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Nuggets roll past Rockets
Houston, TX (Sports Network) - Ty Lawson posted 21 points, seven assists and four rebounds to lead the Denver Nuggets past the reeling Houston Rockets, 105-95, at Toyota Center.
Wilson Chandler followed with 20 points off the bench, while Danilo Gallinari poured in 18 points and Andre Iguodala and JaVale McGee each netted 14 for the Nuggets, who have won two straight and eight of 10 overall.
With the win, Nuggets coach George Karl notched his 1,100th career victory.
"I'll probably have a ball signed by the players and put it in my trophy case and drink a few beers someday remembering," Karl said about the win. "I'm at a stage at my career where fortunately I've been around and still loved the game, and it's a privilege to coach a good basketball team."
James Harden scored a game-high 23 points for Houston, which also received 15 points from Carlos Delfino in its ninth loss in 10 games.
Patrick Patterson and Marcus Morris scored 10 points apiece in the defeat.
"I think right now we are low on confidence. There is no question," Rockets coach Kevin McHale said. "You can see it with our guys and we're going to have to pump them up and get them believing again."
Houston jumped out to an early 7-2 lead before Denver reeled off 11 straight points to go on top, 13-7, at the midpoint of the first quarter.
Chandler Parsons put an end to the run with a 3-pointer, but the Nuggets' offense continued to roll by scoring 12 of the next 16 points to take a 25-14 advantage with about three minutes remaining in the frame.
The Rockets managed to cut their deficit to 27-21 heading into the second quarter, where Morris and Delfino each connected on a triple during an 8-4 push to bring Houston back within 31-29.
But the Rockets would get no closer until Harden scored the first five points of a 12-0 spurt to hand Houston a 44-40 lead with 1:23 remaining in the half.
Denver, however, netted the final six points of the second quarter to take a 46-44 edge into the break.
It remained a one-possession game in the third quarter as the teams went back- and-forth on the court until Gallinari scored four straight points to spark a 15-2 run that put Denver ahead for good, 72-59, with just under four minutes left in the third.
The Nuggets held a double-digit lead for the rest of the third quarter and stretched its advantage up to as much as 16 on three separate occasions en route to an 82-66 cushion heading into the fourth.
Houston got no closer than the result in the fourth quarter as the Nuggets cruised to the victory.
Iguodala recorded his 10,000th career point in the contest ... The Nuggets have won five straight games over the Rockets ... Denver held a 41-38 advantage on the glass ... The Nuggets scored 28 points off 23 Houston turnovers ... Denver turned the ball over 15 times, leading to 20 points for the Rockets.
01/24 00:03:43 ET