Denver lost for the sixth time in nine tries with Sunday's 116-108 setback to Memphis in the opener of the trek. Carmelo Anthony, the subject of recent trade rumors, scored 28 points, while Nene, Ty Lawson and J.R. Smith each contributed 14 points in a losing cause.
"They got all the loose balls, steals, offensive rebounds, you name it," Nuggets guard Chauncey Billups said of the Grizzlies.
Billups had 13 points and seven assists, and Kenyon Martin contributed 12 points for the Nuggets, who are 9-17 away from the Rocky Mountains as opposed to their 22-7 mark as the host. Denver shot 55 percent from the field, but was outrebounded by a 41-29 margin. It will also visit Milwaukee on the trek.
The Nuggets are tied with Utah at four games behind Oklahoma City for the Northwest Division lead. They have allowed 100-plus points in each of the previous 18 road games, going 6-12 in that span.
Houston will resume a four-game homestand and has dropped the first two tests on the residency, including Saturday's 106-102 setback to the Southwest Division-rival Dallas Mavericks.
Kyle Lowry scored 26 points, Kevin Martin netted 17 and Shane Battier finished with 14 points for the Rockets, who have lost five of eight games overall and are 14-12 in Space City this season. The Rockets were outscored, 34-19, in the second quarter and trailed by as many as 23 points.
"The second quarter was a killer," Rockets head coach Rick Adelman said. "We had two days to prepare for these guys but it didn't carry over."
The Rockets will wrap up the homestand versus Philadelphia on Wednesday. Lowry has reached double-figures in scoring in each of the last three games, averaging 17 points in that stretch.
Denver has won two of three meetings with Houston this season and recently dropped a 108-103 decision on Feb. 7 from the Pepsi Center. Anthony had 50 points in that one, while Martin led the Rockets with 37.
The Nuggets are 4-2 in the last six matchups with Houston.
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