Denver Nuggets' 15-Game Winning Streak Snapped with Loss vs. Hornets

Tim Keeney@@t_keenContributor IMarch 25, 2013

On a wild Monday night in the NBA, one gargantuan winning streak continued while another massive winning streak came to a screeching halt. 

Unfortunately for the Denver Nuggets, the Miami Heat beat the Orlando Magic, which can only mean one thing.

It was Denver's 15-game winning streak that finally came to an end at the hands of the 25-46 New Orleans Hornets, who were playing without starting point guard Greivis Vasquez.  Of course, the Nuggets were also without their floor general. Ty Lawson, who was sidelined for the third straight game with an injured heel, and his team finally felt the effects, falling, 110-86. 

Without Lawson running the show, the Nuggets simply weren't able to execute on the offensive end.

Danilo Gallinari led the way with 24 points on 5-of-12 shooting (4-of-6 from long range, 10-of-10 from the free-throw line), but the rest of the team shot an anemic 37.0 percent from the field and 10.0 percent from beyond the arc, while only two other players hit double figures (Kenneth Faried with 13 and Wilson Chandler with 11).

Things weren't much better defensively, as the Nuggets couldn't find an answer for Vasquez's replacement, Brian Roberts. 

The former Dayton star had 13 points on 5-of-10 shooting, but his playmaking ability was key in New Orleans' efficient attack, as he racked up a staggering 18 assists to go with just three turnovers. 

Ryan Anderson poured in 23 points off the bench as seven Hornets scored in double figures. As a team, they shot a scorching 48.2 percent from the field and 56.0 percent from long range in a truly dominant effort. 

Denver, now at 49-23 and tied with the Los Angeles Clippers for third place in the West, heads to San Antonio on Wednesday to try to begin a new streak against the first-place Spurs.