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NBA FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL --- --- --- --- ----- DENVER 27 24 31 25 107 MINNESOTA 22 25 25 28 100 FINAL

HIGH SCORERS: DEN - NICK VAN EXEL 30, RAEF LAFRENTZ 25, VOSHON LENARD 19 MIN - KEVIN GARNETT 25, CHAUNCEY BILLUPS 21, LAPHONSO ELLIS 14

HIGH REBOUND: DEN - VOSHON LENARD 9, ANTONIO MCDYESS 9 MIN - KEVIN GARNETT 13, LAPHONSO ELLIS 9

HIGH ASSISTS: DEN - NICK VAN EXEL 7, ANTONIO MCDYESS 6 MIN - CHAUNCEY BILLUPS 9, TERRELL BRANDON 6

ATT: 15,227


Extended Box

DENVER (107) AT MINNESOTA (100)

DENVER REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

MCDYESS F 43 8-19 1-2 1 8 9 6 3 1 2 17 POSEY F 32 3-6 2-4 0 3 3 4 3 2 2 10 LAFRENTZ C 38 8-12 8-9 0 7 7 1 3 0 0 25 LENARD G 41 7-14 1-3 1 8 9 3 4 2 4 19 VAN EXEL G 41 11-20 3-4 0 1 1 7 2 1 2 30 CLARK 15 2-5 0-1 2 4 6 1 2 1 0 4 MCCLOUD 16 0-3 2-2 1 1 2 5 0 0 0 2 PACK 10 0-2 0-0 0 0 0 0 1 0 2 0 ABDUL-WAHAD 4 0-1 0-0 0 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 DAVIS DNP - COACH'S DECISION MURRAY DNP - COACH'S DECISION STRICKLAND DNP - COACH'S DECISION

TOTALS 240 39-82 17-25 5 32 37 27 19 7 13 107 (.476) (.680) TEAM REBS: 10 TOTAL TO: 13(11 PTS)

MINNESOTA REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT MQ PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

K GARNETT F 42 10-19 4-4 3 10 13 2 4 0 3 25 SZCZERBIAK F 37 5-9 2-2 1 5 6 3 1 0 0 12 NESTEROVIC C 14 3-5 0-0 1 1 2 0 4 0 0 6 BILLUPS G 36 6-15 6-6 0 4 4 9 2 2 3 21 BRANDON G 28 2-9 2-2 2 3 5 6 1 2 3 6 ELLIS 35 7-17 0-0 1 8 9 2 4 2 5 14 PEELER 19 1-5 4-4 0 2 2 2 0 0 0 6 MITCHELL 12 1-2 0-0 0 1 1 1 2 0 1 2 DAY 14 3-5 1-1 1 3 4 1 2 1 1 8 SLATER 3 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 AVERY DNP - COACH'S DECISION D GARRETT DNP - COACH'S DECISION

TOTALS 240 38-86 19-19 9 37 46 26 21 7 16 100 (.442) (1.000) TEAM REBS: 6 TOTAL TO: 16(16 PTS)

DENVER 27 24 31 25 - 107 MINNESOTA 22 25 25 28 - 100

BLOCKED SHOTS: DENVER - LAFRENTZ 2, MCDYESS. MINNESOTA - K GARNETT 3, ELLIS, PEELER. 3-PT. FIELD GOALS: DENVER 12-18 (.667), POSEY 2-2, LAFRENTZ 1-2, LENARD 4-6, VAN EXEL 5-8. MINNESOTA 5-14 (.357), K GARNETT 1-1, SZCZERBIAK 0-1, BILLUPS 3-8, BRANDON 0-1, PEELER 0-1, DAY 1-2. TECHNICALS: NONE. OFFICIALS: ED F RUSH, RON OLESIAK, MARC DAVIS. A - 15,227. T - 2:04.


Box Score

DENVER (107) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Mcdyess 43 8-19 1-2 1-9 6 3 17 Posey 32 3-6 2-4 0-3 4 3 10 Lafrentz 38 8-12 8-9 0-7 1 3 25 Lenard 41 7-14 1-3 1-9 3 4 19 Van Exel 41 11-20 3-4 0-1 7 2 30 Clark 15 2-5 0-1 2-6 1 2 4 Mccloud 16 0-3 2-2 1-2 5 0 2 Pack 10 0-2 0-0 0-0 0 1 0 Abdul-wahad 4 0-1 0-0 0-0 0 1 0 Davis DNP - coach's decision Murray DNP - coach's decision Strickland DNP - coach's decision _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 39-82 17-25 5-37 27 19 107 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.476, FT-.680. 3-Point Goals: 12-18, .667 (Posey 2-2, Lafrentz 1-2, Lenard 4-6, Van Exel 5-8). Team rebounds: 10. Blocked shots: 3 (Lafrentz 2, Mcdyess). Turnovers: 13 (Lenard 4, Mcdyess 2, Pack 2, Posey 2, Van Exel 2, Abdul-wahad). Steals: 7 (Lenard 2, Posey 2, Clark, Mcdyess, Van Exel).

