Nuggets hang on to beat Cavs
Denver, CO (Sports Network) – Marcus Camby scored 26 points and pulled down
17 rebounds, helping Denver race out to a big lead before holding on for a
110-99 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Allen Iverson added 25 points and nine assists for the Nuggets, who have won
back-to-back contests for just the second time since the former 76er came to
the Mile High City. J.R. Smith ended with 14 points and Linas Kleiza 12 for
Denver, which beat the Cavs for the seventh time in the last 10 meetings.
The Nuggets have Saturday night’s contest at Houston remaining before they get
star Carmelo Anthony back from his 15-game suspension Monday at home versus
“Not having Melo has been tough for us, but we only have one more to go,”
Iverson said. “It was a great team effort.”
LeBron James registered his first triple-double of the season with 30 points,
10 rebounds and 10 assists, but Cleveland suffered its third consecutive
defeat, tying a season-high.
Denver led by as many as 25 in the third quarter. Iverson’s layup pushed the
score to 82-57 midway through the period, but the Cavs started to close the
gap and got within 88-70 going into the fourth.
Several lapses on defense allowed Cleveland to cut the deficit to single
digits late in the fourth. James’ driving layup made it 100-92, capping an
11-4 run, with just over four minutes left.
A three-pointer by Damon Jones got Cleveland within 103-98 with 3:15 left, but
Nene hit two free throws, then blocked Donyell Marshall’s shot and slammed at
the other end to extend the advantage to nine. Iverson’s two free throws made
it 109-98 with 2:11 left.
Marshall ended with 14 points and Larry Hughes 13 for Cleveland.
Two consecutive baskets by Camby, including a dunk, capped eight straight
points by the Nuggets for a 15-8 lead. Denver held a 29-22 advantage after 12
The Nuggets boosted that lead to as many as 21 in the second quarter, the last
time at 64-43 on an Eduardo Najera reverse layup in the final minute. Denver’s
lead stood at 64-45 at the half.
Cleveland has lost 13 of its last 17 at Denver…The Cavs are 2-4 on their
current seven-game road trip, which ends with a contest at Golden State
Saturday…James fell to the court with nearly five minutes remaining after
getting his right foot caught under the body of a falling Smith. James came
off under his own power and returned to the game…Anderson Varejao had 11
points and Zydrunas Ilgauskas 10 for Cleveland.