DENVER (AP) — With the clock ticking down and the game-ending play on the verge of imploding, Randy Foye rose above the chaos to win it for the Nuggets at the buzzer.
Foye connected a 3-pointer from well beyond the top of the key, and Denver overcame a 36-point performance by Blake Griffin to beat the Los Angeles Clippers 116-115 on Monday night.
"They were trying to go quick; we blew the play up," Clippers coach Doc Rivers said. "Give Foye credit. He didn't stop. He just came and got the ball and made a shot."
Matt Barnes had given the Clippers a 115-113 lead on a 3-pointer with 6.2 seconds left. After a timeout, the Nuggets inbounded the ball and J.J. Hickson first tried to get the ball to Wilson Chandler, who was cutting underneath the basket.
But with the Clippers clogging the lane, he instead dished the ball to Foye, who drove from the wing to the middle of the floor, got a step on Griffin, pulled up and heaved a shot from 30-feet away. Swish.
"Man, it's just pandemonium," said Foye, who fell to the floor and was swarmed by teammates. "It's just, 'Whew.' Chills went through my body. Teammates jumped on me. I think somebody hurt my leg but I didn't feel it. I didn't feel anything. I went numb. It's just an unbelievable feeling."
Griffin said Foye just made a tough shot.
"I thought we played it well," Griffin said. "I switched out. I contested. I didn't want to get too close. Obviously, I didn't want to foul a guy shooting a 30-footer. It's on me. I've got to be better in that situation I guess."
It was the first game-winning shot of Foye's career.
"Randy works hard and when that shot went in, I just had to go hug him, because I was excited for him and excited for our team," said Kenneth Faried, who finished with a career-high 28 points and 11 rebounds.
Ty Lawson, who missed the last four games with a shoulder injury, added 27 points and J.J. Hickson had 17 points and 12 rebounds.
"It was nice to finally get a break to go our way," Nuggets coach Brian Shaw said. "Our guys really, really fought the entire night. Obviously, we overcame a great game from Blake Griffin and Jamal Crawford off the bench."