Nuggets 123, Nets 115
The Denver Nuggets were in a giving mood against the New Jersey Nets.
Danilo Gallinari scored 22 points, Arron Afflalo and Corey Brewer each had 19 points and the Denver Nuggets beat the New Jersey Nets 123-115 on Wednesday night.
Andre Miller had 12 points and 12 assists and Rudy Fernandez scored 15 and added eight assists for the Nuggets. Denver finished with a season-high 37 assists.
''The guys passed the ball really well and made some nice basketball plays,'' Nuggets coach George Karl said. ''Kind of a fast, crazy basketball game.''
Jordan Farmar had a game-high 26 points, Anthony Morrow scored 23 and Deron Williams had 16 points and 13 assists for New Jersey. The Nets set a season high for 3-pointers with 20. Farmar was 6 for 8 from behind the arc and Morrow hit 5 of 9.
''Knocked my first couple down and kept getting open looks,'' Farmar said.
New Jersey tied a season high with 35 3-point attempts.
The Nuggets scored the first five points of the second half to lead by 21 but New Jersey rallied to cut the deficit. Mehmet Okur scored eight points in a 13-3 run by the Nets that made it 76-65 with 7:33 left in the third quarter.
Denver responded by scoring 24 points before the end of the period. Gallinari capped the offensive surge with a 3 to give the Nuggets a 100-80 lead heading into the fourth.
The Nuggets had 21 assists in the second and third quarters combined.
''You'd rather see your team be unselfish to a fault, to a problem, than the other way,'' Karl said. ''Most NBA teams have the problem the other way.''
New Jersey scored the first 12 points of the last period to put a scare into the Nuggets. Blocked shots by Brewer and Chris Andersen keyed a 12-2 run by Denver that sealed the win.
''Pretty good offense for our team. Any time we score 115 points, you would think it was going to be a win,'' Nets coach Avery Johnson said. ''We just couldn't get any stops defensively.''
Williams picked up two quick technicals and was ejected with 3:02 left and the Nets trailing by 13.
''It was between me and the ref,'' he said. ''I sprained my ankle so I was a little mad and I took it out on him.''
Brewer took over in the second quarter as the Nuggets grabbed control. He came into the game with Denver leading by six early in the second quarter and he heated up in a hurry. He scored nine points to help increase the lead to 54-40 midway through the period. After the Nets cut it to 11, Brewer hit consecutive 3-pointers to stake Denver to a 68-52 lead at halftime.
Brewer and Gallinari finished with 17 points each at the break
''I thought Corey Brewer did a great job of getting us those easy baskets,'' Karl said. ''He's probably our best runner, probably our best cutter. If he keeps playing like he played tonight he might have to (play) on a more consistent basis.''
The Nuggets played without point guard Ty Lawson because of a strained right foot. Lawson was injured late in the first half of Denver's loss to New Orleans on Monday night. He played the second half but sat out practice Tuesday.
Lawson's absence gave rookie Julyan Stone an opportunity to make his NBA debut. Stone came off the bench to spell veteran Andre Miller and had three assists in six solid minutes.
He also had one foul when he tried to draw a charge on Farmar.
''I thought I got the charge but I'm not going to get that call,'' he said.
NOTES: Gallinari sprained his ankle early in the fourth quarter and didn't return. The Nuggets said he is probable for Friday's game against Miami. ... New Jersey's Damion James (sore right foot) and guard DeShawn Stevenson (right knee). Jones has missed the last three games and Stevenson one.