Nene Hilario scored 10 points and grabbed six rebounds in the first half, leading the Denver Nuggets to a 53-48 halftime lead over the Los Angeles Clippers Sunday night at Pepsi Center. The Clippers have lost nine consecutive games in Denver.
The Clippers led 23-18 with 1:49 remaining in the first quarter, but a 13-1 Nuggets run, carrying over into the second quarter, pushed Denver into the lead. The Nuggets led by as many as nine points, but the Clippers used a 12-2 run to briefly take the lead, before Denver regained the lead at the end of the half.
Blake Griffin had 12 points and seven rebounds for the Clippers in the first half. Chris Paul had three assists, but was limited to two points on just 1-of-7 shooting. Paul had a three-pointer disallowed late in the second quarter after review.
Denver native Chauncey Billups scored 12 of his 15 points in the first quarter, and the offense was a welcome sight for Billups, who made just six of 27 shots (22.2%) in his last three games and came into Sunday night shooting just 33.7% from the field on the season.
Former Clipper Andre Miller, starting at point guard Sunday night for the injured Ty Lawson, had 12 points and four assists in the first half for Denver, who shot 51.1% (23 for 45) in the opening 24 minutes. The Denver bench outscored the Clippers reserves 19-10, led by six points each from Al Harrington and Julyan Stone. Mo Williams scored seven points off the bench for the Clippers, who shot 39.5% (17 for 43) in the opening half.
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