Nuggets put winning streak on line against Utah Jazz

Denver seeking payback for Dec. 13 home loss
by Aaron Lopez

Fresh off a 4-2 road trip, the ides of December caught up with the Denver Nuggets when the Utah Jazz came into Pepsi Center and departed with a victory.

The Dec. 13 loss marked the start of a downward trend for Denver as the Nuggets dropped nine of 10 games, including eight in a row from Dec. 17 through Jan. 1.

The Nuggets are hoping the ides of January prove more fruitful.

Rolling once again, Denver (19-17) will take a five-game winning streak into Utah on Monday night against the Jazz, who could be without leading scorer Gordon Hayward (hip flexor).

“They beat us at our home spot last time, beat us pretty good, too,” Nuggets point guard Ty Lawson said. “I think we’re focused. Everybody’s going to be up for this game. The incentive is going to be high.”

Lawson has been a catalyst in January, recording five double-doubles in six games this month. Former Jazz guard Randy Foye also is sizzling, averaging 21.7 points in the past three games. Foye also is 16-for-29 from 3-point range during that stretch.

In addition, the Nuggets could get a boost from the return of forward Wilson Chandler, who has missed the past two games with a left hip strain.


WHEN: 7 p.m. MT
WHERE: EnergySolutions Arena, Salt Lake City
TV; RADIO: Altitude; AM-950

DENVER (19-17)

F Quincy Miller
F Kenneth Faried
C J.J. Hickson
G Randy Foye
G Ty Lawson

UTAH (12-26)
F Richard Jefferson
F Marvin Williams
C Derrick Favors
G Alec Burks
G Trey Burke

Wilson Chandler (left hip strain) is probable; Darrell Arthur (groin strain), Danilo Gallinari (knee), JaVale McGee (fractured left tibia) and Anthony Randolph (sprained ankle) are out.
UTAH: Gordon Hayward (left hip flexor) and Williams (flulike symptoms) are game-time decisions.

The Nuggets and Jazz have split two meetings this season, which the road team winning both games . . . Denver is 6-10 at Utah since 2005-06, but has gone 5-3 on the road since 2009-10 . . . The Nuggets are just 13-17 overall against the Jazz since 2005-06 . . . The Jazz franchise has had more 40-point performances against the Nuggets than any other team in the NBA. Eighteen Jazz players have scored 40+ versus Denver since 1976-77 (next closest would be nine by Houston). Of the 18 40-point performances, 11 of those were done by former Nuggets assistant coach Adrian Dantley . . . The Nuggets went 3-1 against the Jazz in 2009-10, marking their first series win over Utah since the 2003-04 season (3-1) . . . Denver and Utah met in the opening round of the 2010 NBA Playoffs, with the fifth-seeded Jazz knocking off the fourth-seeded Nuggets (4-2).