MINNESOTA (100) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp K Garnett 42 10-19 4-4 3-13 2 4 25 Szczerbiak 37 5-9 2-2 1-6 3 1 12 Nesterovic 14 3-5 0-0 1-2 0 4 6 Billups 36 6-15 6-6 0-4 9 2 21 Brandon 28 2-9 2-2 2-5 6 1 6 Ellis 35 7-17 0-0 1-9 2 4 14 Peeler 19 1-5 4-4 0-2 2 0 6 Mitchell 12 1-2 0-0 0-1 1 2 2 Day 14 3-5 1-1 1-4 1 2 8 Slater 3 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 1 0 Avery DNP - coach's decision D Garrett DNP - coach's decision _______________________________________________ TOTALS j² j j j _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.442, FT-1.000. 3-Point Goals: 5-14, .357 (K Garnett 1-1, Szczerbiak 0-1, Billups 3-8, Brandon 0-1, Peeler 0-1, Day 1-2). Team rebounds: 6. Blocked shots: 5 (K Garnett 3, Ellis, Peeler). Turnovers: 16 (Ellis 5, Billups 3, Brandon 3, K Garnett 3, Day, Mitchell). Steals: 7 (Billups 2, Brandon 2, Ellis 2, Day). ____________________________________________ Denver 27 24 31 25 - 107 Minnesota 22 25 25 28 - 100 ____________________________________________ Technical fouls: None. Flagrant fouls: None. A: 15,227. T: 2:04. Officials: Ed F Rush, Ron Olesiak, Marc Davis.


Game Story

MINNEAPOLIS (Ticker) -- Nick Van Exel scored a team season-high 30 points and knocked down a clutch 3-pointer down the stretch as the Denver Nuggets used a 10-2 closing run to pull away for a 107-100 victory over Minnesota Timberwolves.

Van Exel hit 11-of-20 shots, including 5-of-8 3-pointers, and handed out seven assists for Denver, which had lost five of its first six road contests. Things did not look good tonight when the Nuggets squandered a 12-point fourth-quarter lead and fell behind 98-97 with 2:28 to play on a three-point play by Todd Day.

But Van Exel responded immediately, drilling a 25-footer before Raef LaFrentz knocked down four straight free throws, the last of which gave Denver a 104-98 lead with 1:15 remaining.

"Tonight was a night I made my shots and was able to do something good for the team," Van Exel said. "Believing in ourselves and fighting to the end was the key tonight. They made their run, but we held in there together and made some big shots and got some big stops defensively."

LaFrentz scored 25 points and Voshon Lenard added 19 for the Nuggets, who have won five of their last seven games.

"We haven't been playing very successfully on the road," Denver coach Dan Issel said. "That was just our second win. But we've played some tough teams as well. Minnesota is one of the teams we'd like to think we're as good as they are -- one of the teams we're going to be fighting for a playoff spot."

Kevin Garnett had 25 points and 13 rebounds for Minnesota, which has lost three of four since a season-high five-game winning streak.

Keon Clark's short jumper in the lane with eight-10ths of a second left in overtime gave Denver a 109-107 victory over the Timberwolves on November 8 at the Pepsi Center.

"This was very tough for us," Garnett said. "They beat us at the buzzer last time. We don't want to give them confidence that they can beat us all the time. We wanted to change that tonight. LaFrentz started them out and Nick finished them off."

The Nuggets did not appear as if they would need such dramatics to pull out tonight's contest as LaFrentz came out red-hot, knocking down a 15-footer and a 3-pointer before making a driving layup to give the Nuggets a 7-0 lead. LaFrentz scored 12 first-quarter points, leading Denver to a 27-22 lead after 12 minutes.

"It was a product of getting in the gym and working my shot," LaFrentz said of his hot start. "I guess when you do that, you really concentrate on the fundamentals of the shot. I got back to basics and tonight it went with me. It felt good."

Garnett's driving dunk and a nine-footer by Brandon gave Minnesota a 32-29 lead three minutes into the second quarter but LaFrentz brought the Nuggets right back. He made a nine-footer, a 15-footer, two free throws and a dunk to spark a 12-2 5 thrust Denver in front, 41-34, with 4:22 remaining in the first half. His 10-footer beat the halftime buzzer and gave the Nuggets a 51-47 lead at the break.

Minnesota again battled back as Garnett's follow shot gave the Wolves a 62-61 lead with 7:36 left in the third quarter. But Van Exel answered with a 15-footer and a 3-pointer, sparking a 17-4 run that he and highlighted with three shots from beyond the arc before Lenard's 3-pointer made it 78-66 with 3:03 left in the period.

Van Exel's next 3-pointer, a 25-footer, gave the Nuggets a seemingly safe 86-74 cushion with 9:55 to play before the Wolves came roaring back.

"(Van Exel) came out on fire. He really got his team involved and got us in the tempo of the game," Denver forward Antonio McDyess said. "We just followed his lead and kept getting him the ball -- and he kept knocking down the shots."

Day and Chauncey Billups hit back-to-back 3-pointers and Day added seven more points during a 24-11 spurt that ended with Day's three-point play.

Undaunted by the comeback and the renewed life in the crowd of 15,227 at the Target Center, Van Exel calmly knocked down his fifth 3-pointer, giving Denver the lead for good.

McDyess scored 17 points and James Posey added 10 for the Nuggets, who had all five starters score in double figures. Denver shot 48 percent (39-of-82) and forced 16 turnovers.

Billups scored 21 points, LaPhonso Ellis 14 and Wally Szczerbiak 12 for the Wolves, who shot 44 percent (38-of-86) and held a 46-37 rebounding advantage.

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