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Jokic's triple-double leads Nuggets over Spurs, 117-109

DENVER (AP) San Antonio has dominated the Nuggets for four seasons, so Denver wasn't apologizing for finally beating the depleted Spurs.

''A win is a win,'' Nikola Jokic said. ''We're going to take it.''

Jokic had 23 points, 13 rebounds and 11 assists, Will Barton scored 20 points and Denver beat the struggling Spurs 117-109 on Tuesday night.

Jokic notched his fourth triple-double of the season to lead the Nuggets to their fifth win in six games and finally one against San Antonio. The Spurs had won 15 of 16 against Denver, including the first two meetings this season.

''I know they're banged up, they have some guys out, but so do we,'' Nuggets coach Michael Malone said. ''They have the best coach in NBA history. They're always going to play the right way.''

Denver outscored the Spurs 30-19 in the fourth quarter to rally from seven down late in the third.

Joffrey Lauvergne scored a career-high 26 points and grabbed 11 rebounds, and Tony Parker had 17 points for San Antonio. The Spurs have lost five of six heading into their All-Star break.

''We made some poor choices offensively,'' Spurs forward Pau Gasol said. ''We had a couple of turnovers in a row and they capitalized on easy transition points and that's when they broke the game open.''

San Antonio was again without its top two players in Kawhi Leonard and LaMarcus Aldridge. Leonard has missed all but nine games and Aldridge sat for the second straight night to rest his sore right knee.

Things got worse when Manu Ginobli left the game in the third quarter and didn't return.

''He just felt something in the bottom of his foot and he didn't want to take any chances,'' coach Gregg Popovich said. ''It's a sprain.''

Lauvergne stepped up in Aldridge's absence and surpassed his previous high of 22 points for the Nuggets nearly two years ago. His 11 rebounds were a season high.

Lauvergne's layup early in the fourth gave the Spurs a 100-99 lead but Denver closed out on an 18-9 run. Gary Harris had seven of his 15 points in the last 7:28 and Jokic got his 10th assist on Wilson Chandler's driving layup with 3:19 left that gave Denver a 114-103 lead.

Jokic has 10 career triple-doubles.

''I was aggressive and then they started collapsing on me and I just made an extra pass,'' he said. ''That was an easy, easy game for me.''

Jamal Murray scored 17 points after missing Monday's practice and Tuesday's morning shootaround with chest discomfort. He was a game-time decision but played 38 minutes.

TIP-INS

Spurs: University of Colorado coach Tad Boyle was on hand to see his former player, Derrick White, now with San Antonio. White had two points in two minutes. ... Aldridge will participate in All-Star weekend despite sitting out Monday and Tuesday. ... The Spurs' bench outscored the starters 66-43.

Nuggets: Chandler had 17 points and eight rebounds. ... G Devin Harris made his home debut. Harris was acquired from Dallas in a three-team trade last Thursday and played in Saturday's win at Phoenix. ... F Mason Plumlee (right calf strain) missed his seventh straight game but is expected back after the All-Star break.

PAIN TOLERANCE

Murray wouldn't specify if he is injured or is battling illness but said there was no question he was going to play even though he was bedridden for a couple of days.

Murray didn't miss a game as a rookie last season despite playing with a core-muscle injury that required offseason surgery.

''I don't miss a lot of games,'' he said.

FAMILIAR FACE

Lauvergne played his first two seasons in Denver, including 59 games in 2015-16, Malone's first year as coach. So Malone jokingly took credit for Lauvergne's play Tuesday night.

''Well, we developed him. He learned all that here,'' Malone said. ''I'm happy for Joffrey. I've always been a big fan of his. He's a hard worker and obviously he took advantage of the opportunity.''

Lauvergne has played sparingly this season but averaged 20.5 minutes the last two games.

''I understand how the game goes in the NBA,'' he said. ''Of course I would like to play more because I know I can play. I know I can be a good player. But I also understand this part of it.''

UP NEXT

Spurs: At the Denver Nuggets on Feb. 23.

Nuggets: At the Milwaukee Bucks on Thursday night.

