Last offseason, after a disappointing second-round playoff exit, Jamal Murray went to Denver Nuggets head coach Michael Malone and told him it bugged him when Malone called him an inconsistent player.
“He said, ‘What bothers me is that you’re right. I know I need to be more consistent,'” Malone recalled Tuesday night after the Nuggets’ series-saving 114-106 win over the Los Angeles Lakers in Game 3 of the Western Conference Finals.
That hasn’t been the case in the bubble, where Murray and Nikola Jokic powered the Nuggets back from 3-1 deficits in two consecutive playoff series to reach their first conference finals since 2009. For Murray, that run included two 50-point games in the first round against the Utah Jazz and a 40-point performance in Game 7 of the second round against the Los Angeles Clippers.