Anthony Stars as Nuggets Cool Clippers
Denver 105, L.A. Clippers 95
DENVER, Nov. 25 (Ticker) -- The Los Angeles Clippers headed into the Mile High City feeling just that. Carmelo Anthony sent them back home feeling low.
Anthony scored a season-high 35 points as the Denver Nuggets won their sixth straight home game, a 105-95 triumph over the Clippers.
Although all five starters scored in double figures Friday, the Clippers were no match for the Nuggets, who held a 31-13 advantage in fast-break points.
"I thought Carmelo was sensational for the whole game," Nuggets coach George Karl said. "The second half might have be his best basketball he played this year."
"I tried to focus a little bit more," said Anthony, who made 11-of-17 shots and 12-of-14 free throws. "It was a good win, especially with the Clippers being one of the hottest teams this year and (us) getting thrashed in Detroit (on Wednesday night)."
The Clippers took a 52-51 lead into the half behind 16 points from Cuttino Mobley. They would not see the lead again after the Nuggets opened up the half with a 13-2 run, led by Kenyon Martin's six points.
"We came out in the third quarter just did not execute," Clippers coach Mike Dunleavy Sr. said. "We dug us a 10-point (hole) and then you're digging from behind all night long."
Martin was playing in his second straight game after missing four games in a row with tendinitis in his left knee. He played 25 minutes and scored 16 points
"I felt good," Martin said. "The little plan we came up with to rest my knee has been good. If I'm not playing for too long or sitting for too long, then I can be productive."
The Clippers, who dropped their third straight to the Nuggets, cut the deficit to 74-71 with 4:32 remaining in the period.
Denver seemingly took control of the game during an 18-5 burst as Eduardo Najera scored six points, including a layup that made it 92-76 with 10:52 to go.
"I think their offense was a little of out sync at time during the game," Karl said. "They were not sure at times who was supposed to take the shots. I think our defense had something to do with that."
"We did things that didn't allow us to win the game," Clippers guard Sam Cassell said. "We did everything wrong. We couldn't get entry passes. We couldn't get our deflections. We had breakdowns offensively."
Najera came off the bench to score nine points in 32 minutes. The defensive specialist played extended minutes with center Marcus Camby sitting out for the first time this season with a leg injury.
"You know the first night a guy is out, whoever is going to get a chance to step up is going to step up," Dunleavy said. "We just didn't make them pay the price."
Los Angeles stormed back late and cut the deficit to 95-91 with 3:04 left on a layup by Elton Brand, who collected his seventh straight double-double with 22 points and 11 rebounds.
However, Denver put away the game by scoring the next six points. Anthony finished the charge with an alley-oop dunk off a pass from Andre Miller, who had 15 points and seven assists.