Batum scores 33 points to help Blazers top Nuggets

Published February 05, 2012

| Associated Press

Nicolas Batum set a Trail Blazers record with nine 3-pointers and scored a career-high 33 points, LaMarcus Aldridge added 29 points and the Portland Trail Blazers beat the Denver Nuggets 117-97 Saturday night.

Gerald Wallace had 17 points and Marcus Camby had 20 rebounds for Portland. Batum made a career-high nine 3-pointers, the most in an NBA game this season and a franchise record for the Blazers.

Danilo Gallinari had 20 points and Ty Lawson and Kosta Koufos each added 16 to lead the Nuggets, who have lost four of their last five, including 93-89 Friday night to the Los Angeles Lakers.

Portland was coming off a deflating 95-92 loss at Sacramento on Thursday. The Blazers have been a completely different team on the road this season, where they are 3-9. At the Rose Garden, Portland is 11-1, the second-best home record in the Western Conference to San Antonio, which is 13-1.

The Nuggets (15-9) were playing their third time in as many days and arrived in Portland after 4 a.m. after their flight out of Denver was delayed because of snow. The Blazers were playing on one day's rest.

Batum returned after missing two games with a bruised knee. The 6-foot-9 small forward provided a spark for the Blazers after entering the game late in the first quarter, hitting 5 of 6 3-pointers and scoring 17 points in a span of less than seven minutes, lifting Portland to a 52-37 lead in the second quarter.

Denver cut the lead to 59-53 by putting together a 15-4 run going into halftime as Lawson scored eight points. The game got as close as 64-61 in the third on a dunk from Koufos, but the Blazers went on a 14-2 run as the Nuggets hit the wall. Denver was never a threat the remainder of the game and the Blazers led by as many as 25.

NOTES: The Nuggets play their next three games at home, against Houston, Dallas and Golden State. ... Blazers PG Raymond Felton left the game in the third quarter with sprained foot. X-rays were negative. ... Denver G Rudy Fernandez was booed each time he touched the ball. He played for Portland from 2008-11, but fell out of favor with fans when he asked to be released from his contract before last season. Many fans also booed a video image of Greg Oden, the former No. 1 overall draft pick who has not played since December 2009 because of knee injuries. Oden had arthroscopic surgery on Friday in Denver.

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