Miller, Camby Close Out Win vs. Blazers
Denver 105, Portland 104
DENVER, Feb. 4 (Ticker) -- The Denver Nuggets kept on wasting opportunities until Andre Miller took matters into his own hands.
Miller stole the ball from rookie Jarrett Jack and converted a fast-break layup with 4.3 seconds remaining as the Nuggets snapped a four-game losing streak with a 105-104 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers.
"Getting this win was a relief," said Miller, who missed all four of his free throws in the final period and finished with 10 points. "Especially after missing all those free throws in the fourth quarter."
The poor performance from the line allowed Portland to build a 97-88 lead with 5:43 remaining. However, Anthony and Camby scored four points apiece during an 11-2 burst that forged a 99-99 tie with just under two minutes left.
Zach Randolph, who had 28 points and 12 rebounds, responded by scoring five straight points over the next 45 seconds, giving Portland a 104-99 lead.
But Anthony changed the momentum with a thunderous dunk over Theo Ratliff on the other end and hit the ensuing free throw to cut the deficit to 104-102.
"'Melo was huge tonight," Camby said. "Our crowd was big, too. They gave us a lot of energy in that fourth quarter. They were into the game and gave us a big lift."
"We gave them the game," Randolph said. "We had it under control the whole time and then just gave it to them. We completely beat ourselves."
Najera was unable to tie it, making just 1-of-2 from the line.
Portland gave Denver another chance to move in front when Camby stole Juan Dixon's weak cross-court pass, but Camby gave the ball right back by throwing it out of bounds.
"I was really upset after the turnover," Camby said. "I thought I had Andre and I was trying to lead him so he could get a layup. (Miller) ended up making a great play, though, and getting the game-winner."
Jack attempted to bring the ball up and run down the shot clock, but Miller got his hand on the ball and coasted in for an easy layup at the other end.
"I was going to foul him at first, but I got a hand in there and stole the ball," Miller said. "All I was thinking was to make the layup after I got it."
Camby made up for his earlier miscue by blocking Ruben Patterson's potential game-winning 3-pointer at the buzzer.
"They never gave up," Dixon said. "We had that game won easily, but they fought back hard. That is two in a row we have given up to those guys."
Patterson scored 14 points off the bench and Dixon added 13 for the Blazers, who opened a seven-game road trip.
"We didn't handle the pressure tonight," Blazers coach Nate McMillan said. "We had total breakdowns on both ends of the court."