Anthony Nails Trey to Lift Nuggets in OT
Denver 102, Minnesota 101 (OT)
MINNEAPOLIS, Feb. 24 (Ticker) -- Denver Nuggets superstar Carmelo Anthony made sure the Minnesota Timberwolves continued their overtime struggles.
Anthony scored 30 points, including the game winning 3-pointer with three seconds remaining, as the Nuggets squeezed out a 102-101 victory over the Timberwolves, who has dropped to 0-4 in overtime games.
"This is a big road win for us," Anthony said. "It's a extra-big win for us. It's a (Northwest) division game and the division games you always want to win. These are the types of games that are going to come down to the end of the season for us we're going to have to win these games."
DerMarr Johnson nailed a 3-pointer, giving the Nuggets a 99-95 edge with 57 seconds to go in overtime. After a turnover by Anthony, Trenton Hassell found Kevin Garnett for an alley-oop dunk that tied the game.
Kenyon Martin's lazy inbounds pass to Andre Miller led to a steal by Ricky Davis, who drained a pull-up jumper with six seconds left for a 101-99 edge.
"I threw it away," said Martin, who had 18 points and nine rebounds. "I thought Andre was going to stop and hold his position, so I tried to lead him, but he didn't. I tried to put it out of my mind, but I couldn't. But Carmelo bailed me out, and I told him, 'Thank you.'"
Coming out of a timeout, Anthony made a tough shot from the left corner over Hassell for a one-point advantage.
"I think that was the best of any big shot I've hit, most likely," Anthony said. "I didn't have nothing to do but to shoot. Trenton pushed up on me and so I have nothing to do but shoot the ball."
"We were supposed to foul, but he pump-faked me and I didn't want to put him on the line for three shots," said Hassell, who scored eight points. "Maybe I should have grabbed him and took my chances putting him on the line. I'll do it next time."
Garnett had a chance to win it but misfired on Minnesota's final possession.
Davis converted on a rare four-point play with just under six minutes left in regulation to tie the game at 81-81. Marcus Camby and Kenyon Martin scored back-to-back baskets to knot the game with 2:35 left.
Garnett's 19-footer gave the Timberwolves an 88-85 bulge before Anthony made a jumper and Andre Miller split a pair of free throws, making it 88-88 with 45 seconds to go. Camby and Garnett both had chances to win it in regulation but missed.
"Down the stretch we have a foul to give, we should have taken the foul in the corner (on Anthony)," Minnesota coach Dwane Casey said. "But that was not the difference between winning and losing. We had a couple of opportunities at the end of the game and again and at the end of overtime."
Miller had 19 points and 13 assists and Johnson added 17 points for the Nuggets, who shot 46 percent (42-of-91) from the floor and made 9-of-22 3-pointers.
Denver dressed only eight players due to Thursday's four-team trade that brought Ruben Patterson and Charles Smith from Portland and Reggie Evans from Seattle. All three sat on the bench and cheered in street clothes.
"We played a great game under difficult circumstances," Nuggets coach George Karl said. "This is one of those fight games. We didn't have a lot of gas in the tank and we made some mental turnovers that weren't in our character. But Carmelo's a great player who makes great shots. Big players make tough shots and he had the courage to take it, and now we're happy because he did."
Garnett collected 23 points and 15 rebounds and Davis and Marcus Banks scored 19 points apiece for Minnesota, which shot 43 percent (38-of-87).
"We've been snakebitten a lot this year," said Garnett, who made 8-of-21 shots. "It was a difficult game. It's the league, anything can happen. (Carmelo) hit a tough, tough Powerball shot. It's like winning the Lotto and like those people who worked for the meat factory, they hit the Lotto."