Nuggets’ Michael Malone Had Passionate Message About His Team After Game 4 Win

May 12, 2024; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Denver Nuggets head coach Michael Malone directs his team
May 12, 2024; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Denver Nuggets head coach Michael Malone directs his team / Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports
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The Denver Nuggets stormed back from a 2-0 deficit in the Western Conference semifinals to even up the series at two games apiece with Sunday night's 115-107 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves at the Target Center.

Many NBA pundits, such as Charles Barkley, who predicted the Nuggets would get swept by the Timberwolves following Game 2, felt the defending champions were in trouble.

Denver head coach Michael Malone used the talking heads' dismissive predictions as fuel for the Nuggets' Game 3 fire, then doubled down on Denver's never-say-die attitude in a passionate message about his team, which was delivered to reporters during his press conference Sunday night.

"Uh, what I found is that Rudy T [Tomjanovich] is right, man, never underestimate the heart of a champion," Malone said. "They were quick to write us off. But these guys, we won a championship a year ago."

"You know what I mean? We went into Miami and won two games in a row. This team has been tested time and time again and we found a way to solve whatever's been thrown at us."

Malone is likely feeling validated right now, but he made sure to emphasize that the series is far from over. That's a sentiment that Timberwolves star Anthony Edwards, who was seen jawing at Nuggets star guard Jamal Murray after the final buzzer sounded, would certainly agree with.

The all-important Game 5 will take place on Tuesday night at 10:30 p.m. ET at Ball Arena in Denver. Malone has an important message for Nuggets fans before the pivotal contest.

"We came up here trying to get two, we got that," Malone said. "We have home court back, but we have to go home and protect home court. We can't allow them to come in and get a third win at Ball Arena. And that's the message to our fans, to come out and make that place just an absolute zoo."

Tim Capurso


Tim Capurso is a Staff Writer on the Breaking & Trending News Team at Sports Illustrated. Previously he wrote for RotoBaller and ClutchPoints, where he was the lead editor for MLB, College Football and NFL coverage. A lifelong Yankees and Giants fan, Tim grew up just outside New York City and now lives near Philadelphia. When he's not writing, Tim enjoys reading, exercising and spending time with his family, including his three-legged cat Willow, who, unfortunately, is an Eagles fan.