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Bobcats 101, Nuggets 98

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DENVER -- Center Al Jefferson had 35 points and 11 rebounds, guards Gerald Henderson and Ramon Sessions scored 16 apiece, and the Charlotte Bobcats beat the short-handed Denver Nuggets 101-98 Wednesday night.

Denver guard Randy Foye scored a season-high 33 points, and guard Evan Fournier tied his career high with 19 points for the Nuggets, who played with a thinned backcourt.

Center Timofey Mozgov had 15 points and 14 rebounds for Denver (22-22).

The Nuggets were already down point guard Ty Lawson, who suffered a left rotator cuff strain Sunday against the Sacramento Kings, when guard Nate Robinson suffered a sprained left knee early in Wednesday's game. That left Denver without a true point guard after it started the season with three.

Robinson will undergo an MRI exam Thursday.

Foye and Fournier became the primary ball-handlers, and they responded with their best games of the season, but it wasn't enough.

The Nuggets' offense suffered, and Denver was held below 100 points for the first time in 14 games.

Still, the Nuggets led by five in the fourth before the Bobcats rallied.

The game was tied at 95 when Charlotte forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist hit one free throw. Denver forward Wilson Chandler missed a layup, and Jefferson's fall-away jumper with 23 seconds left gave the Bobcats (20-27) a 98-95 lead.

Foye stepped out of bounds on a 3-point attempt, and after Kidd-Gilchrist made one of two free throws, Denver forward Darrell Arthur hit a corner 3-pointer to make it 99-98.

Henderson hit one free throw, giving the Nuggets a chance to tie, but Fournier missed a layup and Kidd-Gilchrist blocked Mozgov's dunk attempt.

Early on, it looked as if the Bobcats were going to run away from Denver. Charlotte hit eight of its first 11 shots and built a 14-point lead in the first on the strength of Jefferson's 10 points.

Foye scored 15 of his 20 first-half points in the second quarter, and Mozgov asserted himself inside as the Nuggets got their deficit down to single digits. Arthur's foul-line jumper cut Charlotte's lead to 53-52 at halftime.

Foye already had a season-high 26 at the end of the third quarter, helping the Nuggets tie it at 75-75 heading into the fourth.

NOTES: Nuggets PG Ty Lawson (left rotator cuff strain) is considered day-to-day. Coach Brian Shaw said Lawson, who was injured in Sunday's win, was improving but not enough to play Wednesday. ... Charlotte G Kemba Walker (left ankle sprain) missed his fifth consecutive game, but he could be back for Friday's game against the Lakers. "He'll practice in L.A.," coach Steve Clifford said. "If he can get through practice, he could play Friday or Saturday." ... Denver F Darrell Arthur returned after missing seven games with a left hip strain. He scored seven points in 17 minutes. ... Bobcats C Al Jefferson scored 20 or more points for the 10th consecutive game. It is the second-longest streak in franchise history.
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