Nuggets-Kings Preview

After beating one of the top teams in the Western Conference,
the Denver Nuggets hope to take their home-court success on the
road.

They might have that opportunity against the struggling
Sacramento Kings.

The Nuggets will try to win their sixth straight in this series
and send the Kings to a fourth consecutive loss on Sunday
night.

After winning twice on a five-game trip, Denver (12-12) heads
back on the road following a 99-94 victory over Memphis on
Friday.

Andre Miller scored 18 points, including four free-throws in the
final 10 seconds to key a statement-making victory over the
Grizzlies.

“Against a really good team, that was a really good win for us,”
said Danilo Gallinari, who had 14 points. “We were able to do the
right things at the right time at the end of the game.”

The Nuggets have been able to do all the right things at home,
winning six of seven there while averaging 103.1 points.

However, they’ve had trouble continuing that success on the
road, where they are 6-11.

Defense has been the team’s biggest problem away from Denver,
allowing 103.5 points in road games compared to 94.0 at home.

Andre Iguodala has been one of the biggest culprits. The
first-year Nugget has averaged 16.9 points and 9.3 rebounds with a
52.9 field-goal percentage at home, but has been limited to 12.6
points and 5.3 boards while shooting 39.2 percent in road
games.

Denver is one of the league’s best offensive teams and that
could continue against a Sacramento squad that has allowed 110.0
points during its three-game losing streak.

That skid followed a season-high three-game win streak for the
Kings (7-15), who capped a four-game trip with a 113-103 loss at
Oklahoma City on Friday.

Sacramento did rally back from a 24-point deficit to cut the
Thunder’s lead to 103-98 in the fourth quarter.

“I thought our guys played and competed,” coach Keith Smart
said.

Isaiah Thomas sparked the comeback, scoring a season-high 26
points on 10-of-13 shooting off the bench. He scored 23 in the
fourth quarter – two shy of Mitch Richmond’s Sacramento-era
record for points in a period.

The guard had totaled 15 points in his previous three games.

“The big thing with me, I score in bunches, so if I make a
couple, I feel like I can keep it going,” Thomas told the team’s
official website.

Tyreke Evans finished with 21 points, giving him 38 in two games
since returning from missing five of six contests because of a knee
injury.

Evans has averaged 18.5 points in eight career games against the
Nuggets, including a 27-point performance in 119-116 overtime loss
in the teams’ last meeting March 5.

While DeMarcus Cousins finished with 10 points in his return
from a one-game suspension Friday, the Kings are expected to be
without reserve guard Marcus Thornton (personal) for a third
straight game.

Cousins had 17 points and 15 rebounds in the Kings’ 122-93 loss
to Denver in the only meeting in Sacramento last season.

The Nuggets have scored at least 100 points in 18 of their last
19 meetings with the Kings and had 99 in the lone exception.