Faried Leads Nuggets Over Magic 120-112
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Kenneth Faried scored 26 points and Wilson Chandler added 21 points and 10 rebounds to rally the Denver Nuggets to a 120-112 win over the Orlando Magic on Wednesday night.
JJ Hickson had 20 points and nine rebounds, and Ty Lawson added 17 points and 12 assists for the Nuggets, who ended a two-game losing streak.
Arron Afflalo led Orlando with 24 points. Nikola Vucevic added 20, but had only four points in the second half. Jameer Nelson scored 19 points and had nine assists in Orlando’s fifth loss in six games.
After trailing by as many as 13 points in the first half, Denver took an 85-74 lead into the fourth quarter. A fast-break layup by JJ Hickson gave the Nuggets a 105-92 lead with 4:49 to play.
The Magic trimmed the deficit to five on two occasions, but couldn’t get any closer. Afflalo’s two free throws made it 115-110 with 1:26 to play, but the late rally died when Kyle O’Quinn couldn’t run down a pass on a fast-break and turned the ball over.
Aaron Brooks converted a layup on the ensuing possession to give Denver a 117-110 lead with 1:03 to play and the Nuggets coasted home with the win.
Denver, which played in spurts during the first half, came out with energy to start the second half and took command of the game.
Faried and Chandler had nine points each during an 18-6 run that gave Denver an 80-70 lead. The burst included a four-point play by Chandler, who was knocked out of bounds as he drilled a 3-pointer from the corner.
It helped that the Nuggets assigned Faried to cover Vucevic in the second half. Vucevic had 16 points in the first half, but missed his only shot in the third quarter and had just four points in the final period.
The first half was back and forth with Orlando slipping away and Denver reeling them back in and eventually taking a 52-50 halftime lead.
Vucevic had 12 points and seven rebounds in the first eight minutes to help the Magic build a 23-15 lead, but Denver cut it back to 27-23 by the end of the period.
Orlando took advantage of four straight Nuggets turnovers at the start of the second quarter to go up 40-27. Oladipo and Harris both had breakaway dunks during the 13-4 run, but it ended when Oladipo lost the ball on another breakaway.
The Nuggets, once again, slowly gained on the Magic, tying the game at 48 on Chandler’s 3-pointer with 1:05 left in the half.
Lawson made a 3-point play to give Denver its first lead of the game at 51-50 with 4 seconds left, then stole the inbounds pass and fed Faried, who was fouled on a dunk attempt. He made one free throw to give Denver a slim halftime advantage.
NOTES: Denver outrebounded Orlando 52-38. The Magic are 0-31 when being outrebounded this season. . Denver had a .388 winning percentage against Orlando (19-30), the second-worst winning percentage against any franchise in the NBA. . Lawson is averaging 22.9 points and 11.1 assists his last six games. . Magic reserve G Doron Lamb made only his second basket in his last five games. He is 2 for 17 (11.8 percent) in that stretch.
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