The Denver Nuggets (16-17) were riding a modest two-game winning streak that included a 137-115 win over the Los Angeles Lakers. The Boston Celtics (13-21) were in the midst of a four-game losing streak allowing 105.8 points per game. Nothing necessarily had to give – and it didn’t.
The Nuggets scored 31 points in the first quarter, building an 8-point lead while the Celtics shot just 9-27 from the field. Unfortunately for the Celtics, this game didn’t feature any lead changes.
Wilson Chandler let Denver out of the gates with nine points in the quarter and Ty Lawson added six points and six assists.
In the second quarter, the Nuggets increased their lead to 23 points with hot shooting from the 3-point line by Randy Foye who continued to break out of his early season shooting slump. Denver continued to push the pace throughout the quarter, scoring a season-high 68 points by halftime. The Celtic’s shooting woes continued as they finished the half just 17-49 from the field.
The Celtics came out playing physical, if not frustrated, basketball in the second half as things got a bit rough in the trenches. After a technical foul by the Nuggets’ J.J. Hickson on J.D. Salinger, Salinger came back with two straight flagrant fouls on Hickson and Kenneth Faried before he was ejected from the game. When the game continued, Denver had built a 31-point advantage five minutes into the quarter.
The game seemed to settle down for the rest of the quarter as Boston matched Denver basket-for-basket before Nuggets coach Brian Shaw was ejected with 2:40 left in the third after complaining about an offensive foul called on reserve guard Even Fournier. Denver finished the quarter up 103-78.
The fourth quarter came and went in this game as most do in the NBA during garbage time with either too much or too little passing by both teams. By the time the final whistle blew, the Nuggets beat the Celtics 129-98. The 31-point win was the largest margin of victory for the Nuggets this season.
Jeff Green led the Celtics with 17 points, while Randy Foye paced the Nuggets with a game and season-high 23 points.