Denver (19-17) at Utah (12-26)

ALAN FERGUSON (STATS Writer) Sunday, Jan 12, 2014 Tipoff: 9:00 pm EST Mon Jan 13, 2014

Since returning to the starting lineup, Randy Foye has become one of the leading drivers of the Denver Nuggets' growing win streak.

The point guard's past three games have been his best of the season and he'll try for another high-scoring performance Monday night against his former team, the Utah Jazz.

Foye is averaging a team-best 18.4 points during Denver's five-game win streak to help the Nuggets (19-17) post 119.6 per contest - 17.0 better than their season average. He was averaging 8.9 points in his first 31 games with the team and was held out of the starting lineup for three games from Dec. 27-30 after scoring one point and missing all 12 shots in the previous two contests.

Foye has been particularly hot in Denver's past three wins, averaging 21.7 points while hitting 16 of 29 shots from 3-point range (55.2 percent).

He tied for the team scoring lead with 18 points in 30 minutes in Saturday's 120-94 rout of Orlando. Evan Fournier had 18 off the bench and was among seven Denver players in double figures.

"We're treating each game like it's the playoffs. Every guy is coming in getting extra shots up and watching more film," guard Nate Robinson told the team's website. "That's going to help us get through the season. Guys are playing better and we are having fun sharing the ball.

"When basketball is fun, you will be surprised at what you can do. It's just magical."

Foye's former club was without its leading scorer, Gordon Hayward, for Friday's 113-102 loss to Cleveland, which snapped a four-game home win streak for the Jazz (12-26).

Hayward sat out with a muscle strain in his left hip flexor after averaging 27.0 points in the previous three games - including a career-high 37 in a win over Oklahoma City on Tuesday. Hayward, who averages 17.1 points, will be a game-time decision against Denver.

Alec Burks had 16 points and five rebounds while starting in Hayward's place Friday, and Richard Jefferson had a team-best 18.

"We need all of our pieces, and Gordon is a big part of what we're doing," coach Tyrone Corbin said.

Hayward had 30 points and a career-best 13 rebounds in a 103-93 road win over Denver on Dec. 13. He scored a team-best 22 when the Nuggets visited Salt Lake City on Nov. 11, but Utah suffered a 100-81 loss.

Andre Miller scored nine of his season-high 15 points in the fourth quarter while helping the Nuggets pull away, but is currently excused from the team after yelling at coach Brian Shaw during a 114-102 loss to Philadelphia on Jan. 1.

Denver was also without Wilson Chandler (groin) and Anthony Randolph (ankle) on Saturday, and Darrell Arthur left in the third quarter with a strained left groin. JaVale McGee (fractured left leg) and Danilo Gallinari (knee) are dealing with more long-term ailments.

Foye averaged 10.8 points and a career-low 2.0 assists in his lone season with Utah in 2012-13. He was acquired by Denver in a three-team deal July 10 and has scored a combined seven points on 3-of-13 shooting in this season's two meetings with his former club.

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