Nuggets hope to stay on track against Kings

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( - The Denver Nuggets will take their three-game winning streak into Sleep Train Arena Friday night to take on the Sacramento Kings, minus one key player.

The Nuggets traded starting center Timofey Mozgov to the Cleveland Cavaliers in exchange for two protected first-round picks. Mozgov averaged 8.5 ppg and 7.8 rpg this season.

Denver has won three straight with two coming at home and one on the road. Most recently, the Nuggets defeated the Orlando Magic, 93-90, at home on Wednesday.

Ty Lawson scored 23 points in the victory. Arron Afflalo added 17 points and six rebounds for the Nuggets, who have won six in a row at home against Orlando.

Nate Robinson and Wilson Chandler tallied 13 and 12 points, respectively, while J.J. Hickson contributed 11 points and 10 rebounds. Rookie center Jusuf Nurkic ended with eight points and two blocks for the Nuggets in his first NBA start.

The Nuggets nearly blew a 10-point lead with less than six minutes to go. The Magic had a chance to tie following misses by Lawson and Robinson, but Evan Fournier's last-second 3-pointer fell short.

"A win is a win is a win, but I was not happy with the fourth quarter and the way we finished the game, at all," said Nuggets coach Brian Shaw.

The Kings have won two of their last three, including a home blowout of the Oklahoma City Thunder on Wednesday. Sacramento clobbered OKC, 104-83, and has won two straight at home.

Rudy Gay had 28 points and nine rebounds to lead the Kings.

Darren Collison made a career-high five 3-pointers en route to 24 points for the Kings, who snapped a 12-game losing streak against Oklahoma City. DeMarcus Cousins contributed 23 points and 15 rebounds, but did pick up his fourth technical foul of the season.

"I thought tonight was the first night in a long time where we really committed on the defensive end," Collison said. "I don't know if it was the stage of the game playing a team like OKC, but I thought our urgency was really high tonight."

The Kings held the Thunder to 32.6 percent shooting from the field and just 30 percent from long range. Sacramento forced 24 turnovers, which it turned into 26 points.

The Kings have won both meetings this season against the Nuggets and have taken three straight and four of the last five. Denver is 5-2 in its previous seven in California's capital.