Lakers vs. Nuggets final score, results: Denver completes sweep to advance to NBA Finals

Lakers vs. Nuggets final score, results: Denver completes sweep to advance to NBA Finals

For the first time ever, the Nuggets are headed to the NBA Finals. 

Denver completed a sweep over Los Angeles with a thrilling win in Game 4 on Monday night. Superstar center Nikola Jokic came up clutch with 30 points, 14 rebounds and 13 assists, including the game-winning bucket with less than a minute remaining. 

LeBron James seemed poised to steal the headlines after dropping 31 points in the first half. It helped the Lakers take a commanding 15-point halftime lead. But Denver fought back, outscoring LA 36-16 in the third quarter to wrest control of the game. 

A chaotic ending culminated with a bizarre sequence in the final minute. With the Nuggets leading by two, James tossed up a difficult attempt as the shot clock expired. It hit the side of the backboard and never touched the rim, but no whistle came from the officials for a shot clock violation. Michael Porter Jr. then appeared to travel, but again the officials let play continue. 

James ultimately had his last-second shot blocked by Aaron Gordon to snuff out any lingering hopes of a title in his 20th NBA season.

The Nuggets will now move on to play for an NBA championship. Their likely opponent will be the Heat, who hold a 3-0 series lead over the Celtics in the Eastern Conference Finals. That series will begin on June 1, leaving a long break before Denver returns to the floor. 

MORE: Full schedule for 2023 NBA Finals

The Sporting News was tracking all the key moments from Game 4 of the 2023 Western Conference Finals. 

Lakers vs. Nuggets score

Team1234Final
Lakers34393622111
Nuggets28301619113

Lakers vs. Nuggets live score, updates, highlights from Game 4

11:22 p.m. β€” Mayhem in the Mile High City.

11:16 p.m. β€” LeBron’s last ditch effort is blocked by Gordon as time expires, and Denver hangs on for a wild 113-111 win! The sweep is complete!

11:15 p.m. FINAL β€” IT’S OVER. For the first time in franchise history, the Nuggets are going to the NBA Finals!

11:12 p.m. β€” Very strange sequence there. LeBron threw up a wild attempt as the shot clock ran down that hit the side of the backboard. Everyone stopped for a moment due to a presumed shot clock violation, but the clock never stopped. After a moment of confusion, the Nuggets took it up the floor and Murray missed a shot. The Lakers got a rebound and called timeout, and they’ll have one last chance to keep their season alive. 

11:09 p.m. β€” Jokic lays it up and in to give the Nuggets the lead! The Lakers take their time on the ensuing possession, and a pass is tipped out of bounds with 31.1 seconds left on the game clock. Darvin Ham takes a timeout. His team will have just 3.6 seconds to get a shot up after this inbound pass. 

11:08 p.m. β€” Davis gets sent right back to the line after a foul call on Gordon, and he coolly makes both to tie it up at 111 apiece. As the clock ticks under one minute, a loose ball scramble ends with the Nuggets retaining possession.

11:05 p.m. β€” Gordon makes one of two free throws, then Davis responds by making a pair at the other end. Jokic throws up yet another wild shot at the tail end of the shot clock, but this time it’s way off the mark. The Lakers trail by two points with a minute and a half left. 

11:01 p.m. β€” NIKOLA JOKIC. That is just outrageous. The Serbian throws up another prayer as the shot clock expires and again he hits nothing but net! That triple makes it 110-104, but Reaves answers at the other end with a three of his own. With 2:01 left in the game, Denver leads by three points. 

10:59 p.m. β€” Gordon throws down a huge dunk, plus a foul! That gives him an opportunity for a three-point play to put his team up six points with 3:34 remaining! LeBron has been very quiet this half after his first half explosion, and he quite frankly looks exhausted out there. 

10:56 p.m. β€” Davis fouls Murray on a three-point attempt to send him to the charity stripe. He sinks all three to give the Nuggets a 105-102 lead with less than five minutes left on the clock. 

10:51 p.m. β€” Jokic just picked up his fourth and fifth fouls after being called for offensive charges on back-to-back possessions. On the very next Lakers possession, Davis throws down a slam tie it back up at 102-102! That’s a huge momentum swing in favor of LA!

