Ever since the Nuggets lost to the L.A. Clippers last Saturday, coach George Karl has found some bliss. This week, Karl was awarded a new three-year contract, had some good practices with his new-look team, got to take in a Rockies spring training game, and capped things off with a 116-97 rout of the Phoenix Suns (Associated Press). The Nuggets hadn’t won in Phoenix in 12 tries, and Karl hadn’t won there since 1997, when he was the coach of the Seattle SuperSonics (Denver Post). The Nuggets offense was spread across the lineup, from Nene’s game-high 22 points to Ty Lawson’s 20 and Wilson Chandler’s 16 (NBA.com).
“This is the most complete game we’ve played,” Lawson told the Post. The game was “dropped by TNT on Thursday night for lack of star power,” according to the Post, but that’s just fine with the Nuggets. They’re now 6-2 since they traded their biggest star and firmly in the fifth spot in the Western Conference playoff race.