The Detroit Pistons could have used Chauncey Billups - or any guard who could shoot straight.
While Billups was helping Denver win again, his old team turned in a miserable performance Sunday in a 106-80 home loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Allen Iverson, traded to the Pistons in the deal that sent Billups to the Nuggets, was 3-of-11 for nine points. Richard Hamilton was 2-for-11 and scored seven. Top backcourt reserve Rodney Stuckey missed all five of his shots and finished with four points.
``My top three guards were 5-for-27, but they've played enough basketball that they know they can't get frustrated,'' Detroit coach Michael Curry said. ``Add in Rasheed Wallace, and it is 8-for-37. You aren't going to win many games like that.''
Billups had 21 points and eight assists in the Nuggets' 114-101 home victory over Chicago. Denver closed the game on an 18-2 run and improved to 8-2 since the Nov. 3 trade.
and different things like that. We're growing as a team. This is a testament to the guys in this locker room.''
In other NBA games Sunday, it was: Boston 118, Toronto 103; Philadelphia 89, Golden State 81; and the Los Angeles Lakers 118, Sacramento 108.
In Denver, Martin scored a season-high 26 points for the Nuggets, while Carmelo Anthony had 21 points, 13 rebounds and a season-high eight assists. Nene also scored 21 points in Denver's fifth straight home victory.
Ben Gordon scored 28 points for the Bulls, hitting 5-of-7 3-pointers, and was 9-for-9 on free throws. Drew Gooden finished with 21 points as the Bulls lost for the ninth time in 10 visits to the Mile High City.
In Auburn Hills, Mich., the Pistons lost their third in four games and fell to 4-5 since Iverson joined them. Tayshaun Prince led the Pistons with 20 points, but Jason Maxiell was the only other player to reach double figures with 12.
``I stunk up the gym tonight,'' Iverson said. ``I couldn't do anything right on the offensive end. It was one of the nights you wish you never have, but they happen.
``It will be tough to sleep tonight.''
While Detroit's All-Stars struggled, the best guard in the arena was Randy Foye, who had 23 points and a career-high 14 assists in Minnesota's first road victory of the season.
talking to him for the last two days, telling him that he needed to be more aggressive.''
Ryan Gomes scored 20 points, Al Jefferson had 19 and reserve Craig Smith 16 for the Wolves.
Lakers 118, Kings 108
At Los Angeles, Kobe Bryant scored 24 points, Andrew Bynum had 15 points and 10 rebounds, and the Lakers improved the NBA's best record to 11-1.
All five Lakers starters reached double figures by the third quarter, and eight players finished with 10 or more points as the defending Western Conference champions won for the fourth straight time since losing to Detroit at home.
John Salmons led Sacramento with 24 points and reserve Bobby Brown added 21. Kevin Martin was sidelined for the eighth consecutive game with a sprained left ankle and Mikki Moore missed his fourth straight because of a sprained right ankle.
Celtics 118, Raptors 103
At Toronto, Ray Allen scored 21 points and Boston led from the start in winning its fifth straight.
Kevin Garnett, Rajon Rondo and Tony Allen each scored 15 points for the Celtics, who have won 11 of 12 since a Nov. 1 loss to Indiana.
Kendrick Perkins had 12 points and Paul Pierce and Eddie House each scored 11 in helping Boston score a season high. Its previous best was 110 points in a Nov. 18 victory over New York.
hony Parker had 14 apiece for the Raptors, who are 2-4 at home.
76ers 89, Warriors 81
At Philadelphia, Elton Brand had 23 points and 12 rebounds, Andre Iguodala added 15 points and Philadelphia moved above .500 for the first time this season.
Thaddeus Young contributed 12 points and Samuel Dalembert had 16 rebounds for the Sixers, who improved to 7-6 and snapped a five-game losing streak to the Warriors.
Kelenna Azubuike scored 16 while C.J. Watson and Stephen Jackson had 12 apiece for Golden State, which dropped its second in a row. The high-flying Warriors were held well below their NBA-leading 105.4 scoring average coming in.

Top NBA Public Bets

NBA Top Stories

Thumbnail Knicks vs. Jazz Prediction Listed as a double-digit favorite, are the Jazz laying too many points to the Knicks tonight at 10:30PM ET?
Thumbnail Bucks vs. Kings Prediction Is the over the best play on the board tonight when the Kings host the Bucks at 10:30PM ET?
Thumbnail Cavs vs. Nuggets Prediction Are the Cavs a great play as a road favorite tonight in Denver or will the Nuggets pull off the small upset at 9:00PM ET?
Thumbnail 76ers vs. Thunder Prediction Will the under cash for bettors when the Thunder host the 76ers as double-digit favorites tonight at 8:00PM ET?
Thumbnail Hawks vs. Wizards Prediction Will tonight's Hawks and Wizards matchup at 8:00PM ET be high-scoring for bettors?

NBA Team Pages