Where: Pepsi Center, Denver, Colorado
Officials: #49 Tom Washington, #59 Gary Zielinski, #12 Violet Palmer
Nuggets 93, Magic 90: Ty Lawson made 9-of-14 from the field en route to a game-high 23 points and added five assists as Denver held off visiting Orlando for its third straight victory.
Former Magic guard Arron Afflalo contributed 17 points while J.J. Hickson chipped in 11 points and 10 rebounds off the bench for the Nuggets. Nate Robinson had 13 points, Wilson Chandler added 12 and Kenneth Faried grabbed 12 rebounds for Denver, which made all 14 of its free throws in the fourth quarter.
Nikola Vucevic led the way with 20 points and 11 rebounds while Victor Oladipo recorded 17 points and six assists for the Magic, who lost their fourth straight contest. Evan Fournier scored 14, Tobias Harris had 12 and Andrew Nicholson added a season-high 11 for Orlando, which forced 21 turnovers.
Lawson scored 12 as the Nuggets led by as much as 11 in the first half before the Magic recorded 14 of the final 19 points – six by Oladipo – to close within 40-39 at intermission. Elfrid Payton’s basket put Orlando ahead 53-52 with 5:24 left in the third before Afflalo scored four as Denver ran off the next 11 points.
The Magic pulled within 63-61 after Fournier’s 3-pointer opened the fourth quarter, but Robinson scored nine as the Nuggets built the lead back to 78-68 with 5:48 to go. Nicholson’s 3-pointer cut the deficit to 93-90 with 56.4 seconds left and Orlando got the ball back with a chance to tie, but Fournier’s shot from behind the arc missed at the buzzer.
GAME NOTEBOOK: The Nuggets traded C Timofey Mozgov and a 2015 second-round pick to Cleveland for a pair of protected 2015 first-round picks on Wednesday. Mozgov was averaging 8.5 points and 7.8 rebounds. … Harris has scored in double figures in all 36 games he has played this season. … Denver C Jusuf Nurkic had eight points, four rebounds, three assists and two blocks in his first career start.