Denver, CO – Andre Iguodala scored a team-high 17 points and pulled down 10 rebounds as the Denver Nuggets earned their first win of the season with a 109-97 triumph over the Detroit Pistons on Tuesday at Pepsi Center.
JaVale McGee scored 16 points off the bench, Ty Lawson added 15 points and nine assists and Kenneth Faried netted 15 points to go with eight rebounds for the Nuggets, who avoided starting 0-4 for the first time since the lockout- shortened 1999 season.
Kosta Koufos and Corey Brewer contributed 14 and 11 points, respectively in the victory.
Greg Monroe dropped in a game-high 27 points and grabbed 10 boards, while Rodney Stuckey added 17 points in the setback for the Pistons, who are 0-4 for the second time in the last three seasons.
Denver came out of the gates on fire, hitting six of its first nine shots from the floor while building a 17-7 advantage with 4:50 left in the opening quarter.
The Pistons answered with an 11-2 run, capped by a Kyle Singler layup with 2:24 to go. A pair of free throws by Stuckey tied things at 21, but Brewer closed the stanza with a 3-pointer to give the Nuggets a 24-21 lead after one.
The game remained close throughout the second quarter, which featured six lead changes and four ties. A deep jumper by Danilo Gallinari ignited the Nuggets on a 17-10 push to end the half with a 58-51 lead.
A driving layup by Lawson less than three minutes into the third quarter gave Denver a 65-56 lead, but the Pistons responded with an 11-2 spurt, capped by a Jason Maxiell jumper, to tie the game at 67 with 5:07 left in the stanza.
The Nuggets though, outscored Detroit 18-9 over the final five-plus minutes to take a nine-point cushion into the final 12 minutes of play.
Detroit made it interesting late in the fourth quarter when Jonas Jerebko stepped in front of an Iguodala pass and finished the run out with a reverse slam, cutting the deficit to 99-92 with 3:33 to play.
The Pistons would get no closer though, as the Nuggets closed out the game by outscoring Detroit by a 10-5 margin.
The Nuggets have won the last five meetings between the teams ... Denver shot 44.6 percent from the floor and 10-of-30 from 3-point range ... The game featured six lead changes and seven ties ... The Nuggets put home 14 fastbreak points and 26 second-chance points.