Suns lose Nash, down likewise shorthanded Nuggets
Denver, CO (Sports Network) – Amare Stoudemire scored 36 points and pulled
down 13 rebounds, as the Phoenix Suns overcame the early exit of Steve Nash to
hold off the shorthanded Nuggets, 113-108, at the Pepsi Center.
Nash didn’t play the second half due to right shoulder inflammation, as he
ended with nine points and seven assists. He’s also expected to miss Tuesday’s
road game against Portland.
Despite Nash’s injury, the Suns still won for the 19th time in their last 21
games by rebounding from a loss against Utah Saturday night.
Denver played without stars Allen Iverson and Marcus Camby, and lost despite
Carmelo Anthony’s first-career triple-double. Iverson missed his fourth
consecutive game with a sprained right ankle, while Camby was out with a
strained left groin sustained in a loss at Sacramento Saturday night.
Anthony had 31 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists, but the Nuggets suffered
their second straight loss and sixth defeat in seven contests. Nene tallied a
career-high 27 points and J.R. Smith 18 in defeat.
Leandro Barbosa had 20 points and Shawn Marion contributed 19 points and nine
rebounds for the Suns, who beat the Nuggets for the eighth time in the last
nine meetings. Raja Bell ended with 18 points for the Suns.
Anthony’s three-point play had the Nuggets within 109-106 with 13.4 seconds
left, but Marion hit two free throws.
Anthony’s driving layup had the Nuggets back within three with 7.9 seconds
left, but Bell sealed the victory with a pair of foul shots.
The Suns led 28-27 after one quarter, but Denver surged ahead into the second.
Anthony’s jumper capped an 11-2 run, as the Nuggets extended their lead to
55-47. It was 60-51 at the half.
Phoenix rallied in the third with a 15-2 push to move ahead 72-69.
Stoudemire’s three-point play ended the blitz midway through the quarter and
the Suns were on top, 81-79, going into the fourth.
Stoudemire’s three-point play extended the Suns to a 103-95 lead with 2:42
This was actually a make-up game from December 20, when snow postponed the
season’s first meeting…Marion sustained a cut above his right eye in the
second half and had stitches, but returned.