NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Tuesday, February 15th (All times eastern)
Denver Nuggets (23-28) at Atlanta Hawks (10-39), 7 p.m.
(Sports Network) - George Karl is not a miracle worker, but he is making quick progress with the young Denver Nuggets. Karl will look to take another step in the maturation process with his new team tonight, when the Nuggets continue a five-game road trip against the lowly Atlanta Hawks at Philips Arena.
Denver has dropped two of its first three on its current swing to fall to 8-19 in foreign buildings this season. The Nuggets are 6-3 in nine games since Karl took over the reins.
The Nuggets will be trying to halt a 14-game losing streak in Atlanta this evening. Denver hasn't beat the Hawks on the road since Dec. 10, 1988. Atlanta has won seven consecutive contests in this series overall.
Denver struggled on Sunday in a 94-79 loss to the New Jersey Nets at Continental Airlines Arena. Carmelo Anthony led the Nuggets with 18 points and Kenyon Martin, who played his first game in New Jersey since being traded to Denver, had 13 points in the losing effort. Rodney White came off the bench to score 12.
The Nuggets shot 43 percent from the field, including 3-of-9 (.333) from three-point range. Denver hit 20-of-30 (.667) from the free throw line. The Nuggets committed 20 turnovers in the loss, leading to 23 New Jersey points.
Nene sprained the MCL in his left knee during the second quarter when attempting to grab a rebound. The power forward was placed on the injured list with a second-degree sprain of the left medial collateral ligament on Monday.
The Nuggets could get a lift from the return of center Marcus Camby, who has missed 1 1/2 games with a bruised right hip. Denver is expected to sign veteran center Mark Pope to replace Nene on the roster.
Atlanta has struggled as of late with nine losses in 11 games and 12 of its last 15 games. The Hawks' woes continued on Saturday, as they dropped a 113-83 decision to the Milwaukee Bucks at the Bradley Center.
Antoine Walker compiled 21 points and 10 rebounds for the Hawks, who have dropped five of six and fell to a dismal 2-21 on the road. Rookie Josh Childress had a career-high 20 points and also grabbed 10 boards in Atlanta's 14th straight setback away from home.
Donta Smith added 12 points and Obinna Ekezie chipped in 10 for the Hawks. Atlanta shot just 39 percent from the field, including only 1-of-8 (.125) from three-point range. The Hawks drained 22-of-28 (.786) from the free throw line.
Atlanta activated forward Josh Smith from the injured list prior to the game and placed guard Kenny Anderson on the IL with a strained left hamstring. Smith started but managed just two points in 24 minutes and was 0-of-6 from the field.
Tyronn Lue (strained left Achilles) and Predrag Drobnjak (sprained left ankle) sat out Saturday's game. Lue won't return until next week, while Drobnjak is out indefinitely.
Atlanta, which has lost three of five and four of its last seven home games, is 8-18 in its friendly confines this season. The Hawks are playing their lone home game in the midst of nine road tilts.
02/15 10:18:07 ET