Hawks vs Nuggets preview: Road trip ends in Denver

Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

The Atlanta Hawks wrap up their three-game western road trip in Denver when they take on the Nuggets who are still looking for their first win of the season.

The Atlanta Hawks wrap up their three-game road trip with a stop in Denver to take on the winless Nuggets. Atlanta dropped the first game of the trip to the Lakers 105-103 and grabbed their first road win of the season on Tuesday with a 105-100 decision over the Sacramento Kings. The Hawks are 2-2 on the season and a winning road trip would be a big shot in the arm.

However, Denver historically has not been kind to the Hawks. Atlanta has lost six straight road games in the series and are 11-28 all-time in Denver including last season's 104-88 loss.

This season's edition of the Nuggets doesn't look much like last season's team that finished with 57 wins. George Karl is out as head coach with Brian Shaw still looking for his first win as his replacement. Injuries to Wilson Chandler and Danilo Gallinari have hampered the Nuggets and left Ty Lawson to do most of the heavy lifting.

There are concerns for Atlanta and they start with the president of the Hawks hater club Nate Robinson. Atlanta has been vulnerable to offensive explosions by opposing players this season and Robinson has seemed to make a career of it. Robinson is off to somewhat of a slow start averaging 9.7 points on 32 percent shooting through three games. He averages 14.6 points per game in his career against the Hawks while shooting 51 percent which is his highest percentage against any opponent.

While Robinson will come off the bench, Lawson presents a problem for Jeff Teague from the outset. He's averaging a career best 20.3 points per game but his shooting percentage has slipped to 38 percent. Atlanta must be engaged from the outset with their perimeter defense because a slow start could prove costly in Denver's thin air.

Al Horford is off to a great start for the Hawks this season and will be charged with slowing down Denver's center combination of JaVale McGee and Timofey Mozgov. McGee is somewhat of an enigma. He's ultra talented but has hardly been a factor through three games averaging just 6.3 points and 3.7 rebounds. Mozgov is the anti-JaVale in that he doesn't possess elite athleticism but gets much more out of his talents.

The Hawks are still awaiting word on whether or not rookie point guard Dennis Schröder will face discipline from the league over a low blow that he delivered to DeMarcus Cousins while fighting around a screen on Tuesday. No news is good news in this sense for the Hawks but a fine or suspension could be levied sometime before tonight's tip off.

Game Info

Game Date/Time: Thursday, November 7, 9 p.m.

Location: Pepsi Center, Denver, Colorado

TV: SportSouth

Radio: 92.9 FM "The Game"

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