Denver Nuggets Grind Out Gutsy Win in Toronto, 106-105


The Denver Nuggets snapped their 8-game losing streak on Thursday as they overcame a late charge by the Toronto Raptors to secure a huge victory on the road by a score of 106-105.

Will Barton‘s two free throws with 2 seconds left sealed a huge victory for the Denver Nuggets at Toronto. The Raptors, who the night before overcame a 17-point deficit at Atlanta to win by 10 outscored the Nuggets 34-25 in the fourth quarter to make the game interesting, but ultimately fell short. Barton led the Denver Nuggets in scoring against Toronto with 22 points coming off the bench. Barton has played well off the bench the last two games, and seems as if he is settling into a 6th man role for Head Coach Mike Malone.

-= Related: Denver Nuggets: Time to Tank for Lottery Pick? =-

The Denver Nuggets wasted a 10 point lead in the fourth quarter to allow Toronto back into the game. Danilo Gallinari led the Denver Nuggets starters in scoring on Thursday with 21 points on 7-13 shooting, and added 5 rebounds and 3 dimes. Darrell Arthur also had a good night for Denver, scoring 19 points while recording 6 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 blocks and 2 steals. 

More from Mile High Maniac

Joffrey Lauvergne got the start at center for the Denver Nuggets on Thursday after his good play Wednesday at Chicago. Lauvergne recorded a double-double, scoring 14 points on 6-9 shooting while adding 10 rebounds. The Nuggets out-rebounded the Raptors 42-39 on Thursday, which made a difference.

The Denver Nuggets have weathered a huge game from Raptors swingman DeMar DeRozan, who scored 34 points on the night while adding 5 rebounds and 5 assists. DeRozan was difficult to defend the entire game. Kyle Lowry added a very inefficient 16 points on only 4-16 shooting, while reserve guard Cory Joseph score 15 points coming off the bench.

Thursday’s game in the hostile environment of the Air Canada Centre proved that even despite 8 consecutive losses, this Denver Nuggets team is capable of winning on the road and pulling out a gutsy victory over a very good Eastern Conference team in the Toronto Raptors. Though the start of the season is disappointing, Mike Malone’s team does have the firepower to give a lot of teams problems.

The most concerning observation stemming from Thursday’s game is the poor play of Emmanuel Mudiay, who scored only 5 points on only 2-9 shooting. The rookie did dish out 9 assists on the night, which shows that even on a night when he shot poorly, he is capable of running the offense and facilitating it.

Next: Denver Nuggets Hope to Snap 8-Game Skid in Toronto

It was nerve-wracking at the end, but it’s great that the Denver Nuggets can shake off a long losing streak and boost their team morale. The Nuggets road trip continues on Saturday as they face the NBA worst Philadelphia 76ers with a great chance to win two games in a row.