Suddenly, the fourth quarter has become the Nuggets' quarter.
Whether they slosh through the first three quarters or play well from the start and find themselves in a tight contest, the fourth has been the separation quarter for this team, trying to hit its stride this month.
The Nuggets outscored Golden State 37-18 in the fourth quarter Sunday night to make a tough game look like an easy 116-105 win at the Pepsi Center. It was the Nuggets' season-high fifth straight win.
So what's different in the fourth quarter?
"Urgency and desperation and professional pride," Nuggets coach George Karl said.
The Nuggets turn up the defense and shift the offense into overdrive in the final period. During this five-game winning streak, they've outscored their opponents 151-102 in the fourth, an average of 30.2 points to 20.4.
"I feel like we're most focused in the fourth quarter for some reason," center JaVale McGee said. "I don't know why. I feel like we take the first half for granted, but we really go hard in the fourth quarter."
Sunday, the Nuggets shot 14-of-20 in the fourth, made 7-of-9 free throws and outrebounded Golden State — one of the NBA's better road teams — 11-7 in the final frame. Danilo Gallinari scored eight of his team-high 21 points in the fourth, but it was the Nuggets' bench that did the most damage.
Read more: Nuggets defeat Warriors to win their fifth consecutive game - The Denver Post http://www.denverpost.com/nuggets/ci_22367844/nuggets-defeat-warriors-win-their-fifth-consecutive-game#ixzz2HyV3bq8T
Nuggets defeat Warriors to win their fifth consecutive game
Denver Post | Jan 14