Iverson, Camby too much as Nuggets top HawksJan 24, 2008 - 6:13 AM DENVER (Ticker) -- No Carmelo Anthony, no problem for the Denver Nuggets.
Allen Iverson scored 29 points and Marcus Camby pulled down 21 rebounds to go with 13 points as the Nuggets topped the Atlanta Hawks, 107-100, on Wednesday.
Linas Kleiza added 23 points and Kenyon Martin chipped in 20 and 10 rebounds for the Nuggets, who shot 34-of-40 from the free-throw line en route to their third win in the last four games.
"It was a big win especially with Melo being out," Kleiza said. "We didn't play good all game, but we got it done. It was an important win with the tough stretch we have coming up."
Denver was without the services of Anthony - the NBA's fourth leading scorer - due to a sprained ankle suffered in Tuesday's 116-99 loss to the Los Angles Lakers. Anthony went up for a jump shot and landed on Kobe Bryant's foot before being helped off the court.
But Iverson picked up the slack for his fallen partner, attacking the basket and converting on 15-of-18 free-throw attempts. The perennial All-Star guard scored 12 of his points in the opening quarter as the Nuggets closed the period on an 18-2 run to open up a 29-17 lead.
"(Iverson) had another gutty performance," Nuggets coach George Karl said. "But we probably didn't win this game without Kleiza. He is a real student of the game. He comes to work every day and plays hard."
Denver pushed the advantage to 45-28 on Kleiza's layup with 4:52 remaining in the second quarter. The Lithuanian swingman has gone over 20 points in three of the last four games after hitting the mark just three times in the first 37 games of the season.
Atlanta chipped away at the deficit and pulled to within 100-96 with 3:12 left in the fourth quarter when Joe Johnson, who finished with 14 points on 5-of-17 shooting, nailed a 3-pointer.
But the Hawks missed their next three shots, allowing the Nuggets to pull away.
"Iverson had it going tonight," Hawks coach Mike Woodson said. "It really makes it tough when he can get to the line all night and keep making free throws. It was a struggle."
Josh Smith registered his first career triple-double with 22 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists. Marvin Williams added 20 points for Atlanta, which shot just 39 percent (38-of-97) from the field en route to its fourth consecutive loss.
"We knew we had a chance to get back into this game, but it's tough when you are going against (Iverson) and Kleiza," Smith said. "Kleiza has had an outstanding past week for them."
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