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Anthony, Nuggets win first home game this season

Nov 19, 2006 - 4:47 AM DENVER (Ticker) -- Carmelo Anthony and the Denver Nuggets finally can go home happy.

Anthony scored 34 points and had eight rebounds and six assists as the Nuggets posted a 117-109 victory over the Toronto Raptors.

J.R. Smith had 16 points and Reggie Evans had 10 and 12 rebounds for the Nuggets, who shot 45 percent (41-of-91) from the field.

After an 0-2 start, the Nuggets earned their first home win of the season and hope the victory is a harbinger of good times, as they play seven of their next nine games at the Pepsi Center.

"It always feels good to win at home," Anthony said. "You know, this is a game we are supposed to win."

"In general, it was a good win," Nuggets coach George Karl said. "It's one of the first times the bench has given us a big lift. Joe Smith and Reggie were both big. Eddie Najera was great, Melo was Melo. We all know that we can play better defense than what we've been playing. At least we are still winning games."

The NBA's second-leading scorer entering the contest, Anthony shot 10-of-18 from the field and now has scored 30-plus points in six straight games, tying the franchise record held by former Nugget Alex English.

"If I got it (tying franchise record with English), I got it," Anthony said. "If not, so be it. As long as we win, that's all I care about. I'm just playing, I'm feeling good about my game right now."

Anthony was one of seven players who scored in double digits for Denver, which tallied a season-high in points while crushing Toronto on the boards 58-37.

"They just beat us on the glass," Raptors coach Sam Mitchell said. "Najera, Joe Smith, Reggie Evans, and that's what we talked about. TJ, Chris Bosh, Garbajosa, you can't ask for more out of them. We had a lot of good things.

"We got some guys starting to play well, we just got to build on it. This is a tough place to come on a back to back. We played hard, we were gassed, but that's part of the NBA."

Chris Bosh had a season-best 31 points and nine rebounds and T.J. Ford added 26 and a season-high 18 assists for Toronto, which fell to 0-5 on the road.

"It's tough, we've been working hard," Ford said. "Once again, when it's time for us to make a big play, we come up short. We need a big shot, and we get a good look, it's just coming up short. We gave a better effort tonight, we're showing signs of what kind of team we can be."

The Raptors shot 46 percent (42-of-91) but made just 6-of-24 3-pointers. They have lost five straight to the Nuggets.

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