Nuggets-76ers Preview

Associated Press  |  Last updated January 18, 2012
The Denver Nuggets handed their most recent opponent its first home loss of the season. They might have a hard time doing the same against the surging Philadelphia 76ers. Off to their best home start in nine seasons, the 76ers look to remain undefeated at the Wells Fargo Center when they host the Nuggets on Wednesday night. Sitting comfortably atop the Atlantic Division for the moment, Philadelphia (10-3) has opened with six straight home victories for the first time since a 10-0 start in 2002-03. Philadelphia has averaged 102.5 points at home while holding its opponents to 79.5 per game. One of four unbeaten teams at home, Philadelphia is also tied with Orlando for the second-best record overall in the Eastern Conference, 1 1/2 games behind Chicago. "I'm down to win all of them,'' said third-year guard Jrue Holiday, averaging a career-high 15.0 points. "All the home games, away games. We can go undefeated from here on out. I'm cool with that.'' Holiday scored 24 points, Andre Iguodala had 21 with seven rebounds and Louis Williams added 17 off the bench as the 76ers went 11 of 23 from 3-point range Monday while winning their third in a row, 94-82 at home over Milwaukee. "They're a very underrated team,'' Bucks center Andrew Bogut said. "They move the ball well, they're very well coached." Despite coming off the bench every game this season, Williams is averaging a team-leading 16.2 points - 20.0 in his last three games. Iguodala, (14.8 ppg, 6.3 rpg), chosen as part of the 20-player men's Olympic basketball pool, has totaled 44 points in his last two contests. "I think (Iguodala's) got a great chance (to make the Olympic team) if he stays healthy,'' coach Doug Collins said. "He's gotten off to a great start for us this year.'' Iguodala had 24 points in Philadelphia's 110-99 home victory over the Nuggets last Jan. 30 as the 76ers completed a season series sweep. Holiday scored 22 in a 95-89 win at Denver on Dec. 26, 2010. Philadelphia has defeated the Nuggets (9-5) three straight times in all. However, Denver has now won three of four overall after handing Milwaukee its first home loss with a 105-95 victory Tuesday. Corey Brewer scored a season-high 22 points while Danilo Gallinari and Nene each added 14 in Denver's successful opener to a five-game trip. The Nuggets average 104.1 points per game, second in the NBA only to Miami's 107.2. They've been held below 100 points just three times. Defensively, Denver is coming off one of its best efforts after forcing 19 turnovers and holding the Bucks to their fewest points in five home games. "Our mental approach to the game was much, much better to start the game, especially on the defensive end,'' said guard Aaron Afflalo, who blocked two shots. The Nuggets have allowed an average of 104.3 points in their last three games versus Philadelphia.
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