Nikola Jokic didn’t play because of a hip injury. Will Barton didn’t play because of an ankle injury. Emmanuel Mudiay was limited (although he went over his minutes ‘limit’) with a lingering back issue. Danilo Gallinari played 30 minutes but will undergo an MRI on Thursday after suffering a groin injury. Kenneth Faried played 28 minutes, but he is day-to-day with a bad hamstring. And Jameer Nelson wasn’t hurt, but he bruised him team’s chances at a win on Wednesday night after being ejected in the first quarter of a 119-99 loss to the Grizzlies.

Yes, the Nuggets are hurting, and are now losers of two straight after rattling off seven wins in nine games for what was undoubtedly their best stretch of the season. Marc Gasol scored a game-high 24 points and no Nuggets cracked the 15-point threshold in the loss. Head coach Michael Malone emptied his bench, giving minutes to Johnny O’Bryant, Malik Beasley and Mike Miller in the loss. Jamal Murray ran the point in place of the ejected Nelson, producing just nine points and two assists.

Kenneth Faried logged a double-double with 11 points and 11 rebounds. Denver shot just 40 percent from the floor and had 17 turnovers in the loss.

Denver is now back on the outside looking in on the playoffs as the Trail Blazers have leapfrogged them for the No. 8 seed after the Nuggets lost back-to-back games Tuesday and Wednesday night. There is little rest for the battered bunch who play again Friday night in Denver against Milwaukee before heading out for another back-to-back requiring travel; they are in San Antonio on Saturday night.