NBA - Denver Nuggets v Miami Heat

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Denver Nuggets v Miami Heat

2022-23 NBA Finals

Game 1
Friday, 2 June 2023
Ball Arena
Denver, Colorado
Tip-off at 02:30  
Denver Nuggets head coach Michael Malone isn't putting much stock in history ahead of the Miami Heat's visit to the Ball Arena in Game 1 of the NBA Finals on the morning of Friday, June 2.
The Nuggets will have had 10 days' rest by the time they host the Heat after blitzing the Los Angeles Lakers 4-0 in the Western Conference Finals.
It is only the fourth time in two decades that a team has got that long a break before the Finals and history shows those playing at home in Game 1 after such a long rest period have a record of 8-1 (.889 winning percentage).

Michael Malone
Image copyright: Getty Images
It is vastly better than the overall 58-18 record for Game 1 hosts (.763 winning percentage), but Malone doesn't believe it gives them any sort of edge over Miami, who were taken to Game 7 by the Boston Celtics in the Eastern Conference Finals.
"For us, my biggest concern is the rhythm but more importantly conditioning," he said on Denver's return to practice.
"You're playing every other day for so long, and now all of a sudden you have an eight-, nine-, 10-day break, whatever it is. I wanted to make sure we got up and down, conditioned."
The Nuggets won both games against the Heat during the regular season, triumphing 124-119 in Colorado on December 30 and 112-108 in Florida on February 13.
Nikola Jokic led the charge on both occasions, registering  27 points, 12 rebounds and eight assists on the road after his triple-double at home (19-12-12). 

Denver Nuggets v Miami Heat - Head-to-head, Regular Season

Games played: 72
Nuggets wins: 38
Heat wins: 34

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Published: 06/01/2023