Interesting fact about the Nuggets starters in this game: all of their colleges/countries of origin have blue as a major color. Lawson (UNC), Afflalo (UCLA), Brewer (Florida), and Faried (Morehead State) all went to college with blue as the major color of the school. And Mozgov is from Russia, which has blue in its flag. So that's kind of neat. Yeah, I'm a dork who finds these things fascinating.
Also, Dalembert went to Seton Hall, which also features blue. In fact, Lowry (Villanova), Parsons (Florida), and Scola (Argentina) are also from blueish areas. And Western Carolina, K-Mart's alma mater has purple and gold. Purple is close enough right? So we'll call this the blue game.
I don't know how game 37 can be a must-win, but tonight is just that for both teams. The Nuggets currently hold the 8th seed in the Western Conference, only two games behind the Rockets. It's imperative that the Rockets take this game, especially with it being at home.
Matchups after the jump. Tip is at 7pm CST.
PG: Kyle Lowry vs. Ty Lawson:
Lawson has been very similar to Lowry this season. It's been a coming-out party for him, but because the league doesn't focus on Denver, casual NBA fans don't know much about him.
He returned from an ankle injury Wednesday and just dropped 18/9/5 on the Blazers.
The Denver offense runs through Lawson, so it's important for the Rockets to contain the speedy point guard.
SG: Kevin Martin vs. Arron Afflalo:
K-Mart has disappeared again.
And I really like Afflalo, even if his first name is spelled weirdly.
SF: Chandler Parsons vs. Corey Brewer:
Gator vs. Gator. Here's are two of their best moments at Florida.
Sick move by Corey Brewer (via bigmike2006)
Florida's Chandler Parsons hits miracle buzzer-beater (via e3nine)
PF: Luis Scola vs. Kenneth Faried/Al Harrington:
Faried starts, but Harrington will get a lot of time on the court.
I just love this quote from Scola, so it's what I'm going with here. Link.
"We cannot just in the third quarter decide that we're not going to win the game and just let them do whatever they want," said forward Luis Scola, who scored a team-high 18 points. "We've got to fight our way to the end and if we lose, we lose."
C: Samuel Dalembert vs. Timofey Mozgov:
Dalembert's been awfully quiet. We haven't had one of those great games from him in awhile.
I predict that he does really well tonight.
Nuggets: Al Harrington, Andre Miller, Kosta Koufos, Jordan Hamilton, Rudy Fernandez
Rockets: Goran Dragic, Chase Budinger, Patrick Patterson, Courtney Lee, Xiane
Nuggets: Rudy Fernandez probable, Nene doubtful, Danilo Gallinari out
Rockets: Jordan Hill out
Prediction: Rockets pull it out 105-97
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Nuggets vs Rockets coverage