Red-hot Hawks welcome Nuggets to Atlanta

( - The Atlanta Hawks have won five straight and will put that streak on the line Sunday afternoon when the Denver Nuggets make a stop at Philips Arena.

The Hawks haven't lost since a home setback to the Toronto Raptors on Nov. 26. They've won seven of their last eight and moved within two games of those Raptors for Eastern Conference supremacy.

Atlanta started the trek with a 10-point victory in South Beach over the Miami Heat. Then, on Friday night, the Hawks completed a 2-0 trip with a 98-75 drubbing of the Brooklyn Nets at the Barclays Center.

DeMarre Carroll scored 18 points on 7-of-10 shooting to lead Atlanta. Carroll's 14 second-quarter points keyed a dominant period for the Hawks that saw them outscore the Nets 36-13.

Paul Millsap contributed 17 points and nine rebounds in the winning effort, Atlanta's third straight on the road, and Jeff Teague and Dennis Schroder scored 14 and 13 points, respectively.

"Winning on the road isn't easy and our defense put us in a position to do that," Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer said.

The Hawks, who have scored over 90 points in every game this season, have won three in a row at home.

The Nuggets started a three-game eastern road swing with an ugly, 119-89 loss versus the Washington Wizards. Denver has dropped two straight and three of its last five.

Wilson Chandler scored 20 points for the Nuggets against the Wizards. Ty Lawson gave 14 points and 10 assists in defeat. No other Denver player scored in double figures.

"We got killed on the boards, we got more than doubled up on the assists," said Denver head coach Brian Shaw. "We turned the ball over 21 times and only shot 37 percent from the field. Every kind of way they could beat us, they beat us tonight."

Denver didn't get it done defensively either, allowing the Wizards to shoot a tick under 53 percent from the field. The Nuggets rank 27th in opponents' scoring.

The Nuggets will close their trip Monday night against the Raptors, then it's five of their next six in the Mile High City.

The Nuggets have won six of the last eight meetings between the two clubs, but are just 1-5 in their last six in Atlanta.