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  • Nuggets center JaVale McGee will miss his third straight game with a sore left shin. In his absence Timofey Mozgov has played more minutes and has made the most of them. He has averaged 8.5 points and 3.5 rebounds in the last two games while playing an average of 14 minutes. “Timofey works so hard, he’s so professional about it,” Nuggets coach George Karl said. “I know he can play in this league, I know he’s probably a 20-minute NBA player, I just don’t have 20 minutes to give him. I feel bad for him.”
  • Hornets guard Eric Gordon is playing under a minutes restriction as he continues to work his way back from a knee injury that made him miss the first 29 games of the season. Gordon is leading New Orleans at 17.4 points a game. “He’s not playing 40 minutes,” Hornets coach Monty Williams said. “He’s under a minute restriction until I hear otherwise from the doctors.”
  • The Nuggets get their first look at rookie Anthony Davis. Davis, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft, missed the first game between the teams with a stress reaction in his left ankle. He is averaging 13 points and 7.6 rebounds this season but Karl thinks he is poised to do more. “We really like him. Davis could blow up in the second half of the season,” Karl said. “He can get more confident and start having big games.”

– Michael Kelly

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