the Timberwolves in the Western Conference semifinals starting on Saturday in Denver. Minnesota swept the Phoenix Suns in their series on Sunday night in what was their first series in in two decades.

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