Bucks at Nuggets
As Ty Lawson’s performance has picked up, so too have the fortunes of the Denver Nuggets. Lawson’s recent stretch of sparkling play as floor general has helped carry his squad to six straight wins. The Nuggets will attempt to make it seven in a row when they host the Milwaukee Bucks on Tuesday in the first meeting between the teams this season. Denver has controlled the series of late, winning the past four encounters.
Milwaukee continues to keep pace in the Eastern Conference with interim coach Jim Boylan at the helm. The Bucks have won nine of 14 since Boylan took over for the fired Scott Skiles, including a 107-98 triumph over Orlando on Saturday that snapped a brief two-game skid. Milwaukee has the seventh-best record in the Eastern Conference. The Bucks are 12-11 on the road.
TV: 9 p.m. ET, Fox Sports Wisconsin (Milwaukee), Altitude (Denver)
ABOUT THE BUCKS (25-21): Winning in Denver has always been a challenge for the Bucks, who are 9-36 all time in the Mile High City. Star guard Monta Ellis has a simple solution for overcoming the streaking Nuggets. “Go in there with a lot of intensity, be aggressive and hopefully come out with a win," said Ellis, who had 21 points and 11 assists against the Magic. Larry Sanders continues to impress, particularly defensively, as he blocked six shots in the win, extending his NBA-high total to 137.
ABOUT THE NUGGETS (30-18): Lawson notched 21 points and 13 assists in a 113-98 victory over New Orleans on Friday, and is averaging 20.4 points, 7.4 assists and 2.8 steals over his past five outings. Another strong performance could help the Nuggets win seven straight for the first time since Nov. 20-Dec. 5, 2010. Andre Iguodala, the All-star forward acquired during the offseason, had a game-high 24 points Friday for his second-highest scoring output of the season.
1. Nuggets center JaVale McGee has missed three games with a shin injury but is expected to return against the Bucks after an MRI exam showed he doesn't have a fracture.
2. High-scoring Denver has failed to reach 100 points just once in the past eight games.
3. Ersan Ilyasova has made at least two three pointers in eight straight games for the Bucks.
Nuggets 109, Bucks 102.