Game Grades: SGA nails game-winner as OKC Thunder trio stars in Denver

The OKC Thunder pull off a thrilling come from behind win at the buzzer in Denver.

Oklahoma City Thunder v Denver Nuggets
Oklahoma City Thunder v Denver Nuggets / Matthew Stockman/GettyImages
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The Oklahoma City Thunder snatched a win from the defending champions at the last second.

The Thunder beat the Denver Nuggets 118-117 after trailing for almost the entire game. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander’s game-winning mid-range jumper with 0.9 seconds left lifted the Thunder to victory.

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander’s game-winner capped off a late OKC Thunder comeback.

After entering the fourth quarter down by just two points, the Thunder’s deficit quickly grew with Gilgeous-Alexander on the bench. From there, the Nuggets did not allow the Thunder to get back into the game for much of the quarter.

Every time Oklahoma City tried to break through, Denver would make a play to maintain the status quo. Nikola Jokic’s 3-pointer as the shot clock expired pushed Denver’s lead to 10 midway through the quarter.

Still, the Thunder kept pushing ahead. Defensively, it was rookie Chet Holmgren taking on the biggest load.

Holmgren finished with nine blocks as he bolstered the Thunder’s defense on the interior. While it felt like they could not string stops and scores together early in the quarter, the Thunder eventually got the tide to turn.

After cutting the deficit to one multiple times in the last two minutes, Jokic’s missed three triggered a transition opportunity for the Thunder. And while the Nuggets were able to set up, Gilgeous-Alexander got to his spot and went home with a win.

The Thunder will be at home for the next five games, beginning with a matchup with the Memphis Grizzlies on Monday.