The last time the Mavs played the Nuggets, they saw an energetic team that wouldn't quit on offense. Allen Iverson, Carmelo Anthony and Linas Kleiza all had huge games while the Mavs got decent performances from Dirk and Stack and everyone else struggled. The Mavs have now lost two in a row to the Nuggets.
Since the last time...
Since the Nuggets defeated the Mavs 122-109 on Dec. 6, the Nuggets have gone 14-8, which has been enough to successfully stave off the charge of those pesky Portland Trail Blazers and the underperforming Utah Jazz thus far. They stand at 26-16 and are 1.5 games ahead of both of those teams by winning four of their last five games.
Two starting All-Stars
Carmelo Anthony and Allen Iverson were both voted starters to the All-Star Game, which marks the first time any Nugget was voted as a starter since Alex English had the honor in 1989. It also marks the first time in 28 years that two Nuggets have been voted to start in the All-Star game in the same year. In 1979, David Thompson and George McGinnis were both named starters and Thompson won the game's MVP award.
Linas providing a boost
Third-year Lithuanian forward Linas Kleiza has really shined this season and is providing a big scoring boost for the Nuggets off the bench. In his last 10 games, he is averaging 15.9 points and 6.3 rebounds and shooting well from long range. He's averaging career highs in almost everything and has helped ease the load when Carmelo and Iverson need a rest. The Mavs really need to watch out for him as he has been very hot lately. In his last five games, he has had three 20-plus outings and a 41-point performance.
Can the Nuggets continue to outscore their way to a divisional title?
-Scooter Hendon, Hoops Nerd