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Timofey Mozgov representing Nuggets well at 2012 Olympics

Center playing key role as Russia advances to semifinals in London

Denver Nuggets center Timofey Mozgov averaged 11.8 points and 4.2 rebounds in five games for Russia in the preliminary round at the 2012 Olympics.
Christian Petersen/NBAE/Getty Images

As the men's basketball competition takes center stage at the 2012 Olympics, center Timofey Mozgov is the only Denver Nuggets player competing in London.

He certainly is representing his NBA team – and his native Russia – well.

Mozgov scored 17 points and grabbed four rebounds to help Russia advance to the semifinals with an 83-74 win over Lithuania on Wednesday.

In six Olympic games, Mozgov is averaging 12.7 points and 4.2 rebounds while shooting 31-of-45 (.689) from the field. In addition to his big game Wednesday, he scored the go-ahead basket on a dunk with 18 seconds left against Brazil in the preliminary round.

The production comes as little surprise to Nuggets executives and coaches. Mozgov is constantly working to improve his game, and he performed well during Denver’s first-round playoff series against the Los Angeles Lakers.

Nuggets executive vice president of basketball operations Masai Ujiri is attending the games in London and spent a full day with Mozgov. The visit included a trip to the house where the Russian team is staying.

“Timo has been great,” Ujiri said. “He’s looking very good. You can see his confidence playing against the best players in the world.”

Mozgov, 26, was a key component of the three-team, 13-player trade between the Nuggets, New York Knicks andMinnesota Timberwolves on Feb. 22, 2011.

He started 35 of 44 games last season, averaging 5.4 points and 4.1 rebounds in 15.6 minutes.