Nuggets win 13th in a row at home
The Associated Press
DENVER (AP) – Ty Lawson matched his season high with 32 points, including 14 in the fourth quarter, and the Denver Nuggets beat the injury-depleted Minnesota Timberwolves 111-88 Saturday night to stretch their home winning streak to 13 games, their longest in 14 years.
Corey Brewer had 15 points, while Danilo Gallinari and Andre Iguodala added 11 apiece for the Nuggets, who have won eight in a row overall. Fueled by their longest home winning streak since a 19-game run from Jan. 28-April 20, 1989, the Nuggets ran their home record to 28-3, tying the Miami Heat for best in the league.
Mickael Gelabale scored 19 points for the Timberwolves, who were without Nikola Pekovic (abdominal strain), Kevin Love (broken hand), Andrei Kirilenko (strained left calf), Brandon Roy (knee surgery), Chase Budinger (knee) and Malcom Lee (knee).
J.J. Barea added 15 points for Minnesota, which lost for the seventh time in eight games.
Denver avenged a rare home loss the last time the teams met. The Timberwolves beat the Nuggets 101-97 on Jan. 3 despite losing Love to the hand injury for much of the second half, snapping Denver’s eight-game home winning streak at the time.
It was a different story in the rematch.
After a basket by Derrick Williams tied the score at 57-all, the Nuggets put together a 14-2 run that included 3-pointers by Gallinari and Lawson to go in front 71-59 with 5:02 remaining in the third quarter.
Ricky Rubio and Greg Stiemsma hit successive baskets to get the Timberwolves within nine but the Nuggets produced another surge to take an 83-70 lead into the fourth quarter. JaVale McGee had three dunks in the stretch for Denver, including a breakaway slam after stealing the ball from Rubio near midcourt.
Trailing 48-41, Minnesota scored eight straight points, starting with a jumper by Stiemsma, to go in front by a point. Lawson made a pair of free throws with 1.2 seconds remaining in the second quarter to give the Nuggets a 50-49 lead at halftime.
NOTES: Lawson has scored 20 or more points in 19 of his last 26 games. … Minnesota missed a chance to string together two wins for the first time since winning a season-high four straight from Dec. 7-15, including a 108-105 home win over the Nuggets. … The Timberwolves were one of only three teams to beat the Nuggets in Denver. Miami and Washington are the others.
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