Game Preview: Nuggets-Rockets

Denver concludes two-game trip in Houston
by Aaron Lopez

With six games remaining in an injury-plagued season, the Denver Nuggets are rallying around a common theme.

“We're staying strong, trying to fight and trying to play as hard as we can,” Nuggets forward Darrell Arthur said.

“We're just trying to fight,” said guard Evan Fournier. “We know we're not going to make the playoffs, so we're just trying to improve and get better as a team so we can be a good team next season.”

“We have to fight until the last game,” center Timofey Mozgov said.

The Nuggets wrap up a two-game road trip Sunday against the Houston Rockets. They could be without starting point guard Ty Lawson, who left Friday’s game at Memphis with a sprained ankle.

The Rockets are fighting for home-court advantage in the first round of the NBA playoffs. They are 30-8 at Toyota Center and have won 12 of their past 13 home games.

Despite 17 assists from Lawson, the Nuggets lost their only meeting against Houston on Nov. 16. The two teams play again in Denver on Wednesday.


WHEN: 5 p.m. MT
WHERE: Toyota Center, Houston
TV; RADIO: Altitude; AM-950

DENVER (33-43)

F Quincy Miller
F Kenneth Faried
C Timofey Mozgov
G Randy Foye
G Ty Lawson

HOUSTON (50-25)
F Chandler Parsons
F Terrence Jones
C Omer Asik
G James Harden
G Jeremy Lin

Lawson (sprained ankle) is day-to-day; Wilson Chandler (groin), Danilo Gallinari (knee), J.J. Hickson (knee), JaVale McGee (stress fracture, left tibia) and Nate Robinson (knee) are out.
HOUSTON: Dwight Howard (ankle) is day-to-day; Patrick Beverly (knee) and Greg Smith (knee) are out.

Denver has gone 9-15 in the last 24 road games against the Rockets since the 2001-02 season, but have won four out of the last five in Houston . . . The Nuggets have struggled overall against the Rockets for the past two decades, having gone 36-58 (.383) vs. Houston since 1990-91 . . . Denver has played more overtime games against Houston than any other franchise in the NBA (12) . . . The Nuggets won the season series 4-0 in 2012-13, just the third season series win against Houston since 2000-01 (3-1) and only the fourth since 1993-94 (3-2) . . . The Rockets and Nuggets have split the season series six times in the last 14 years