Anthony has huge night, Thunder fall to Nuggets
DENVER (AP) — Emmanuel Mudiay scored 10 of his 21 points in the fourth quarter, including the go-ahead 3-pointer midway through the period, and the Denver Nuggets beat the Oklahoma City Thunder 102-94 on Thursday night.
Paul Milsap added 17 points and Nikola Jokic had 15 points to go with 11 rebounds for Denver. The Nuggets snapped a five-game losing streak at home to the Thunder, including a 106-105 setback April 9 on a last-second 3-pointer by Russell Westbrook that eliminated Denver from playoff contention.
Carmelo Anthony, who spent his first 7 1-2 years in the league in Denver before being traded to the New York Knicks in 2011, had 28 points to lead the Thunder, who acquired Anthony in a pre-season trade. Paul George and Westbrook each added 13 points for the Thunder, who lost their fourth in a row.
Neither the Thunder nor the Nuggets were able to gain separation on the other in a tightly contested third quarter and the teams went into the final period tied at 75.
The game was tied at 82 when Mudiay connected on a 3-pointer with 7:35 remaining, triggering a 7-0 burst by Denver.
Oklahoma City fought back to within 93-90 but Milsap answered by converting a three-point play with 2:09 left to rebuild Denver’s lead to six.
The Thunder got no closer than four points the rest of the way.
Trailing by as many as 11 points earlier, the Nuggets closed to within 53-51 at the half on a driving layup by Milsap in the final seconds of the second quarter.
Anthony had 15 of his points in the first half to help the Thunder maintain their early edge.
Thunder: Westbrook was treated for a facial cut early in the game after taking an elbow to the face while guarding Nikola Jokic. The injury did not prevent him from continuing to play. … Beyond his impact on the floor, Anthony has proven to be a steadying influence in the locker room. “He’s got a world of experience and a world of wisdom to share with our guys,” coach Billy Donovan said prior to the game.
Nuggets: F Juancho Hernangomez remains sidelined indefinitely because of a bout of mononucleosis. He has missed the last 10 games.
Thunder: Head home to complete a back-to-back Friday night against the Los Angeles Clippers.
Nuggets: Wrap up a season-long six-game homestand on Saturday night when they host Orlando.
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