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NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Friday, December 20th (All times Eastern)
Phoenix Suns (14-10) at Denver Nuggets (14-10), 9 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Phoenix Suns saw their five-game winning streak disappear, but will try to start a new one Friday night at the Pepsi Center against the Denver Nuggets.
The Pepsi Center has traditionally been a difficult place for the opposition to win and it's been true for the most part this season. Denver is 7-4 in its own building, but the Nuggets have dropped two of their last three at home.
The Suns are a respectable 6-6 away from Phoenix and have won two straight as the visitor.
It was at home where the streak ended.
The Suns fell to the San Antonio Spurs, 108-101 on Wednesday. The Spurs were without Tony Parker, but it didn't matter as they held on in the end despite Phoenix taking the lead with 5:10 remaining.
"I think we're past that point of moral victories," head coach Jeff Hornacek said. "Yeah we made a run, but there's runs throughout the game. We didn't finish very well. That's the way we look at it."
Channing Frye led the Suns with 22 points, followed by 18 from Goran Dragic and 15 out of Eric Bledsoe. The strong backcourt scored, but went 12-for-33 from the field.
Miles Plumlee registered a double-double with 13 points and 13 rebounds. Markieff Morris scored 12 off the bench.
The Nuggets have been inconsistent of late, rotating wins and losses over their last four. Friday will end a four-game homestand, but Denver is only 1-2.
On Tuesday, the Nuggets fell at home to the Oklahoma City Thunder, 105-93. Many teams have lost at home to the Thunder, but Denver's other loss on this stay was to the Utah Jazz, a team with four road wins all season.
Against OKC, Denver struggled on the interior, going 23-for-49 from inside the paint and 1-for-11 on shot attempts following an offensive board.
"We have to take better pride of finishing at the rim," Nuggets center J.J. Hickson said. "Tonight was one of those nights."
Hickson led the way for Denver with 20 points and 14 rebounds, including five on the offensive glass. Ty Lawson also had a double-double with 17 points and 13 assists.
Wilson Chandler and Kenneth Faried managed 13 points apiece and Nate Robinson scored 12 off the bench.
The Nuggets will be a man short on Friday as Jordan Hamilton was suspended a game for punching Oklahoma City's Steven Adams on the shoulder Tuesday night.
The Suns beat Denver by 11 in Phoenix on Nov. 8, but the Nuggets have won eight of the last 10 meetings between the two teams. Phoenix has lost five straight and 10 of 11 in the Mile High City.
12/20 10:27:02 ET
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