SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Aaron Afflalo shook off a sore ankle to score 19 points, including a 3-pointer with 11.4 seconds to play, and the Denver Nuggets held off the Utah Jazz 103-101 Thursday night.
Ty Lawson scored 22 points, and Nene and Chris Andersen each added 13 to give the Nuggets their fifth win in six games the deal that sent Carmelo Anthony and Chauncey Billups to New York.
The Jazz had an unlikely chance to send the game into overtime, but Andrei Kirilenko fumbled the ball away as the buzzer sounded.
Devin Harris, who had 21 points and nine assists, hit a 3-pointer with 1.4 seconds to play. Kirilenko stole the inbound pass under the basket but lost control as he went up for the potential game-tying layup.
C.J. Miles had 22 points for Utah, which lost its seventh straight at home - the team's worst home skid since 1982. The Jazz fell to 1-6 under new coach Ty Corbin.
Against the most foul-prone team in the league, the Nuggets repeatedly took the ball to the basket down the stretch. Denver made 15 of 25 free throws in the fourth quarter alone. The Jazz attempted 12 free throws the entire game.
The Nuggets are the top-scoring team in the league at 107.5 points per game and have not dropped off offensively since the trade. But the new-look Nuggets have also clamped down on the defensive end.
Though the Jazz shot 52 percent, the Nuggets guarded best when the game was on the line.
After Harris made a 3-pointer for Utah last lead at 96-94, the Nuggets forced three straight turnovers and took control of the game.
The Jazz are in the midst of a 5-17 stretch and have lost four of five since they traded star point guard Deron Williams to New Jersey. Utah drops two games behind Memphis for the eighth and final slot in the Western Conference.
The Jazz led 90-85 on Jefferson's spinning layup, but the Nuggets scored nine straight points to make 94-90 with 3:45 remaining in the game.
Kenyon Martin hit back-to-jumpers to put Denver up 74-66 with 3:09 left in the third quarter. But the Jazz, sparked by the fast-breaking Harris, scored 10 straight points and took the first lead of the game, 76-74, heading into the final period.
The crowd gave the team an extended standing ovation at many points in the fourth quarter but stood in disbelief and collectively groaned as Kirilenko's final shot went awry.
Hitting seven of their first eight shots, the Nuggets burst out to an early advantage and did not relinquish the lead until late in the third quarter.
NOTES: Newly-acquired Derrick Favors (cold) and reserve guard Ronnie Price (sprained toe) did not dress for Utah. Corbin, who assumed head coach duties without a contract since Feb. 10 when Jerry Sloan abruptly resigned, finally signed a multi-year deal with Jazz on Tuesday. Jazz G Earl Watson had to leave the game with 6:30 remaining to close a cut to his face. Neither team led by more than nine points.
The Associated Press News Service
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