Updated Jun 13, 2023 - Sports

Denver Nuggets win first NBA title after beating Miami Heat in Game 5

A group of men celebrating around a trophy

The Denver Nuggets celebrate with the Larry O'Brien Championship Trophy. Photo: Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

The 47-year wait is over.

Driving the news: The Denver Nuggets are NBA champions for the first time in team history after winning 94-89 Monday night, beating the Miami Heat in five games to clinch the title.

  • It's the team's only title since moving to the NBA in 1976.

How we got here: In the end, it wasn't close: Denver won three of their four games in the Finals by double digits.

  • They suffered their first home loss in the postseason in Game 2 but rebounded by winning two games in Miami.
  • Jamal Murray and Nikola Jokić cemented themselves as arguably the best duo in the NBA when they each recorded a 30 point triple double in Game 3. Something that had never been done before in NBA history.
  • The Nuggets were the number one seed in the West for the first time winning 53 games in the regular season. They finished the postseason with a 16-3 record going 10-1 at home.

The intrigue: Don't forget the role players. Aaron Gordon dropped 27 points to lead all scorers in Game 4. With Jokić in foul trouble in the 4th quarter, Bruce Brown contributed 21 points off the bench.

  • In Game 5, Michael Porter Jr. chipped in 16 points and 13 rebounds.

Between the lines: The victory secures the Mile High City's second major sports title in as many years.

  • It's the seventh championship for Denver in the four major leagues. The Broncos have won three Super Bowls (most recently in 2015-16) and the Avalanche have won three Stanley Cups, with their third coming last year.

The other side: The Heat defied expectations by making a historic postseason run after nearly missing the playoffs, but in the end, had no miracles left.

  • It's what it would've taken to find an answer for Jokić, our Axios Miami colleagues write.

What's next: Celebration time. A spokesperson for Mayor Michael Hancock's office said Kroenke Sports & Entertainment is expected to announce parade details shortly after the win.

Our thought bubble: Back to back championships anyone?

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