Recap: Denver offense struggles as 76ers thrash Nuggets 97-71


The Denver Nuggets took on the Philadelphia 76ers and it was far from a contest today. Philly led wire to wire as Denver’s offense couldn’t find the back of the net, while the 76ers couldn’t miss. Denver shot 35% from the field and 27% from three while the 76ers shot 48% from the field and 42% from deep. Philly had five double figure guys with Grant Riller as the leading scorer with 18 points. Denver was just two in double digits, with the top scorer being Mbaye N’Diaye who was just 9 minutes behind but impressive with 12 points.

Denver’s top picks struggled again today. Christian Braun eventually finished his three-point draft with two threes, but he shot 4-11 from the field with 4 turnovers. He had 6 assists and 6 rebounds, so he showed his ability to produce without scoring the basketball, which is a great sign for Denver. Peyton Watson scored 2 points on 1-7 shooting with 2 turnovers, and even regular Collin Gillespie struggled with 5 points on 2-9 shooting from the field and 0-5 from three.


1st trimester

  • Denver’s first three possessions resulted in turnovers, with one leading to a jam from Bassey at the other end. Charlie Brown Jr. then knocked down a three-ball combined with a Justin Smith dunk, but Collin Gillespie finished the short run with a mid-range jumper.
  • Trevelin Queen hit a deep three for Philadelphia’s 10-2 lead, and after three straight missed shots for Denver, Peyton Watson converted a floater on an offensive rebound from Braun. Queen was then fouled on a three-point attempt as he made all three attempts
  • Denver’s offense was absolutely anemic. They started 2-15 from the field and 0-5 from three while the 76ers shot 5-8 from the field and 2-4 from three as they took an early 15-4 advantage.
  • The Nugget’s defense tightened late in the quarter, but their offense remained stagnant. They lacked movement on the perimeter and continually dribbled aimlessly. When Gillespie hit one of two free throws at 2:36, it ended a four-minute scoreless streak
  • Adonis Arms hit a floater on his first action of the night, but it was immediately countered with a three from Grant Riller. A minute later, Riller would punch three more, but Arms would end the quarter with another floater

Score: 22-9 76ers

Scoring leaders: Riller/Queen – 6, Arms – 4

Photo by Bart Young/NBAE via Getty Images

2nd trimester

  • Riller and Foster Jr. have added five straight Philly games to open the quarter. Marcus Burk finally scored for Denver when he knocked down a three, but Riller continued his hot game with a layup
  • Riller added a falling midrange jumper as they increased their lead to 31-11. Matt Mitchell scored his first points of the ball game with a soft bank shot from mid-range
  • Isaiah Joe hit two straight threes with a Matt Mitchell three through the middle, but the 76ers continued to roll with a Brown Jr. triple as Philly secured their biggest lead of the game at 41-17.
  • Queen had three more for Philly as they started to go 7-12 from three-pointers. Arms tied it with a three of his own, then Braun finished his three-point draft with a deep triple
  • Justin Smith then converted a layup, but Braun drilled his second straight three on an assist from Gillespie. Smith added an alley-oop dunk after another Nugget turnover

Score: 48-27 76ers

Scoring counts: Riller – 13, Arms – 8

3rd trimester

  • Queen introduced the quarterback with a wide open dunk, but the Nuggets would respond with four straight transition points from Braun. Joe countered with a deep triple, then Kamagate scored his first points with a hook shot and a
  • Smith, Queen and Brown Jr. combined for seven straight games for Philly as they increased their lead 61-34. Jack White scored a layup after a Denver timeout, but Philly remained relentless with another triple from Joe
  • About two minutes of scoreless basketball passed until Joe and Queen scored five straight games for Philly. Gillespie then drove to the rim for a layup, but the 76ers lead held steady at 69-38
  • Again, the Nuggets went about two more minutes without a basket until Burks’ layup. Jack White would add another layup, but Aminu Mohammed tied it with a layup, and Riller finished the quarter with a floater

Score: 73-43 76ers

Score leaders: Queen – 17, Braun – 11

NBA Summer League 2022 - Philadelphia 76ers vs. Denver Nuggets

Photo by Bart Young/NBAE via Getty Images

4th trimester

  • Jontay Porter had a three to open the quarter, but after a Philadelphia offensive rebound, Foster Jr. put it back for two. Braun then assisted a Jack White dunk, but what would a Denver bucket be without a quick response from Philly as Mohammed converted a layup
  • Bryce Wills made a good driving layup and followed it up with a deep triple. Julian Champagnie responded with a midrange bucket and Mohammed added another dunk for Philadelphia’s 83-53 advantage
  • Mbaye N’Diaye scored a transition dunk for his first points on an assist from Braun. N’Diaye and Riller exchanged baskets, then N’Diaye continued his hot game with a nice three, but Mohammed tied it with his own triple
  • Drake Jeffries drilled a three as the Nuggets eventually reached 25. It was short-lived as Mohammed made one of two free throws, and Fred Sims Jr. made two straight threes for Philly with a Jeffries a makes three in between.

Score: 97-71 76ers

Leaders: Riller – 18, N’Diaye – 12