Paul Millsap had a season-high 25 points, Nikola Jokic added 24, and the host Denver Nuggets beat the shorthanded Minnesota Timberwolves 128-116 on Sunday night.
Jamal Murray had 19 points, Gary Harris and Monte Morris had 13 apiece and Jerami Grant added 12 for Denver, which has won eight straight against the Timberwolves.
Kelan Martin scored a career-high 21 points, including 19 in the first half, while Malik Beasley had 17 in a balanced Minnesota attack. Jordan McLaughlin had 15 points and 10 assists, Jarret Culver had 14 points and Naz Reid added 13 for the Timberwolves.
Minnesota had just nine players available. Karl-Anthony Towns is out at least two weeks with a left wrist fracture, Allen Crabbe was out for personal reasons and guard D’Angelo Russell sat for maintenance.
Denver had 73 points in the first half, a season high, but still only led by three at 80-77 midway through the third quarter. Mason Plumlee’s layup at the end of the period gave the Nuggets a 97-87 lead.
Denver scored nine quick points to take a 106-91 lead in the fourth quarter. Juancho Hernangomez’s 3-pointer with 8:56 left capped a 9-0 run for the Wolves but the Nuggets put it away by scoring 18 of the next 20 points.
Millsap’s layup with 3:53 left gave him his season high and put the Nuggets up by 22.
Minnesota played Denver tough after falling behind by nine early in the game. Beasley, who was traded to Minnesota along with Hernangomez and Jarred Vanderbilt on Feb. 6, had 12 points in the first half to help keep the Wolves in the game.
Martin scored seven points in a span of 1:06 midway through the second quarter to put Minnesota ahead 60-56 but the Nuggets finished the half on an 18-5 run to lead 73-65 at the break.
Millsap hit his first seven shots before finally missing a 3-pointer in the final minute of the second quarter. Jokic hit his first six shots before missing a layup early in the third. Denver shot 68.2 percent in the first half.
The Nuggets finished at 58.9 percent shooting for the game.