Notebook: Nuggets 117, Knicks 94



Posted Mar 14, 2013 2:32 AM

Michael Kelly, for NBA.com

THE FACTS: Carmelo Anthony had a memorable homecoming, but it wasn't the kind he hoped for.

Anthony's first game in Denver since being traded to New York two years ago was forgettable after the Nuggets ran the Knicks out of the building. Wilson Chandler had 24 points, Danilo Gallinari scored 16 and Denver rolled to a 117-94 win Wednesday night in front of a national TV audience.

Anthony finished with nine points in one of his worst performances of the season. Ian Shumpert led the Knicks with 20 and J.R. Smith, another former Nugget, had 15.

Six Denver players scored in double figures. Kenneth Faried had 11 points and 10 rebounds for the Nuggets, who put this one away with a big second quarter.

QUOTABLE: "In the first quarter it was a five-, six-point game and then they started pounding us. We gave up too many buckets at the rim. They were pushing it and we were terrible in getting back."
-- Knicks coach Mike Woodson

THE STAT: The Nuggets dominated everywhere, but especially on the boards. They held a 31-15 edge at halftime and finished the game with a 53-33 advantage in rebounding.

TURNING POINT: The Nuggets turned a close game into a laugher early in the second quarter. Smith hit a jumper to cut the lead to 33-30 and the Knicks didn't hit another until Tyson Chandler's bucket 7:22 later. In the drought they missed nine straight shots and had four turnovers. The Nuggets, on the other hand, went on a 25-3 run to take a 58-33 lead.

QUOTABLE II: "We got the perfect lineup in. They tried to open the court up with Melo at the [power forward] and we have a pretty good lineup for that. With Wilson comes in and we're able to run. Probably every position we can outrun them."
-- Nuggets guard Andre Iguodala

HOT: The Nuggets as a team. They've won 10 straight, 14 in a row at home and have scored at least 100 points in 23 of their last 24 games.

NOT: Anthony has struggled in the two games he has played since missing three with a sore right knee. He is 7-for-27 form the field and has missed all seven of his 3-pointers. In those two games Anthony has scored 23 points, 4.9 less than his season average. He left early in the third quarter because of his knee. The Knicks are sending him back to New York instead of going to Portland, where they are playing the third game of a five-game road trip.

QUOTABLE III: "I think it was just time for me to give it time to get to the bottom of it. I'm going to get it drained. At this point that's all it is, getting it drained. I was being naïve to myself and trying to psyche myself out saying, 'I can do it, I can do it.' It just comes to a point you have to figure it out."
-- Carmelo Anthony

FANTASY SPOTLIGHT: Wilson Chandler has been up and down offensively, but when he's on he shoots for a high percentage. Wednesday he was 9-for-12 from the field.

INSIDE THE ARENA: Anthony's name was called last when New York's starting lineup was announced and he was greeted with more boos than cheers. When the game started Anthony was booed every time he touched the ball. As the game came to a close the fans remaining began chanting "Who needs Melo?" for one final salute to the former Denver superstar.

QUOTABLE IV: "I think it's time to let everything go. It was probably too long in getting it [the game] here. There's a portion that's going to dislike Melo and there's a portion that's going to love Melo, but the majority people hopefully are excited about the team we have at hand."
-- Nuggets coach George Karl

GOOD MOVE: The Nuggets attacked the basket with abandon, creating easy baskets and drawing fouls. New York committed 21 fouls and the Nuggets shot 26 more free throws than them.

BAD MOVE: Tyson Chandler went down holding his left knee after colliding with Corey Brewer under New York's basket with 1:28 left in the first half. The collision appeared to buckle Chandler's knee and he was helped off the court and to the locker room. He suffered a contusion on the knee and did not return. He will stay with the team and is probable for the game in Portland on Thursday.

NOTABLE: The Knicks didn't shoot their first free throw of the game until there was 4:28 left in the second quarter. ... Gallinari's first 3-pointer of the game was the 500th of his career. ... The Nuggets are 100-57 since trading Anthony on Feb. 22, 2011. In the 157 games prior to the trade they were 99-58.

UP NEXT: For the Knicks, Thursday @ Portland, Sunday @ L.A. Cippers, Monday @ Utah. For the Nuggets, Friday @ Memphis, Monday @ Chicago, Tuesday @ Oklahoma City.