10:47 p.m. β€” D’Angelo Russell knocks down a midrange jumper to briefly tie it up, but Bruce Brown answers at the other end for the Nuggets. A few minutes later, Anthony Davis comes up with a bucket and a big block at the other end to cut the deficit to just two points. Denver still leads, 100-98. 

10:43 p.m. β€” Tristan Thompson has been out there an awful lot considering he didn’t play a single minute of regular season basketball this year. Still, he’s holding his own, and he just got a dunk to start off the fourth quarter.

10:38 p.m. END OF THIRD QUARTER β€” The penultimate quarter ends with the Nuggets leading the Lakers, 94-89. Can LA save its season with a late rally?

10:26 p.m. β€” Now Aaron Gordon can’t miss! The Nuggets forward just buried a three in Davis’ face to make it 91-87 in favor of Denver. This has been such a resilient performance by them in the second half. 

10:18 p.m. β€” Caldwell-Pope banks in a tough and-one, and just like that, the Nuggets have the lead! That was fast. it took less than eight minutes for Denver to turn this game on its head. Jokic also just broke Wilt Chamberlain’s record for most playoff triple-doubles in a single postseason. He now has eight in this year’s playoffs. 

10:13 p.m. β€” Jokic is starting to take over here early in this second half. He gets another bucket and then draws a foul on a three point shot after Hachimura came flying in recklessly. He makes all three free throws to take his total to ten points in just five minutes this quarter. The Nuggets still trail by three, however. 

10:07 p.m. β€” The Nuggets have started the third quarter on a 9-2 run. Anthony Davis, who has been quiet tonight with 9 points, got called for a defensive three second violation and Murray sank the free throws. After a great Jokic block one on end, he lays it in on the other to make it 75-67 Lakers. 

10:04 p.m. START OF SECOND HALF β€” We are underway in the second half and Jokic quickly knocks down a midrange shot to open the scoring. 

9:52 p.m. β€” The Nuggets need to figure out some way to stop LeBron if they want to end this series tonight. Murray leads the team with 15 points, while Jokic has 10 points, 8 assists and 5 rebounds. 

9:46 p.m. END OF FIRST HALF β€” LeBron James finishes the first half with 31 points after playing all but the final three seconds. He is absolutely locked in right now, and his team holds a commanding 73-58 lead because of it. 

9:43 p.m. β€” Malone just gave the officials an earful after a foul call went against Jokic, and it was enough to earn him a technical foul. He was heated. The ensuing free throws make it 71-58 with less than a minute remaining in the quarter.  

9:37 p.m. β€” Hachimura has given the Lakers a real spark in this one. The man from Japan just converted a pair of buckets to reach 10 points on the night and make it 63-51 in favor of the home team. 

9:31 p.m. β€” James gets a tip-in to make it 55-43 in favor of the Lakers, and Michael Malone takes a timeout to try and slow the momentum. Los Angeles holds a 12-point lead, its largest of the series, with 5:18 left in the first half. 

9:28 p.m. β€” Schroder knocks down his third three-pointer of the night to extend LA’s lead to ten points! As a team, the Lakers are shooting an impressive 7 of 11 (63.6 percent) from deep. 

9:23 p.m. β€” With the shot clock winding down, Jokic heaves up a Hail Mary step-back three and somehow gets it to go! That is just a ridiculous shot. James and Gordon then get into a scuffle on the ensuing possession and a double-technical is assessed. But things simmer down quickly and we play on. 

9:19 p.m. β€” Thompson has actually delivered some quality minutes here, throwing down a transition slam after a nice dish from James. The Lakers have extended their lead to 43-33. 

9:14 p.m. β€” The second quarter begins with Tristan Thompson checking into the game in place of Davis. The veteran center was signed by LA towards the end of the regular season as a depth option, but his head coach is trusting him in an important situation here. 

9:10 p.m. END OF FIRST QUARTER β€” The Lakers hold a six-point advantage after one quarter. James has 21 of his team’s 34 points. Just an amazing performance so far by the 38-year-old.  

9:08 p.m. β€” He can’t be stopped! James buries yet another shot from beyond the arc and he now has 21 points β€” a new playoff career-high for his most points in a quarter! 

9:04 p.m. β€” Wow, what a start for LeBron James! Another three takes his tally up to 18 points on the night… And we still have a minute left in the first quarter.

