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NBA Game Summary - Atlanta at Denver

(Tuesday, March 1st)

Final Score: Denver 97, Atlanta 74

Denver, CO (Sports Network) - Carmelo Anthony scored a game-high 23 points and added seven rebounds to lead the Denver Nuggets to a 97-74 win over the Atlanta Hawks at the Pepsi Center.

Andre Miller added 14 points and 10 assists for the Nuggets, who have won four in a row. Earl Boykins also had 14 points and Eduardo Najera had 11 points and five boards for Denver, which has won six of eight overall.

Najera played 25 minutes in his home debut for the Nuggets, playing mostly for the injured Kenyon Martin, who left the game after one quarter due to left knee tendinitis. Najera, who was acquired from the Dallas Mavericks three games ago, shot 4-of-8 from the field.

Al Harrington had 18 points and six rebounds to lead the Hawks, who have lost nine straight. Obinna Ekezie added 12 points for Atlanta, which fell to 0-6 on a seven-game road trip and lost for the 20th straight time as the guest.

Prior to the game, Atlanta released point guard Gary Payton, who had yet to play for the team since being acquired from Boston in a February 24 trade that sent Antoine Walker packing to Beantown. Payton has said he wants to end his career with a playoff caliber team. Atlanta fell to an NBA worst 10-46 after this setback.

The Nuggets began to pull away in the third quarter, outscoring the Hawks 32-16 in the stanza on their way to taking a 65-50 advantage into the fourth.

In the third, an 11-0 run by Denver turned a 42-41 deficit into a 52-42 cushion. Anthony had seven points during the burst, starting it with a jumper at the 8:45 mark and capping it with a dunk 2 1/2 minutes later.

Later, an 11-4 spurt by the Nuggets gave the club a 65-49 lead. Boykins started the run with a three-pointer and ended it with a pair of free throws.

Atlanta, which led 34-33 heading into the third, went the final 8:56 of the quarter with just one bucket from the field and only eight points total.

The Hawks drew within 69-58 during the early stages of the fourth quarter when Josh Childress hit a bucket with 2:23 elapsed, but that would be as close as Atlanta would get.

The advantage later ballooned to 92-68 when Bryon Russell three-pointer ended a 13-2 run with 2:27 remaining.

During the run, Atlanta's Tyronn Lue was ejected for committing a flagrant two foul on Najera.

Childress ended with eight points, six rebounds and three blocks for the Hawks, who lead 18-12 after one quarter.

The two teams combined to turn the ball over 46 times, with Atlanta committing 24. The first quarter saw a combined 21 turnovers.

Game Notes

Atlanta shot 1-of-6 from three, shooting 40 percent from the field for the game...Denver shot 50 percent from the field, including 3-of-9 from three...Marcus Camby had 11 points, 13 boards and three blocks for the Nuggets...DerMarr Johnson had 10 points for Denver...The Nuggets swept the two-game season series from Atlanta.

03/01 23:59:10 ET

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