Shorthanded Nuggets edge Jazz in overtimeOct 16, 2008 - 4:33 AM DENVER (Ticker) -- Even without their leading scorer, the Denver Nuggets remained unbeaten this preseason as they edged the Utah Jazz, 120-119, in overtime on Wednesday night.
All-Star guard Allen Iverson was out for the second straight game with a bruised left knee, but his teammates picked up the scoring slack. Linas Kleiza and J.R. Smith scored 19 points apiece - leading six Nuggets in double-figures - and each hit a pair of free throws in the final 20 seconds of overtime as Denver improved to 3-0 this preseason.
With the Jazz down by two with less than 10 seconds to play, Nuggets guard Dahntay Jones swiped an errant pass from C.J. Miles and fed the ball to Kleiza. The fourth-year swingman drew a foul and drained both foul shots to make it 120-116, all but sealing the victory. Utah rookie center Kosta Koufos drained a 30-foot 3-pointer with 1.3 seconds remaining to cut the deficit to one, but it was too little, too late.
While Iverson was sidelined, fellow All-Star Carmelo Anthony made his first appearance of the preseason. The 6-8 forward had missed the Nuggets' first two games with a bruised finger, but returned on Wednesday and collected 16 points, five boards and three steals.
But Anthony took a seat on the bench for good late in the third quarter, leaving the Nuggets' fate in the hands of Smith, Kleiza and a slew of new acquisitions and reserves. Smith seemed to be involved in everything down the stretch - both the good and the bad. With 14 seconds left in regulation, Smith snapped a 107-107 tie with a pair of free throws.
Seconds later, Smith fouled the Jazz swingman Miles, who hit both foul shots to tie the game back up and send it into overtime.
Smith missed all four of his shot attempts in the extra period - and two free throws - before hitting a pair of late foul shots to help the Nuggets seal it. He was 5-of-15 from the floor on the night, including 1-for-7 from 3-point range.
Jazz All-Star point guard Deron Williams led all scorers with 22 points and added eight assists and five steals in 25 minutes. Miles and Kyle Korver chipped in with 13 each.
The high-scoring affair was nothing new for the Nuggets and Jazz, two of the league's five highest-scoring teams in the league last year. In four head-to-head meetings last season, the two combined for 230 points per contest.
DENVER 120 FINAL IN 1ST OT
Oct 16 12:03 AM
DENVER 109 END OF 4TH QTR GOING INTO OVERTIME
Oct 15 11:42 PM
DENVER 83 END, 3RD QTR
Oct 15 10:58 PM
DENVER 51 HALFTIME
Oct 15 10:11 PM
DENVER 27 END, 1ST QTR
Oct 15 9:40 PM
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