Golden Nuggets: Karl's squad making a run at Warriors, Grizzlies

Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

We're reaching the end of January where the Nuggets have gone 9-3 this month (now 10-15 on the road) with three games left to play. Denver has maneuvered its way into a second half run for home court in the first round of the playoffs. Can they get there?

Last night's win in Houston over the Rockets (105-95) should not have been a surprising one as James Harden and his teammates have been on a skid, but also because the Nuggets are 2-0 now in Houston. Denver got a big early season win in Houston back on Nov. 7th (93-87).

George Karl has stated that he wants his team to get 10 wins in January. Well, the Nuggets are one win away from that goal and Andre Iguodala and his teammates could grab as many as 12 wins before the month is up.

Upcoming three game homestand to close out January:

Sat. January 26th vs. Sacramento Kings (7 p.m. MT)

Mon. January 28th vs. Indiana Pacers (7 p.m. MT)

Wed. January 30th vs. Houston Rockets (7 p.m. MT)

Dare I say that the Nuggets should win all those games? Well, they should go 3-0 to close out the month!

The Kings come to town on the second of a back-to-back where they'll be facing the Thunder in Sacramento the night before. The Nuggets have an amazing rest period from Thursday until Saturday. That should be a win.

The Pacers will be rested as they come to Denver from Utah, but they play the Jazz on Saturday so they'll have Sunday off before Monday's match up against Ty Lawson and Company. The Pacers are a good team (26-17), but one Denver has already defeated. A win at home should be expected by Denver, but they'll have to really earn it.

Houston will make its first trip to Denver for that Jan. 30th game - they will have a full day of rest before that game. The Nuggets are 2-0 against the Rockets this season and should get a third win. The Rockets do not have the big men to hurt the Nuggets inside and the perimeter players for the Rockets all face tough match ups against the Nuggets (Jeremy Lin vs. Lawson, Harden vs. Iggy, and Chandler Parsons vs. Danilo Gallinari) starters and Denver can unleash even more wing defenders off the bench in Wilson Chandler and Corey Brewer.

The reason I think Denver can go 3-0 to finish the month? This team is starting to find its groove. With a healthy roster and a key bench piece back in Chandler, the Nuggets are getting that on-court familiarity that makes for a good team.

The Nuggets are four losses behind the Grizzlies (27-14) and just three losses behind the Warriors (26-15). It would appear that those two teams, plus the Nuggets and Jazz will battle it out for the fourth seed. The Thunder, Spurs, and Clippers have a comfortable lead on the top three seeds, for now, but a little slide could lump them right back into the bunching up middle of the playoff seeding pack.

Here's hoping the Nuggets can finish the month with three big wins at the Pepsi Center.


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