Kemba Walker had 21 points, eight assists and six rebounds, fellow point guard Tony Parker added 19 points off the bench and the Charlotte Hornets snapped the Denver Nuggets’ seven-game win streak with a 113-107 victory on Friday.
Marvin Williams chipped in with 14 points and 10 rebounds for the Hornets, who ended a three-game losing streak.
Denver came in the with the best record in the Western Conference, but shot 39 percent from the field and 23 percent from 3-point range. The Hornets put the clamps on Nikola Jokic for most of the game, holding the 7-foot, 250-pound center to 16 points and 11 rebounds.
Jamal Murray led the Nuggets with 20 points.
Parker, now in his 18th NBA season, made big plays throughout.
The Hornets built a 64-53 halftime lead behind Parker, who had 13 points, three assists and a steal before the break.
When the Nuggets rallied from 11 down with three minutes remaining and cut the lead to three with 1:13 left on a 3-pointer from Malik Morris, Parker drove the left side of the lane and hit a big step-back 17-foot jumper.
The Nuggets looked to cut it back to a one-possession game, but Michael Kidd-Gilchrist had huge block against the glass on Juancho Hernangomez with 24 seconds left.
Walker hit three free throws in the final 14 seconds to put the game away. Walker finished the game 11 of 12 from the free throw line, offsetting a tough 4-of-11 shooting night.
Nuggets: Will Barton, Gary Harris, Michael Porter Jr. and Isaiah Thomas did not play due to injuries. … Torrey Craig had a rough night in his return to the Carolinas as the former South Carolina Upstate star was held scoreless and fouled out.
Hornets: Carolina Panthers defensive end Julius Peppers took in the game from courtside seats. A certain future NFL Hall of Famer, Peppers once played basketball for the North Carolina Tar Heels and remains a big basketball fan.
Nuggets: At Hawks on Saturday night.
Hornets: At Knicks on Sunday night.
Source: The Associated Press