Spurs pay a visit to Denver

(SportsNetwork.com) - The San Antonio Spurs have won three straight and will try to continue their fine form Tuesday night when they visit the Pepsi Center to face the Denver Nuggets.

The defending NBA champions have taken five of six, including two of three on the road. San Antonio will travel to Chicago to face the Bulls on Thursday, which ends this mini road trip and foreshadows a six-game homestand.

On Sunday, the Spurs won with defense in an 89-69 victory over the Utah Jazz at AT&T Center.

Five Spurs reached double figures in a balanced effort, and San Antonio held Utah to 33.3 percent shooting. Utah's 69 points was a season-low for a Spurs' opponent.

Tiago Splitter had 14 points, Danny Green scored 13, and Kawhi Leonard and Aron Baynes posted 12 apiece in the dominant victory.

The Spurs won their second straight game in convincing fashion since Leonard returned to the lineup after missing the last 15 games with a torn ligament in his hand. The reigning NBA champs are 17-7 with him in the lineup this season.

"He always impacts the game. Whether it's the person he is guarding or giving help and making a steal, rebounding the basketball, scoring. He always has an impact on the game," Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said.

Tim Duncan was the final San Antonio player in double figures with 11.

The Nuggets have dropped three straight following a five-game winning streak. Two of those setbacks came on the road, but Denver begins a three-game homestand Tuesday, which will also feature visits from the Boston Celtics and Washington Wizards.

Denver's most recent defeat was demoralizing to say the least. On Monday, the Nuggets stopped by Oracle Arena and left with a 122-79 loss to the Golden State Warriors.

Ty Lawson netted 19 points and six rebounds for the Nuggets. Jameer Nelson totaled 14 points and dished out five assists in defeat. No other Denver player cracked double figures.

"It's a shame," said Nuggets coach Brian Shaw. "When you're playing the best team in the league right now and you play that way and you perform that way, I don't know, it's tough to swallow."

Stats don't lie, especially in 43-point blowouts. Golden State shot 54.3 percent from the field, 48.1 percent from long range, grabbed 53 rebounds, handed out 30 assists on 44 made field goals and committed 13 turnovers.

Denver shot 34.5 percent from the floor, 29.2 percent from the 3-point arc, had 39 boards, 17 assists and 16 turnovers.

The Spurs beat the Nuggets in Denver on Dec. 14 and have taken four straight between the two teams. San Antonio has won three in a row in the Mile High City.