DENVER (AP) — Carmelo Anthony missed a contested, 14-foot jumper at the buzzer, and the Denver Nuggets hung on for a 97-95 victory over the New York Knicks and their former star player on Friday night.
Ty Lawson scored 22 points for the Nuggets, who sent the Knicks to an eighth consecutive loss.
Randy Foye added 17 points and provided the defense on Anthony’s last shot.
Anthony, who finished with 27 points, starred for the Nuggets for 7 1/2 seasons. He was back in Denver for the second time since he asked for and received a trade to New York in February 2011.
Just as he was in his initial return to Denver last March, when a knee injury knocked him out of the game early, the former fan favorite was booed practically every time he touched the ball.
The last few minutes were especially rough on Anthony, who also missed a jumper that could have tied it with under 4 minutes left and turned the ball over on a travel call with just under 3minutes to go.
Andrea Bargnani added 22 points for New York, while J.R. Smith and Iman Shumpert had 11 apiece.
Denver lost power forward Kenneth Faried midway through the third quarter, when he left the game to have a bruised right quad treated.
Anthony converted a three-point play that pulled the Knicks within 75-67 heading into the fourth quarter.
Tim Hardaway Jr. later hit his second 3-pointer in the fourth, igniting a 6-0 burst that got the Knicks within 81-78 with 7:32 left.
New York fought back to 85-83 on a pair of free throws, but Wilson Chandler, who came to Denver from New York as part of the Anthony trade, drained a 3-pointer to give the Nuggets a five-point lead.
The Knicks cut it to 96-93 when Raymond Felton hit a 3-pointer with 31 seconds left. A turnover by Chandler led to a driving layup by Shumpert to get the Knicks within a point.
After Lawson made one of two free throws with 19 seconds left, the Knicks got the ball to Anthony, who backed in against Foye and pulled up for a turnaround jumper that was short.
Lawson had 14 points in the first half, helping the Nuggets take a 51-45 lead.
The Nuggets led by as many as 13 points earlier, going in front 42-29 on a driving dunk by J.J. Hickson with 5:37 left in the second. New York closed the gap by putting together an 8-0 run, pulling within five points on Felton’s floater in the lane with 3:01 to play in the period.
NOTES: Lawson has scored 10 or more points in all 15 of his games. … Anthony is the only player in the NBA who has led his team in scoring in every game this season. … The Knicks’ skid is their longest since also losing eight in a row in February 2010.
By: Dennis Georgatos, AP Sports Writer
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