Camby Dominates on Both Ends, Denver Wins
Denver 125, Atlanta 116
DENVER, Dec. 6 (Ticker) -- Marcus Camby continues to control both ends of the floor for the Denver Nuggets.
Camby collected 24 points, 12 rebounds and five blocks, including a pair of swats in the final minute that helped the Nuggets escape with a 125-116 victory over the Atlanta Hawks.
The 6-11 Camby is enjoying the best season of his 10-year career. The former second overall pick is averaging personal bests in points (16.9), rebounds (14.1) and steals (1.76). He leads the NBA in rebounding and is second in blocked shots (63).
"I was in the right place at the right time," Camby said. "I guess he didn't see me. I was able to block it and keep it in play. We were able to group and get a fast-break basket from the block."
"We were right there," Hawks coach Mike Woodson said. "We had a chance to tie and Camby makes a block and they never looked back."
Atlanta's Al Harrington, who scored a season-high 35 points, tried a driving layup on the next possession, but Camby again came up with a block that led to a fast break. Andre Miller, who had 21 points and a season-best 14 assists, finished that break with a layup that made it 123-116 with 39 seconds to go.
"Is Marcus Camby not fun to watch?" Denver coach George Karl asked. "He's one of the few players in basketball right now that I would pay money to watch. Only problem I'm worried about is I might be playing a few too many minutes. I'd like to get him more rest."
Atlanta, which was blown out on Sunday night at Phoenix, appeared to be in for another long night after the Nuggets opened a 24-10 lead midway through the first quarter. A quick 8-0 run by the Hawks set the tone for the remainder of the game, with the Nuggets unable to put away the Hawks until the closing minute.
"We played hard and competed," Harrington said. "We always come out and fight but we got to start winning these games. We were close - right there - but luck is not coming our way right now."
Atlanta, which fell to 0-13 against the Western Conference this season, pulled into at 88-88 tie as Tyronn Lue scored eight points in a 14-6 spurt.
Miller scored 15 points in the fourth quarter for Denver (10-9), which shot a season-high 59 percent (44-of-75) from the field.
"We didn't play like we should have," Miller said. "It was basically an offensive game with no defense, but we got the win."
"Our mentality was to outshoot them and I think that almost caused us to lose the game," Karl said. "It was a wild and crazy, free and loose, but fortunately we got the win."
Kenyon Martin scored nine points in 14 minutes but did not play in the second half due to injury.
Lue scored 16 points while Childress and Royal Ivey added 14 apiece for the Hawks, who have lost six in a row and sport a league-worst 2-15 record.