Pelicans beat Nuggets for first victory of season
NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Jahlil Okafor scored 26 points, Brandon Ingram added 25 and the New Orleans Pelicans beat the Denver Nuggets 122-107 on Thursday night for their first victory in five games this season.
Ingram has scored at least 22 points in each of his first five games for New Orleans after coming over from the Los Angeles Lakers.
Jrue Holiday added 19 points and seven assists after missing the previous two games because of a sprained left knee. Frank Jackson had 21 points on 8-of-10 shooting.
Michael Porter Jr. led the Nuggets with 15 points in his NBA debut. Jamal Murray and Jerami Grant each had 14 points, and Nikola Jokic added 13 points, six rebounds and six assists. Denver has lost two straight after opening 3-0.
The Pelicans led the final three quarters
New Orleans benefited from improved shot selection. The Pelicans attempted at least 41 three-pointers in each of their first four games, but they reduced that to 33 on Thursday and made a season-high 46 percent. New Orleans shot 53 percent overall from the field.
The Nuggets made just 7 of 26 3-pointers.
Pelicans: Jackson scored 13 consecutive points during the first half. ... Lonzo Ball scored nine points and had eight assists. ... Nicolo Melli, a 28-year-old Italian rookie, made his first career start, replacing guard J.J. Redick. Melli had seven points and four rebounds.
Nuggets: Porter, the 14th overall pick in 2018, missed last season after undergoing back surgery and did not appear in the first four games this season. ... Will Barton (left toe soreness) did not play. Torrey Craig started in his place.
Pelicans: At Oklahoma City on Saturday
Nuggets: At Orlando on Saturday night.