Final / OT

Regular Season Series (Game 3 of 4)

Series starts 11/13

Game 1: Sunday, November 13th
Game 2: Friday, January 13th
Game 3: Friday, February 24th
Game 4: Friday, March 31st

Nuggets 102

(30-26, 12-15 away)

Timberwolves 101

(23-31, 15-13 home)

Coverage: ALT

7:00 PM ET, February 24, 2006

Target Center, Minneapolis, MN

1 2 3 4 OT T
DEN 28 21 26 13 14102
MIN 22 28 17 21 13101

Top Performers

Den: C. Anthony 30 Pts, 8 Reb, 3 Ast

Min: K. Garnett 23 Pts, 15 Reb, 3 Ast, 1 Stl, 3 Blk

'Melo's three lifts Nuggets over reeling Wolves in OT

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- Denver got the ball to Carmelo Anthony just in time.

Anthony scored 30 points, including the game-winning 3-pointer in overtime following two straight Denver turnovers, to give the Nuggets a 102-101 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Friday night.

"Yeah, I think that was the best of any big shot I've hit, most likely," Anthony said. "I didn't have nothing to do, but to shoot."

"That game was just fun to play in," he added. "An adrenaline rush."

After Minnesota took the lead with the help of two straight steals, Anthony launched the game-winning 3-pointer with 3.4 seconds left and Trenton Hassell right on him. As the ball went through the net, Wolves coach Dwane Casey slammed the scorer's table in frustration.

"I don't know how much closer Trenton Hassell could have been to Carmelo," Casey said.

The Timberwolves had a foul to give on the play, but Hassell was pump faked and didn't want to put Anthony on the line for three shots.

"I was wrong," Hassell said. "Maybe I should've grabbed him and took my chances putting him on the line. I'll do it next time."

Andre Miller had 19 points and 13 assists for Denver, which has won four of five. Kenyon Martin, who sat out Denver's last game with an injured left knee, scored 18 off the bench and DerMarr Johnson tied a season-high with 17.

Kevin Garnett had 23 points and 15 rebounds for the Timberwolves, who have lost 13 of their last 17. Ricky Davis and Marcus Banks each added 19, but Minnesota fell to 0-4 in overtime games. Garnett shot just 8-for-21 from the field and missed tough shots at the end of regulation and overtime.

"We've been snakebitten a lot this year," Garnett said.

"He hit a tough, tough powerball shot. Like those people who worked for the meat factory that hit the lotto."

Denver was leading 99-95 in overtime when Mark Blount hit a jumper for Minnesota. Hassell then stole the inbounds pass and fed Garnett for a one-handed alley-oop to tie it. After a Denver timeout, Davis picked off Martin's inbounds pass, raced down court and hit a pull-up jumper to give the Wolves a 101-99 lead.

"I tried to put that out of my mind as much as possible, but I couldn't," Martin said of his mistake. "Melo bailed me out and I said thanks after the game."

Denver got the ball into Anthony's hands on its next possession, and he hit the game-winner.

Trailing 75-67, the Wolves rallied to tie it with a 14-6 run to start the fourth, capped by Davis' four-point play. Banks' two free throws at the 4:50 mark gave Minnesota its first lead, 83-81, since the second quarter.

The Wolves held on to the lead until Miller made one of two foul shots with 45.2 seconds left to tie it at 88. Minnesota had a chance to win it in regulation, but Garnett badly missed a 20-footer at the buzzer.

Ruben Patterson, Reggie Evans and Charles Smith, acquired by the Nuggets as part of a four-team, nine-player deal, were all with Denver but unavailable pending the finalization of the trade.

The Nuggets had only nine players dressed for the game, including Julius Hodge, who didn't arrive at Target Center until the second quarter after being activated from Austin of the NBDL.

Denver started the third quarter with a 9-2 run to take a 58-52 lead at the 8:35 mark. Johnson had four points during the stretch, and scored four more in the quarter, as the Nuggets took an 75-67 lead into the fourth.

Denver shot 11-for-18 in the first quarter to take a 28-22 lead.

Game notes

Minnesota is 4-10 since the seven-player trade with Boston. ... Minnesota had only had four field goals in the third quarter, as many as both Johnson and Anthony. ... Greg Buckner hyperextended his right knee during the fourth quarter of Denver's last game, and was inactive on Friday. ... Martin said he wasn't even supposed to play, but had to with only seven players available at the start of the game.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


Team Stat Comparison

Points 102 101
FGM-FGA 42-91 (.462) 38-87 (.437)
3PM-3PA 9-22 (.409) 4-10 (.400)
FTM-FTA 9-14 (.643) 21-28 (.750)
Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 8-41 9-46
Assists 29 28
Turnovers 13 16
Steals 9 10
Blocks 4 6
Fast Break Points 14 13
Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 23 (0/0) 18 (0/0)
Largest Lead 9 5

Top Performers

Carmelo Anthony Anthony
Points: 30
Reb: 8
Ast: 3
Stl: 0
Blk: 0
Kevin Garnett Garnett
Points: 23
Reb: 15
Ast: 3
Stl: 1
Blk: 3