NBA Game Summary - Denver at Utah
(Saturday, January 2nd)
Final Score: Denver 105, Utah 95
Salt Lake City, UT (Sports Network) - Ty Lawson tied a career-high with 23 points and set a new career-best with nine assists, leading the shorthanded Nuggets to a 105-95 win over division rival Utah at EnergySolutions Arena.
Lawson was a scintillating 9-of-14 from the floor for the Nuggets, who played without Carmelo Anthony (knee) and Chauncey Billups (hamstring). Denver had lost six straight on the road and five of six, overall.
Denver used turnovers and their fast-break offense to dominate Utah, forcing 26 Jazz mishaps and turning them into 33 points. In addition, the Nuggets had 24 fast-break points to Utah's 12.
Nene added 22 points in the win, while J.R. Smith had 18.
Carlos Boozer had 18 points and 10 boards to pace Utah, which has lost four of six. Mehmet Okur and Deron Williams each contributed 16 points, and Ronnie Brewer had 10 in the setback.
The Nuggets took a slim 28-25 lead after one quarter, and Denver stayed in front, 51-47, at halftime following a closely contested second quarter.
In the third, the Nuggets forced turnover after turnover to build up a sizeable advantage. Lawson began the quarter with a three for a seven-point lead, and Utah committed three turnovers in a four-possession stretch, leading to a Lawson free throw for a 62-54 lead with 7:41 left.
A steal by Nene three minutes later jumpstarted an 8-0 burst, as Smith drained a three for a 75-59 margin. The Jazz recovered a bit down the stretch and trailed, 78-68, heading to the fourth.
Denver only increased its lead in the final quarter, as Anthony Carter capped a 6-0 burst with a layup for a 92-77 advantage.
Utah didn't threaten down the stretch.
Utah committed nine turnovers in the third quarter...Denver had 14 turnovers in the entire game...Anthony missed a game for the first time this season...The Nuggets had lost four straight at Utah.
01/02 23:45:06 ET