Final / OT

Regular Season Series (Game 2 of 4)

Series starts 1/21

Game 1: Friday, January 21st
Game 2: Friday, February 25th
Game 3: Tuesday, April 5th
Game 4: Friday, April 15th

Nuggets 97

(26-29, 10-20 away)

Grizzlies 94

(30-25, 18-10 home)

    Coverage: FSS

    7:00 PM ET, February 25, 2005

    FedExForum, Memphis, TN

    1 2 3 4 OT T
    DEN 20 30 12 29 697
    MEM 19 21 31 20 394

    Top Performers

    Den: M. Camby 17 Pts, 15 Reb, 1 Ast, 1 Stl, 4 Blk

    Mem: B. Cardinal 28 Pts, 7 Reb, 3 Ast, 3 Stl

    Memphis drops fourth in a row

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) -- It took an extra five minutes for the Denver Nuggets to escape with a win over the Memphis Grizzlies.

    Earl Boykins scored 19 points, including a pair of free throws with 10.1 seconds left, as Denver earned a 97-94 overtime victory over the Grizzlies on Friday night.

    "I think we just stepped up to any challenge anybody threw at us by just the little things we did," Denver swingman Bryon Russell said. "We fought to take it into overtime, and we won."

    James Posey's 3-point shot from the right corner in the final seconds was way off the mark, and several tips were unsuccessful as the Grizzlies dropped their fourth straight.

    Marcus Camby, who had 17 points and 15 rebounds, hit a pair of free throws to give Denver a 95-93 lead with 1:08 left in overtime. The Nuggets shot 34 percent but went to the free throw line 52 times, hitting 44. Boykins was 15-of-16 from the line, career-highs for the guard in both categories.

    Jason Williams' 20-footer at the end of regulation bounced off the rim, sending the game into overtime -- the first time this season Memphis has gone to an extra period.

    Denver had tied the score with 13.1 seconds left on Andre Miller's three-point play when Memphis's Brian Cardinal fouled him on a layup. Cardinal acknowledged it was an instinctive, but not smart, play.

    "I'm not necessarily a shot blocker, so I don't know what I was doing," said Cardinal, who led the Grizzlies with a season-high 28 points. "I jump about a foot and try to block his shot. It was a brain cramp, I guess."

    Miller finished with 15 for Denver, while Carmelo Anthony and Kenyon Martin had 12 each.

    Cardinal's night included 24 points in the second half and a career-high five 3-pointers.

    "Offensively, I felt good after I made a couple of plays," Cardinal said. "It was a good game, but it would have been much better if I hadn't fouled at the end (of regulation)."

    Shane Battier finished with 17 points, while Williams scored 13 and added seven assists.

    In a game that had plenty of ugly traits from a load of turnovers to an abundance of fouls, Denver was able to get the ball inside enough to build a lead.

    But a third-quarter spark, fueled first by Battier, closed with back-to-back 3-pointers by Cardinal, capping a 31-12 period for Memphis and giving the Grizzlies a 71-62 lead entering the fourth.

    "We had to do something," Martin said of the Grizzlies' third-quarter rally. "Make more shot, get more loose balls. Whatever we had to do."

    Memphis, already short-handed from injuries to frontline players Pau Gasol and Stromile Swift, dealt with more personnel problems after Bonzi Wells was ejected early in the second quarter.

    Pesky defense by Denver and Memphis defenders' inability to rotate to the basket, helped Denver to a 12-point lead midway through the second period en route to a 50-40 lead at the break. Despite shooting 37 percent from the field, Denver benefited from going to the line 28 times, hitting 24. Boykins led the way with 12 points in the half.

    But after leading by as many as 11 in the second half, the Grizzlies let the game slip away with mistakes down the stretch.

    "We did everything but win the game," said Memphis center Lorenzen Wright, who had a season-high 18 rebounds, including nine on the offensive glass. "We were right there, and it's amazing they were still able to get that win.

    "This is a game we let slip away."

    Game notes

    The game was a sellout, Memphis' 11th this season, setting a new standard. The Grizzlies had 10 in 1995-96, their inaugural season in Vancouver. ...Wells was ejected with 11:39 left in the second quarter after earning two quick technicals for arguing that he was fouled on a block by Francisco Elson. ... Denver's 12 third-quarter points matched its lowest for a period this season. ... Memphis owner Michael Heisley was so incensed with the first-half officiating that at halftime he lobbied game coordinators to make sure they replayed all questionable foul calls.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 97 94
    FGM-FGA 25-73 (.342) 33-83 (.398)
    3PM-3PA 3-14 (.214) 9-26 (.346)
    FTM-FTA 44-52 (.846) 19-26 (.731)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 16-50 14-42
    Assists 16 20
    Turnovers 21 20
    Steals 9 13
    Blocks 8 3
    Fast Break Points 15 12
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 31 (1/0) 37 (4/0)
    Largest Lead 12 11

    Top Performers

    Marcus Camby Camby
    Points: 17
    Reb: 15
    Ast: 1
    Stl: 1
    Blk: 4
    Brian Cardinal Cardinal
    Points: 28
    Reb: 7
    Ast: 3
    Stl: 3
    Blk: 0