91-104. Against the Pistons, Howard and Jokic put the Nuggets third in the NBA West

Detroit (USA), May 14 (EFE) .- Rookie point guard Markus Howard scored 20 points, his best mark as a professional, Serbian center Nikola Jokic had a triple-double and the Denver Nuggets placed in third place of the Western Conference by beating the Detroit Pistons 91-104 on the road.

Jokic had 20 points, 15 rebounds and 11 assists as Denver’s leader (47-24). The Nuggets improved to 3-0 on a four-game road trip ending the regular season.

The Nuggets took advantage of the surprise loss suffered by the Los Angeles Clippers in their visit to Houston, where they lost 122-115.

Howard made his first career starter, taking over from Argentine guard, fellow rookie Facundo Campazzo, and setting a scoring record for the third time in four games.

The 20-year-old rookie scored 13 points against the Brooklyn Nets on Saturday and 15 against the Minnesota Timberwolves on Thursday.

The Pistons (20-51) lost for the 11th time in 13 games and have the worst record in the Eastern Conference.

Guard Hamadou Diallo led the Pistons with 18 points, and forward Tyler Cook, who contributed 17, and Lithuanian rookie Deividas Sirvydis added a career-high 16 points.

The Pistons only dressed eight players, the oldest being center Jahlil Okafor, 25, and scored 16% (6-37) from triples.

The first half turned into an unexpected field goal duel between rookies Sirvydis and Howard.

The rookies scored 16 points apiece at the half, with Jokic adding 13 points, nine rebounds and nine assists for Denver to take a 53-57 lead.

Jokic finished off the triple-double early in the third quarter, and he and Howard finished the period with 20 points for the Nuggets to take a decisive 74-87 lead.

(c) EFE Agency

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