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Key Players
P. Gasol
16 PF
N. Jokic
15 C
31.4 Min. Per Game 31.4
16.6 Pts. Per Game 16.6
5.6 Ast. Per Game 5.6
10.4 Reb. Per Game 10.4
46.2 Field Goal % 47.8
46.3 Three Point % 47.6
78.1 Free Throw % 84.6
+ 2 Derrick White made jump shot 0:10
  Out of bounds turnover on Darrell Arthur 0:17
  Personal foul on Danny Green 0:33
  Offensive rebound by Nikola Jokic 0:37
  Gary Harris missed driving layup 0:38
  Out of bounds turnover on Joffrey Lauvergne 0:57
  Defensive rebound by Joffrey Lauvergne 1:07
  Will Barton missed 3-pt. jump shot 1:09
+ 2 Joffrey Lauvergne made dunk, assist by Tony Parker 1:29
  Defensive rebound by Davis Bertans 1:31
  Jamal Murray missed 3-pt. jump shot 1:35
Team Stats
Points 109 117
Field Goals 44-82 (53.7%) 46-93 (49.5%)
3-Pointers 6-22 (27.3%) 10-32 (31.3%)
Free Throws 15-22 (68.2%) 15-18 (83.3%)
Total Rebounds 52 43
Offensive 10 11
Defensive 32 24
Team 10 8
Assists 24 29
Steals 6 10
Blocks 7 3
Turnovers 18 11
Fouls 22 18
Technicals 0 0
26 PTS, 11 REB, 2 AST
23 PTS, 13 REB, 11 AST
1234T
away team logo Spurs 35-24 32292919109
home team logo Nuggets 31-26 30282930117
Team Stats
away team logo Spurs 35-24 96.8 PPG 37.6 RPG 19.0 APG
home team logo Nuggets 31-26 PPG RPG APG
Key Players
J. Lauvergne C 4.1 PPG 3.1 RPG 0.7 APG 51.6 FG%
N. Jokic C 18.5 PPG 10.7 RPG 6.1 APG 50.0 FG%
Top Scorers
J. Lauvergne C 26 PTS 11 REB 2 AST
N. Jokic C 23 PTS 13 REB 11 AST
53.7 FG% 49.5
27.3 3PT FG% 31.3
68.2 FT% 83.3
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
D. Bertans 27 12 4 1 0 0 1 0 4/9 3/8 1/2 0 4 17 -5
D. Murray 27 12 6 2 2 3 4 4 6/10 0/0 0/0 3 3 23 -8
P. Gasol 20 10 7 3 0 1 2 2 4/10 0/1 2/2 0 7 22 -21
D. Green 32 7 6 2 2 0 0 3 2/3 1/2 2/2 2 4 19 0
K. Anderson 21 2 2 2 0 2 2 2 1/3 0/0 0/2 0 2 8 -24
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
D. Bertans 27 12 4 1 0 0 1 0 4/9 3/8 1/2 0 4 17 -5
D. Murray 27 12 6 2 2 3 4 4 6/10 0/0 0/0 3 3 23 -8
P. Gasol 20 10 7 3 0 1 2 2 4/10 0/1 2/2 0 7 22 -21
D. Green 32 7 6 2 2 0 0 3 2/3 1/2 2/2 2 4 19 0
K. Anderson 21 2 2 2 0 2 2 2 1/3 0/0 0/2 0 2 8 -24
Bench MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
J. Lauvergne 23 26 11 2 0 1 2 1 12/15 0/0 2/4 4 7 40 +18
T. Parker 21 17 1 4 1 0 0 0 7/11 0/0 3/4 0 1 27 -2
M. Ginobili 13 8 1 2 0 0 4 3 2/3 0/1 4/4 1 0 9 0
P. Mills 25 8 1 3 1 0 2 4 3/8 2/6 0/0 0 1 14 -2
B. Forbes 19 5 3 3 0 0 1 1 2/8 0/4 1/2 0 3 13 +7
D. White 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 1 1/1 0/0 0/0 0 0 2 -2
D. Hilliard 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0/1 0/0 0/0 0 0 0 -3
B. Paul 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0/0 0/0 0/0 0 0 0 +2
L. Aldridge - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
R. Gay - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
K. Leonard - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
M. Costello - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 233 109 42 24 6 7 18 22 44/82 6/22 15/22 10 32 194 -40
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
N. Jokic 32 23 13 11 0 1 1 0 8/15 2/5 5/6 5 8 58 +11
W. Barton 42 20 5 6 2 0 2 2 9/19 2/7 0/0 2 3 37 +15
W. Chandler 34 17 8 5 2 2 0 0 8/19 0/5 1/2 2 6 39 +10
J. Murray 37 17 5 1 2 0 3 4 6/9 3/6 2/3 2 3 23 +19
G. Harris 35 15 0 3 2 0 0 4 7/17 1/3 0/0 0 0 23 +6
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
N. Jokic 32 23 13 11 0 1 1 0 8/15 2/5 5/6 5 8 58 +11
W. Barton 42 20 5 6 2 0 2 2 9/19 2/7 0/0 2 3 37 +15
W. Chandler 34 17 8 5 2 2 0 0 8/19 0/5 1/2 2 6 39 +10
J. Murray 37 17 5 1 2 0 3 4 6/9 3/6 2/3 2 3 23 +19
G. Harris 35 15 0 3 2 0 0 4 7/17 1/3 0/0 0 0 23 +6
Bench MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
T. Lyles 16 11 2 0 0 0 1 2 4/6 0/1 3/3 0 2 12 -5
D. Harris 20 7 1 3 1 0 1 3 1/4 1/4 4/4 0 1 14 -2
D. Arthur 6 5 0 0 1 0 2 3 2/2 1/1 0/0 0 0 4 -8
M. Beasley 13 2 1 0 0 0 1 0 1/2 0/0 0/0 0 1 2 -4
M. Morris 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0/0 0/0 0/0 0 0 0 -2
P. Millsap - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
K. Faried - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
M. Plumlee - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
T. Lydon - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
J. Hernangomez - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
R. Jefferson - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
T. Craig - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 236 117 35 29 10 3 11 18 46/93 10/32 15/18 11 24 212 +40