EditorsNote: Fixes stats, play by play throughout
Jamal Murray’s short jumper with 6 seconds remaining gave the Denver Nuggets a 114-112 victory over the host Charlotte Hornets on Thursday night in a dizzying finish.
Murray finished with a team-high 18 points as seven Denver players scored in double figures.
Charlotte’s Terry Rozier missed a 3-point attempt at the buzzer.
From the four-minute mark to the two-minute mark, there were seven lead changes and a tie.
Then Denver went ahead again on Nikola Jokic’s basket. An offensive goaltending call on the Hornets halted the trend of changing leads.
Jerami Grant scored on a move in the lane for the Nuggets, but didn’t convert a three-point play. The Hornets were ahead again on two Devonte’ Graham free throws with 57.4 seconds left. Denver was on top with two Will Barton free throws on the next possession.
Then it was Charlotte’s Cody Zeller’s turn at the foul line, making 1 of 2 with 31.6 seconds to play to set up the final sequence.
Barton finished with 16 points, Monte Morris posted 15, Jokic and Gary Harris each had 14 points and Paul Millsap and Grant scored 11 points apiece.
Graham scored 24 points and PJ Washington had 20 for the Hornets. Rozier (19 points), Willy Hernangomez (14 points) and Zeller (10 points) helped give Charlotte a chance.
Graham sparked a second-half surge with nine points in the opening five minutes of the third quarter for the Hornets, who lost for the third straight game in a homestand with one game remaining.
This was another agonizing result, like Tuesday night’s one-point setback to the San Antonio Spurs, when Charlotte failed to score on its last possession.
The Nuggets took off in the second quarter, building a 60-51 lead by halftime. Denver shot 55.6 percent in the first half.
Denver committed 12 turnovers, an improvement after averaging 17 turnovers a game since the All-Star break.
Graham returned to action after a one-game absence because of an ankle injury. He made his 200th 3-point basket of the season in the first half.
—Field Level Media