DENVER — Carmelo Anthony scored a career-high 50 points, and the Denver Nuggets beat the New York Knicks 128-125 Friday night for their 17th straight regular-season home win.
Al Harrington had 41 points — one shy of his career high — for the Knicks, who lost their fourth straight. David Lee added 23 points and 11 rebounds.
Anthony scored 13 points in the third quarter, helping the Nuggets take a 92-87 lead into the final period. The Knicks remained within striking distance, tying it at 100 with 7:56 left when Chris Andersen was called for goaltending on Nate Robinson's short jump hook.
Neither team was able to seize a decisive edge, though.
J.R. Smith and Wilson Chandler traded 3-pointers in one sequence that left the Nuggets up 110-107. The Knicks scored the next four points, moving in front 111-110 on Lee's dunk off a feed from Larry Hughes with 3:35 remaining.
That would be the Knicks' final lead.
Anthony hit a pair of free throws and Smith made his third 3-pointer of the period to give the Nuggets a 115-111 lead.
A three-point play by Harrington brought the Knicks within 123-120 with 38 seconds left, but Chauncey Billups, who had 32 points, answered with a reverse layup.
Chandler hit a 3-pointer before Anthony converted a pair of free throws to help the Nuggets withstand the Knicks charge. Harrington added a basket late but Smith made one of two free throws and the Knicks couldn't get a shot off in the final seconds.
Loosening up the Nuggets' defense with their early outside shooting, the Knicks began penetrating to convert from in close. During a 10-2 second-quarter spree that put the Knicks up 52-44, Harrington had a pair of dunks, Danilo Gallinari added another and Lee had a layup along with a pair of free throws after being fouled inside.
But the Nuggets pulled into a tie at 59-all on a dunk by Anthony and took a 61-60 halftime lead when Billups drove in for a layup with a 2.9 seconds left.
The Knicks came out shooting well from long range, converting five 3-pointers in the first quarter, when they took a 30-26 lead. Harrington's nine points in the quarter all came on 3-pointers.
The Nuggets' last regular-season loss at the Pepsi Center was to Houston, 97-95 on March 9. … Knicks guard Chris Duhon limped off the court at halftime after turning his ankle taking a last-second shot, but he returned to play in the second half. … Anthony's previous scoring high was 49 points.