Nuggets aim to stay hot at home against Rockets
(Sports Network) - There are just a handful of teams in the NBA sporting nearly unblemished home records. The Denver Nuggets are one of them and will look to keep the reputation going Wednesday versus the Houston Rockets.
The Nuggets are 18-3 at the Pepsi Center this season and have won three in a row there, including Monday's 102-101 decision over the Indiana Pacers. Andre Iguodala was fouled with 0.5 seconds left in regulation on a lob pass from Andre Miller, and sank the first one to break a tie.
Iguodala, in his first season with Denver since a summer trade, purposely missed the second foul shot to run out the clock.
"I thought he got fouled. I didn't think it was a bad call," said Denver coach George Karl. "In a perfect scenario, he would have come wide open; he came partially open. He threw the ball; Andre (Miller) makes good decisions and he put the ball in a place where I thought he got fouled."
Iguodala finished with 13 points, 10 rebounds and seven assists, while Danilo Gallinari scored 27 points and Ty Lawson added 18 points, seven assists and five steals in the victory. The Nuggets have won four straight overall and 10 of their last 12 games, and are sixth in the West standings.
The Nuggets, who are fourth in the NBA with 103.5 ppg but 24th in opponents' scoring (100.5 ppg), still have New Orleans, Milwaukee and Chicago scheduled to visit the Rocky Mountains.
In injury news for Denver, forward Wilson Chandler (groin) and center JaVale McGee (tibia) are both questionable versus the Rockets.
Wednesday's game should be a high-scoring affair as Houston sits second in the NBA with 104.9 ppg and is only 27th in defense, allowing 102.4 ppg.
The Rockets have won three in a row and four of their last five games, and recorded a 125-80 blasting of the Utah Jazz the last time out Monday night. James Harden, who is fifth in the NBA with 26.0 ppg, scored 25 points and Jeremy Lin registered 12 points and seven assists. Harden is averaging 27.2 ppg in his last five for Houston, which appears to have righted the ship following a seven-game slide.
"Our guys played the right way, sharing the basketball and making the right play. Our guys have the confidence to knock down shots and it is hard to guard us when we're playing that way," Harden said after the Rockets handed the Jazz their worst home loss in team history.
It was the first NBA game this season in which a team outscored its opponent by a margin of at least six points in each quarter. Omer Asik matched his career-best 19 rebounds and Houston led by as many as 50 points.
The Houston bench outscored Utah's reserves, 60-41, and the team made 52.8 percent from the field. The Rockets, who are 10-14 on the road and have won three straight as the guest, have scored 100-plus points in each of the last three games and have a 73-18 advantage in fastbreak points in that span.
Houston has lost the first two meetings with Denver this season -- both at home -- and five straight overall. The two teams have split the previous 12 matchups at the Pepsi Center and will meet again April 6.
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