MILWAUKEE -- Ty Lawson scored 26 points, including the game-winning jumper with nine seconds left, leading the Denver Nuggets to a 112-111 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks on Monday night at the BMO Harris Bradley Center.
Lawson was one of six Nuggets to score in double figures. Wilson Chandler had 21 points, and Andre Iguodala finished with 13. Andre Miller, despite shooting just 2-of-12, finished with 12 points, the same total as Evan Fournier. JaVale McGee had 10 with 17 rebounds.
The victory keeps Denver (56-25) a game ahead of the Memphis Grizzlies and 1 1/2 games ahead of the Los Angeles Clippers for the No. 3 spot in the West and wraps up the road portion of the Nuggets' 2012-13 schedule with a 19-22 record.
Milwaukee, locked into the eighth seed and a first-round matchup against the defending champion Miami Heat, challenged but couldn't close the gap against Denver, especially inside. The Bucks (37-44) were forced to play a third straight game without center Larry Sanders, who has been hindered by a back injury.
Monta Ellis led Milwaukee with 38 points. He gave the Bucks a 111-110 lead with 14.2 seconds to play after connecting from long distance and making the ensuing free throw.
After Lawson's late shot, J.J. Reddick had a chance to win it for Milwaukee, but he missed a 3-point attempt as time expired. Redick was forced to sit out much of the second and third quarters after being hit in his left eye, but he returned to the game late in the third and finished with 20 points.
John Henson added 14 points and 15 rebounds for the Bucks, and Ersan Ilyasova had 14 points and 10 boards.
NOTES: Kenneth Faried will miss the Nuggets' last two regular-season games due to a sprained left foot and ankle, but he will be listed as day-to-day for the playoffs. Faried was injured in the first quarter of Denver's 118-109 victory Sunday over the Portland Trail Blazers. He underwent an MRI exam Monday, confirming the sprain. ... The Bucks got Brandon Jennings back in the lineup after the point guard missed the previous two games with a sore Achilles tendon. Jennings finished with four points and four assists in 29 minutes. ... Monday was the final home game of the season for the Bucks, who wrap up the regular season Wednesday in Oklahoma City ... The Nuggets are looking to lock down home-court advantage in the playoffs. "I think everybody in that locker room knows how important it is," said Denver coach George Karl, whose team is 37-3 at home. "It's a little harder on the road. I don't care who you play, it's a little harder to win the game on the road. There's got to be a little more focus, a little more discipline."