(Boulder-CO) The Denver Nuggets were victorious tonight over the Indiana Pacers, 102-95, in what was a wild night in Canseco Field House. Denver played nine deep and had all of their starters reach double figures in points, but didn’t have anyone record a double-double. This victory was much needed and halts a three-game losing streak. Bright spots were Nene, Najera, Kleiza, and but of course, Carmelo Anthony. The All-Star.
It got pretty wild in the second half with Indiana’s Coach Rick Carlisle erupting in the ear of referee Joey Crawford on his way to a quick double technical and consequential ejection for what I thought wasn’t that big of a deal. Nene got fouled on a touch call down low and Carlisle flat out lost his cool. The call wasn’t going to end up deciding anything, so I am not so sure what the big deal was. Same story with Darrell Armstrong, the leagues third oldest player at 38, who decided to flat out lose his head in disagreement with official Eli Roe. All the fuss wasn’t even over a call on him and Armstrong had to be restrained by teammates during the TV timeout and allegedly kicked a chair before doing his best Dennis Rodman tribute (that’s stripping off your jersey to the late few who don’t know) while walking back to the locker room. Jeff Foster also got T’d up for arguing calls. So all in all, the Pacers did a swell job putting the Nuggets on the free-throw line with not only their fouls, but also their mouths.
And give all the credit in the world to the Nuggets. In the second half they went 24-31 from the charity stripe including 4-5 thanks to technical freebies. Overall they finished 32-43 from the free-throw line and it proved to be the difference down the stretch.
Carmelo finished tonight’s game with 34 points, six rebounds, and five assists in a game-high 45 minutes of action. He was aided in majority by Eduardo Najera’s 18 points, nine rebounds, two steals, assist, and block and Linas Kleiza’s 15 points and five rebounds on 3-6 from downtown. Nene also continues his tear as of late and chipped in 14 points and seven boards.
Tomorrow night marks the reunion of Earl Boykins and the Denver Nuggets as they will be meeting up with the Milwaukee Bucks for the first time since swapping the little man for Steve Blake. The Nuggets are now back to .500 with a record of 24-24, thank God. Go Nuggets!