8:58 p.m. β€” LeBron buries another triple and he is already up to 12 points on the night. But another three by KCP makes it 23-20 Lakers as we head into a timeout. 

8:56 p.m. β€” LeBron just overhanded a lob pass intended for Hachimura and it went straight in for an unlikely three! Just how he drew it up.

8:52 p.m. β€” LA’s lead is quickly cut to just two points after Caldwell-Pope knocks down back-to-back threes β€” including a four-point play following a foul. Very hot start for him tonight. After a tip-in by Gordon’s we are tied at 13-13. 

8:47 p.m. β€” Austin Reaves lays it in on the fast break, then Hachimura throws down a transition dunk to bring there crowd at Crypto.com Arena to its feet. The Lakers are off to a nice start, and they lead 11-4. 

8:44 p.m. β€” LeBron James gets the ball on a long pass from Davis and goes for a slam, but Michael Porter Jr. comes in at the last second and fouls him from behind. James took a hard fall and there’s a brief review to see whether it was a flagrant, but the officials decide it was a standard foul. 

8:42 p.m. START OF GAME β€” The Lakers control the opening tip and we are underway. The Nuggets have missed a few good looks from beyond the arc early, while an Anthony Davis bucket has given LA the lead in the opening minutes.

8:40 p.m. β€” We’re all set for tip-off from the City of Angels. Can the Lakers stave off elimination with a home win?

8:33 p.m. β€” No surprises from the Nuggets, who will use their usual starting five of Jamal Murray, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Michael Porter Jr., Aaron Gordon and two-time MVP Nikola Jokic. 

8:31 p.m. β€” It’s official. Hachimura and Dennis Schroder will both start in Game 4.

8:14 p.m. β€” Nuggets star Jamal Murray was out there showing off the range in pregame warmups.

8:07 p.m. β€” With Los Angeles facing a 3-0 deficit, some Lakers fans might see that lineup change as too little, too late from head coach Darvin Ham. Hachimura has averaged 12.3 points and 3.4 rebounds in 23.1 minutes per game this postseason.

8:02 p.m. β€” Some interesting news out of the Lakers’ camp. Rui Hachimura is reportedly set to start tonight for the first time this postseason, per TNT’s Chris Haynes. He replaces forward Jarred Vanderbilt in the starting five. 

What channel is Lakers vs. Nuggets on?

  • Date: Monday, May 22
  • TV channel: ESPN
  • Live stream: Sling TV

Game 4 of Lakers vs. Nuggets will air on ESPN. Mike Breen will handle play-by-play duties alongside analysts Mark Jackson and Jeff Van Gundy. Lisa Salters will report from the sideline.

Viewers in the United States can also stream Lakers vs. Nuggets on Sling TV.

Fans in the U.S. can watch the NBA Playoffs on Sling TV, which is now offering $10 off your first month! Stream the sports you love starting at just $30 in your first month with Sling Orange to catch all the games on TNT, ESPN & ABC. For games on NBA TV, subscribe to Sling Orange & Sports Extra for $27.50 in your first month. Local regional blackout restrictions apply.

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What time is Lakers vs. Nuggets tonight?

  • Date: Monday, May 22
  • Time: 8:30 p.m. ET | 5:30 p.m. PT

Game 4 of Lakers vs. Nuggets will tip off around 8:30 p.m. ET (5:30 p.m. local time) on Monday, May 22. The game will be played at Crypto.com Arena in Los Angeles.

Lakers vs. Nuggets odds

Despite facing a 3-0 series deficit, Los Angeles enters Monday’s Game 4 as a 3.5-point favorite.

 LakersNuggets
Spread-3.5+3.5
Moneyline-165+135

For the full market, check out BetMGM.

Lakers vs. Nuggets schedule

Here is the complete schedule for the 2023 Western Conference Finals:

DateGameTime (ET)TV channel
May 16Nuggets 132, Lakers 1268:30 p.m.ESPN
May 18Nuggets 108, Lakers 1038:30 p.m.ESPN
May 20Nuggets 119, Lakers 1088:30 p.m.ABC
May 22Game 48:30 p.m. at LakersESPN
May 24Game 5*8:30 p.m. at NuggetsESPN
May 26Game 6*8:30 p.m. at LakersESPN
May 28Game 7*8:30 p.m. at NuggetsESPN

*If necessary