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NBA Preview from The Sports Network



Friday, March 25th (All times eastern)

Washington Wizards (17-53) at Denver Nuggets (43-29), 9 p.m.

(Sports Network) - The Denver Nuggets have made the playoffs in each of the past seven years and hope to cash in on an eighth straight appearance soon, as they resume a four-game homestand tonight versus the Washington Wizards.

The Nuggets are fifth in the Western Conference and have won two straight and six of their last eight games, including Wednesday's 115-112 win over the NBA- best San Antonio Spurs from the Pepsi Center. Al Harrington scored 27 points off the bench and both Raymond Felton and J.R. Smith had 18 points.

Danilo Gallinari and Ty Lawson had 13 and 12 points, respectively, for the Nuggets, who have won eight in a row at home and are 29-7 in the Rocky Mountains this season. Wilson Chandler had eight points and hit a jumper down the stretch to put Denver up to stay.

"Gotta give a lot of credit to the team. Without them, we wouldn't have been that close for me to make the shot," said Chandler, who also had a career-best six blocked shots. "It was a big team effort."

Denver will also host Sacramento on the current residency. Gallinari is averaging 18.4 points in his last fives games and Lawson is posting 15.9 points over the previous 11 contests.

Washington will resume a five-game road trip tonight and is a miserable 1-33 outside the nation's capital this season. It has lost the first two portions of the road swing and suffered a 127-119 double-overtime loss against the Los Angeles Clippers on Wednesday. Clippers rookie Blake Griffin had his first career triple- double with 33 points, 17 rebounds and 10 assists.

Wizards rookie John Wall totaled 32 points, 10 assists and five boards while Jordan Crawford had 25 points, 10 assists and seven rebounds for Washington, which has lost eight of nine games overall.

"We didn't make the right reads at the end and they took the game away from us," said Wall, who is averaging 18.9 points, 8.1 assists and 5.6 rebounds in 16 games since the All-Star Break.

Wall leads all Eastern Conference rookies in points, assists and steals this month and became the first Wizards rookie to record at least 32 points, 10 assists and five rebounds in a game since Earl Monroe did it back in 1968. Wall needs three more steals to become the first player in franchise history to record 500 assists and 100 thefts during their rookie campaign.

Crawford is averaging 16.3 ppg this month (11 games). Wizards leading scorer Nick Young has missed five straight games with a bruised left knee and is questionable for Friday's game. He is averaging a career-best 17.7 ppg.

The Wizards will also visit Golden State and Utah on the road swing. They have dropped eight in a row as the visitor.

03/25 11:07:22 ET


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