The Denver Nuggets nabbed their 26th win of the season against the Houston Rockets on Wednesday, in what turned out to be a milestone night for two members of the team. Coach George Karl came away with his 1,100th career win and guard Andre Iguodala scored his 10,000th career point against Houston. Karl passed Larry Brown for 6th place on the All-Time wins list and is now 56 wins away from passing the great Phil Jackson for 5th on that list. Thanks to a monster 30-11 run in the third quarter, the Nuggets were able to beat the Rockets once again, 105-95 in Houston.
It was a team win for Denver, as five players scored at least 14 points in the victory. Ty Lawson and Wilson Chandler led the way for Denver, both sparking the enormous 30-11 run in the third quarter that the Nuggets had. Lawson finished with 21 points, seven assists and two steals against Houston and was aggressive from the get go. When the Rockets took a 55-52 lead in the third quarter, Lawson was the one who spearheaded the Nuggets 30-11 run. He did a great job of setting the tempo, getting steals, scoring in transition and creating for others with his dribble penetration during that span. Chandler on the other hand provided 20 points, six rebounds and three steals of his own this game. Chandler hit two big three’s for Denver in the second and third quarter, while scoring nine of his 20 points in the fourth. He created some turnovers in the third quarter, while also doing a phenomenal job of boxing out on the defensive end, securing rebounds. Since returning to the Nuggets line-up, Chandler has averaged 12.6 points, 5.4 rebounds and 1.8 steals per game.
Gallinari and McGee also gave the Nuggets good minutes, both having a hand in Denver’s great third quarter performance. Gallo hit multiple three’s, finishing with 18 points, while also giving the Nuggets a lift on the defensive end with three blocks. McGee scored 14 points, recorded three blocks and had the highlight of the game when he threw a alley-oop to himself in the third quarter. Andre Iguodala in a milestone night for him, recorded 14 points, six rebounds, five assists and three steals for the Nuggets as well. Iguodala did a nice job of getting to the rim, scoring down low and hitting his free throws(went 4/5 from the charity strike). He made smart decisions with the ball all game and was very active on the defensive end for Denver.
The Nuggets did a phenomenal job of forcing the Rockets into mistakes, Houston committed 23 turnovers. Denver recorded 13 steals as a team, scored 28 points off of Houston’s turnovers and had 22 fast break points. The Nuggets also did a really good job of rebounding the ball as a team, five players had six rebounds for the mile high crew. Denver did play poor transition defense throughout the game, mainly in the 1st half as the Rockets scored 22 fast break points. Houston also benefited from 15 Nuggets turnovers(four of which were Ty Lawson’s), scoring 20 points off of those mistakes.
Denver now will move on to play the Sacramento Kings tonight, at home. Tip-off is set for 7:00 pm mountain time and will be on Altitude Sports. The Nuggets won the first meeting against the Kings, 122-97 where they scored 64 points in the paint and shot 41% from beyond the arc. Denver was led by JaVale McGee in the first game, where he scored 19 points and had three blocks. Sacramento is 16-28 on the season, losing seven of their last ten games. They are led by center DeMarcus Cousins who is averaging 17.9 points and 10.6 rebounds per game this season. A key in tonight’s game for Denver, will be taking care of the ball on offense and not allowing the Kings to score in transition off of turnovers. The Nuggets will look to get their third straight and seventeenth home victory tonight against the Kings.
Tags: NBA Basketball Denver Nuggets Houston Rockets George Karl Ty Lawson Wilson Chandler Danilo Gallinari JaVale McGee Andre Iguodala James Harden Jeremy Lin Chandler Parsons Sacramento Kings DeMarcus Cous