CLEVELAND, OH -- The Cleveland Cavaliers welcomed a Denver Nuggets squad that is a top tier team in the Western Conference. Denver opened the game punching the Cavaliers in the mouth, but the Cavs showed their grit with a massive comeback to force overtime in front of the Cleveland fans. In a tie game with under 30 seconds to go, Darius Garland secured an offensive rebound and found an open Lauri Markkanen at the top of the arc for a go-ahead 3-ball. The Cavaliers went on to secure a 119-116 win over the visiting Nuggets.
Lauri Markkanen led the charge for the Cavaliers on Friday night,. dropping a season high 31 points on 11-18 shooting, including 10 boards. Cavaliers rookie forward Evan Mobley lit up the Nuggets for 27 points and 11 rebounds.
With Friday night's victory over the Nuggets, the Cavaliers move to a record of 40-30, and will prepare for the PIstons on the second night of a back-to-back. Tip-off is set for 8:00 pm ET at the Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse in Cleveland, Ohio.