Brooklyn (4-8) at Denver (6-6)

By ALAN FERGUSON, STATS Writer Saturday, Nov 20, 2010 Tipoff: 9:00 pm EST Sat Nov 20, 2010

After hearing pleas for him to stay in Denver from some of his younger fans, Nuggets forward Carmelo Anthony(notes) will face one of the two teams that are reportedly trying to pry him away.

The Nuggets will attempt to move back above .500 on Saturday night when they host the slumping New Jersey Nets.

Anthony has yet to accept the three-year, $65 million extension Denver offered him in June, leading to speculation that the team could trade him before he becomes a free agent at season’s end.

The two teams rumored to have the inside track on acquiring the All-Star forward are the New York Knicks and the Nets, who each reportedly couldn’t pull off trades to get him before the start of this season.

Anthony made an appearance Friday at a public school with wife La La Vazquez to promote the “Get Schooled National Challenge and Tour,” a program attempting to improve high school graduation rates and college readiness.

When he appeared on stage, students yelled out pleas for him to consider staying in Denver.

“It’s touching, especially when kids are saying it,” Anthony said. “They know what’s going on. They’re aware of the good things that I do here in Denver. Not just on the court, but doing stuff like this. It really means a lot.

“Right now, my options are open. That’s where I am right now with it.”

First, Anthony will try to help his team bounce back from yet another loss during an uneven start to the season. The Nuggets (6-6) have alternated losses with wins over their last five games, and haven’t won or lost more than two in a row in 2010-11.

Anthony shot 5 of 15 from the floor and finished with 18 points in Thursday night’s 86-83 loss at Portland, during which Denver shot 38.5 percent as a team.

The Nuggets have better recently against New Jersey, winning six of the last seven meetings including three straight. They’re averaging 114.7 points in the three most recent victories.

Meanwhile, the Nets (4-8) are struggling to score. They have averaged 89.5 points since winning their first two games.

New Jersey mustered 35 points in the second half of Friday night’s 86-81 loss to Sacramento, which had previously lost six in a row. The team’s top two scorers, Devin Harris(notes) and Brook Lopez(notes), combined for 17 points while shooting 6 of 21.

“It was a tough loss,” said forward Kris Humphries(notes), who had a season-high 18 points and 10 rebounds. “We’ve been able to hold teams below their shooting percentage, but we haven’t been able to put points on the board. We are really taking a long time to get into our offense.”

Harris has averaged 21 points in his last three games against Denver, but Lopez has scored 10.3 per game in four career matchups - nearly six below his career average.

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