January 28 2010, 8:30 AM
After producing plenty of off-the-court drama over the last few days, Denver Nuggets guard J.R. Smith returned to form on the court last night. He scored 22 points to power the team---again without Carmelo Anthony---to its eighth straight win, defeating the Houston Rockets 97-92 (via ESPN). The talented backup shooting guard has driven fans and reporters crazy lately with his uneven performances and sulky behavior, but Smith has promised to correct his poor "body language," writes Bleacher Report. Prior to yesterday's game, he cut a last-minute check to his former Houston-area attorney to avoid a lawsuit over debts, reports USA Today. The distraction might have fueled his game against the Rockets. After hitting back-to-back, three-point baskets late in the game, Smith, perhaps releasing some recently pent-up angst, was "turning and walking the other way before each splashed the net, screaming in delight," writes the Houston Chronicle. The Nuggets have looked good at the bowling alley, too. The Denver Post's Joanne Davidson writes that the whole roster showed up for the team's Bowling Ball, a charity event held at Lucky Strike in the Denver Pavilions, which raised $60,000.