Nuggets Timberwolves game 5: 3 key matchups that could tip the scales

Denver Nuggets v Minnesota Timberwolves - Game Four
Denver Nuggets v Minnesota Timberwolves - Game Four / David Berding/GettyImages
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#2. Mike Conley vs. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope

These two aren’t necessarily guarding each other on every possession, but they play similar roles for their teams. They are both veteran leaders and secondary ball handlers and creators on offense who can contribute timely shooting and scoring while supplying steady defense. 

Neither team is particularly reliant on these guards for scoring, but that would be a huge bonus. Both of these players have the capability of getting hot and helping carry the load offensively for their teams in the kind of way that could swing a game and even a series.

KCP has averaged double-figure scoring in both seasons with the Nuggets, but this series he has just 25 points through four games and he’s hit just three 3-pointers. He’s due for a big game (relatively speaking) where he hits multiple threes. 12-18 points from Caldwell-Pope could easily be the difference in a game.

Conley has had a better series offensively, but he also plays a larger role for his team on that end. Conley had 14 points and 10 assists in game 1 while hitting 3/4 three-point attempts. That kind of boost and efficiency played a massive role for the Wolves. In game four, Conley had 15 points but shot just 5/12 from the field. The Nuggets forced him to be more involved and less efficient.

It feels like one of these players is due to get hot and swing a game with a streaky shooting night. At this point, that one game could be enough to swing the series.