By Dennis Geortaos
DENVER (AP) — Wilson Chandler scored 19 points, including a 3-pointer and three free throws late in the game, and the Denver Nuggets held off the Minnesota Timberwolves 117-113 on Friday night for their third straight win.
Kenneth Faried added 16 points and 10 rebounds for Denver, and Ty Lawson had 14 points and 10 assists. Lawson then left with 32 seconds remaining when Corey Brewer inadvertently hit him in the eye with his hand as he was defending the guard on a drive into the lane.
Kevin Love led the Timberwolves with 28 points and Kevin Martin, who missed Wednesday's game against Cleveland because of an illness, added 27 points.
Trailing by four at the half, the Nuggets opened the third with an 11-2 run, fueled by Jordan Hamilton's 3-pointer. They carried an 86-81 lead into the fourth and stretched their advantage to 105-92 with 5:46 left when Andre Miller had a 3-pointer and Faried jammed home a dunk in successive possessions.
Minnesota scored seven straight points to pull to within six but Chandler, playing in his second game since returning from a strained left hamstring, drained a 3-pointer from the corner to make it 112-103 with 2:18 left to play.
Minnesota then rallied again, pulling to 115-113 on a 3-pointer by Love with 18.9 seconds remaining.
Ricky Rubio fouled Chandler with 15 seconds left and he made the first of two free throws but Miller grabbed the rebound for the Nuggets, was fouled and made one of two at the line to rebuild Denver's lead to four points. The Timberwolves' final shot in the last seconds was blocked by Faried.
The Timberwolves led 60-56 at halftime after trailing by as many as 14 points.
Nate Robinson's driving layup put Denver up 40-26 with 10½ minutes left in the second quarter but Minnesota got hot to close the gap, scoring 16 of the next 20 points to pull to 44-42 on a breakaway dunk by Pekovic with 5:53 remaining.
NOTES: Timberwolves C Ronny Turiaf has missed eight games since he hurt his right elbow. There's no timetable for his return. ... The Nuggets were playing the front end of a back to back. They play at Houston on Saturday. ... The Nuggets are 14-3 against the Timberwolves at the Pepsi Center since 2005-06 season.