The 33-year-old forward accumulated 16 points, three rebounds, two blocks and a steal in 19 minutes before leaving the game.
The Boston Celtics maintained their winning form with their fifth straight victory, thrashing the Chicago Bulls 133-77, while LeBron James finished with 20 points, nine assists and eight rebounds in the Los Angeles Lakers' 111-88 win against the Memphis Grizzlies.
Denver came in the with the best record in the Western Conference, but shot 39 percent from the field and 23 percent from 3-point range.
The Nuggets feature athletic forward Juancho Hernangomez, who is a nightmare for the Hawks to guard. The other problem for Atlanta is Paul Millsap, who spent four productive seasons with the Hawks. However, Millsap hurt his right foot in the second half on Friday and did not return. That means that somebody else gets and opportunity off the bench.
With AP Photos.John Collins scored a career-high 30 points and reserves Vince Carter and DeAndre' Bembry fueled a third-quarter rally that helped the Atlanta Hawks beat the Denver Nuggets 106-98. And that means somebody else moves into the lineup. "If Paul's not able to go to tomorrow (Saturday), that's an opportunity for somebody else". We can't worry about it and make excuses.
This the fourth back-to-back for the Nuggets. "We've got to find ways and solutions". They won both ends of the previous three, most recently November 23-24 against the Magic and Thunder.
Last year, Millsap missed 44 straight games last season after undergoing surgery to fix a torn ligament in his left wrist.
The Hornets bench outscored the Nuggets 59-40, as they got 16 points from Mail Monk and 11 from Frank Kaminsky. "This was one of our worst performances of the year". High-scoring guards Will Barton (right hip/core) and Gary Harris (right hip) also were out.