Nuggets nightmare continues for Warriors who miss opportunity to rise up West standings

Denver Nuggets v Golden State Warriors
Denver Nuggets v Golden State Warriors / Thearon W. Henderson/GettyImages

The Golden State Warriors' recent record against the Denver Nuggets continues to spiral out of control, with the visitors closing out a 4-0 season sweep behind a 119-103 victory at Chase Center on Sunday.

Entering with a 10-2 record over their last 12 games, Sunday's meeting provided an opportunity for the Warriors to reinforce their surge back into the playoff picture. Golden State had risen to ninth in the Western Conference thanks to the Los Angeles Lakers' loss earlier on Sunday, but they couldn't take advantage after a bright start.

The Golden State Warriors' recent momentum has hit a roadblock after a double-digit loss to the Denver Nuggets at Chase Center

A scorching hot Klay Thompson led the Warriors to a 16-point lead in the second-quarter, with the veteran sharpshooter providing a scoring explosion of 23 points on 7-of-10 shooting in the first-half.

But despite holding all the momentum for most of the first 21 minutes, Golden State's good work quickly evaporated thanks to a 14-0 Denver run across the final three minutes of the second period. All of a sudden the game was tied at 61 by the main interval, proving a game-changing stretch that the Warriors would find hard to reconcile with.

The Nuggets' push continued in the third where they built a double-digit lead of their own behind a 28-4 extended run. Overcoming that kind of stretch is hard against any opponent, let alone the reigning champions led by a two-time MVP in Nikola Jokic who racked up a triple-double well within three-quarters.

The Warriors battled on and pulled the differential back to four entering the final period, but with Thompson having cooled down and Stephen Curry well held by Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, the hosts struggled to find offense across the second-half.

Jonathan Kuminga was almost a solo source of offense in the fourth, repeatedly getting to the free-throw line to finish with 19 points on 5-of-10 shooting and 9-of-13 from the charity stripe. Yet his production always felt far more difficult than the prolific two-man game of Jokic and Jamal Murray who continued to execute their offense down the stretch.

Despite Draymond Green's best efforts, Jokic still finished with a mammoth 32 points, 16 rebounds and 16 assists, while Murray added 27 points on 9-of-16 shooting including 3-of-5 from three-point range.

In contrast, Curry had just 20 points on 6-of-19 shooting and 1-of-10 from beyond the arc. Thompson too went scoreless after half-time, with the Warriors limited to 42 points in the second-half and 43.2% shooting overall for the game. Golden State didn't help themselves with 17 turnovers, having come after a mistake-ridden win over the Charlotte Hornets on Friday.

The Nuggets have now won their last seven regular-season games over the Warriors, as well as 10 of the past 11 in what's becoming a one-sided rivalry over the past two seasons. Golden State now return to the 10th-seed ahead of a four-game road-trip starting with the Washington Wizards on Tuesday.