Nuggets
Pelicans
107 - 105 Final
  for this game

Anthony, Nuggets deal blow to Hornets' playoff chances

Apr 14, 2007 - 6:08 AM OKLAHOMA CITY (Ticker) -- It was no day at the beach for Carmelo Anthony. But the Denver Nuggets put the New Orleans Hornets' playoff hopes on life support.

Completing an odd sequence, Anthony netted an important free throw and Marcus Camby protected the rim on the final possession as the Denver Nuggets escaped with a dramatic 107-105 victory over the Hornets.

Camby collected 15 points, 10 rebounds and nine blocks for the Nuggets (43-36), who have won eight straight games and clinched the sixth seed in the Western Conference.

Anthony credited his team for spirited play in a tough environment.

"This is always a tough place to play," Denver coach George Karl said. "The crowd had their energy up, so their team got up on us early, and we fought back. We tried to get guys involved, (Steve) Blake had a big night and his defensive pressure caused them to change things up."

The Hornets (37-42) are two games behind Golden State (39-40) and the Los Angeles Clippers (39-40) for the eighth and final playoff spot with three contests left.

"We are just another game out now," Hornets star guard Chris Paul said. "We need some help from other teams, but we need to help ourselves in the close games. These last three games are not going to be easy, but we are going to play until they tell us we cannot play anymore."

Trailing, 98-85, with 7:02 left, Denver went on a decisive 22-7 run, capped by Anthony's free throw with 17 seconds left to make it 107-105.

"We got to a point where during a timeout, I told our guys, 'Give me one more push, and it's got to be on defense,'" Nuggets coach George Karl said. "We capitalized on their aggressiveness and used it against them because Marcus was cleaning up back there."

But the superstar forward's first free throw sparked a controversy.

A fan threw a beach ball on the court, but it was ruled to have been tossed after Anthony had released his misfired shot - allowing the Hornets a chance to tie or take the lead on the game's final possession.

But Camby made his presence felt on the defensive end, altering game-tying attempts by Chris Paul, Devin Brown and David West. Bobby Jackson fired an airball from the arc as time expired.

"We know we can score with the best of them," Camby said. "We need our defense to step up and make plays and tonight we were aggressive and made plays."

Blake, who collected 10 points, 10 assists and five rebounds, made one of the biggest shots of the game. After taking a lead pass from Anthony, Blake drove into Hornets forward Rasual Butler and dropped in a one-handed circus shot to make it 106-103 with 32 seconds left.

"I was in the right place at the right time, got the ball and drove my shoulder into the defender trying to get to the line, but I got the shot off and it went in," Blake said.

West had 31 points and 13 rebounds for Hornets, who played what could be their final home game in Oklahoma City on Friday. They are expected to return to New Orleans on a full-time basis next season.

"We did a great job of scoring all night, but down the stretch we just couldn't get the play (we needed)," West said. "We couldn't find that one play that we could continue to use and be successful with. Being up 12 at home and losing hurts.

"This one really, really hurts. It hurts our playoff chances, it hurts our pride, it hurts that the last time we play in Oklahoma City we couldn't send them out on a win, it just hurts."








  • AT OKLAHOMA CITY OK
    NBA DENVER 107
    NEW ORLEANS 105 FINAL

    Apr 13 10:25 PM
  • 28
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 28 roots

    Nuggets vs. PelicansApr 13 10:11 PM


  • AT OKLAHOMA CITY OK
    NBA DENVER 77
    NEW ORLEANS 85 END, 3RD QTR

    Apr 13 9:49 PM


  • AT OKLAHOMA CITY OK
    NBA DENVER 53
    NEW ORLEANS 56 HALFTIME

    Apr 13 9:12 PM


  • AT OKLAHOMA CITY OK
    NBA DENVER 22
    NEW ORLEANS 35 END, 1ST QTR

    Apr 13 8:43 PM