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NBA: Banged-up Nuggets out-hustle Wizards late, hang on for the win 

March 24, 2014 8:43am

DENVER - Forward Kenneth Faried had 20 points and eight rebounds as the short-handed Denver Nuggets overcame a 14-point deficit in the first quarter to defeat the Washington Wizards 105-102 on Sunday (Monday, PHL time).

Denver, which won its fifth straight home game, had to hold off a late Wizards rally. Washington pulled to two with 10 seconds to go after trailing by eight with a minute left. But Denver guard Aaron Brooks and forward Darrell Arthur hit two throws each in the final 9.7 seconds.

Arthur also grabbed a loose ball that Washington forward Trevor Ariza had dropped with about six seconds to play.

Guard Randy Foye had 17 points and forward Darrell Arthur added 15 off the Nuggets bench, which outscored Washington's reserves 52-28.

Denver hit 7-of-8 free throws in the final minute.

Guard Bradley Beal led Washington with 21 points. Ariza added 18, but only three of those came after the first quarter.

The sloppy Wizards finished with 24 turnovers, including 15 in the second half. Denver converted the turnovers into 30 points.

Washington (36-34) entered Sunday (Monday, PHL time) a game behind Brooklyn for the fifth spot in the Eastern Conference playoff race. Brooklyn is currently playing at Dallas.

The Nuggets took a 91-84 lead midway through the fourth quarter behind two driving baskets by guard Evan Fournier and Arthur's three-pointer during a 7-0 run.

Denver's injury situation got worse in the third quarter when forward Jan Vesely, acquired in a trade with Washington on February 20 (Feb. 21, PHL time), left with a rib cage contusion. He did not return.

Sunday (Monday, PHL time) was Denver's first game since forward J.J. Hickson tore his right ACL and was lost for the season on Friday (Saturday, PHL time) in Dallas.

Denver has been without forward Danilo Gallinari (torn left ACL) all season and guard Nate Robinson (sprained left ACL) since Jan. 29. Center JaVale McGee (left tibia stress fracture) has been out since November. And starting forward Wilson Chandler missed Sunday's game with a left hip strain.

Hickson appeared in 69 games, including 52 starts, and averaged 11.8 points and a team-best 9.2 rebounds. He had 26 double-doubles. A date for surgery date has not been set. Vesely is expected to play more in Hickson's absence. - Reuters

The scores:

NUGGETS 105 - Faried 20, Foye 17, Arhurt 15, Brooks 13, Vesely 10, Lawson 9, Fournier 9, Mozgov 5, Miller 5, Randolph 2

WIZARDS 102 - Beal 21, Ariza 18, Gortat 16, Wall 15, Gooden 15, Harrington 6, Webster 5, Booker 4, Miller 2, Temple 0

Denver           21-26-30-28
Washington    29-20-24-29
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