It could have been a tie for the eighth seed in the Western Conference, but Portland was able to stave off Denver in a 122-113 shootout. The Trail Blazers were able to secure a double-digit lead heading into the fourth quarter after holding the Nuggets to just 21 points in the third. They hit nearly 50 percent of their shots and overcame a weak showing at the foul line, converting 24-of-33 free throws. Denver is now one game back of the eighth seed but remains firmly in the battle to reach the playoffs.

Balanced attack not enough for Nuggets

Six different players scored 13 or more points for Denver on Tuesday night.

Point guard Jameer Nelson (9.1 ppg, 5.1 apg) had the best showing with 23 points on an efficient 8-for-11 shooting. He hit four 3-pointers, aiding in the best offensive night he's seen in a while. Prior this contest, he was held to six or fewer points in the last four games.

Other notables for the Nuggets include shooting guard Gary Harris (14.8 ppg) with 19 points on 8-of-14 shooting and small forward Wilson Chandler (16 ppg, 6.5 rpg) with 17 points on 7-of-13 shooting and 9 rebounds.

Tandem of McCollum and Nurkic lead Trail Blazers to victory

The offensive shootout saw both teams make a combined 89 field goals, but the Blazers lived up to their name by edging out the competition and putting up a whopping 122 points on the board.

Their edge on the scoreboard came from the free throw line despite hitting just 72 percent of the freebies. It also came from two players that eclipsed the 30-point mark.

Shooting guard C.J. McCollum (23.3 ppg, 3.5 apg) went off with 39 points on 15-of-24 shooting. Center Jusuf Nurkic (10 ppg, 7.1 rpg) complimented that with 33 points and 16 rebounds.

He was stunningly efficient hitting 12-of-15 of his field goal attempts. Both players converted combined 15-of-17 free throws. They also accounted for nearly 60 percent of the team's points.

Next up, the Trail Blazers will host Houston on Thursday night while the Nuggets will travel to Charlotte on Friday night.

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