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Nuggets Vs. Raptors: Is The Third Time A Charm For George Karl? Will Carmelo Anthony Play?

The "George Karl Career Win 1000" road show will take itself across the border as the Toronto Raptors host the Denver Nuggets on Friday night.

Karl, who has been stuck on 999 career wins since Sunday, hopes that the Air Canada Center will act as the setting for another coaching milestone. It was against the Raptors (8-14) that Karl notched career win 900.

Getting the marquee win might be made more difficult without the service of leading scorer Carmelo Anthony, who was a late scratch in the Nuggets (13-8) loss to the Boston Celtics on Wednesday.

"I'm somewhat surprised by it," Karl said of Melo sitting last game. "I kind of knew there was a chance he wouldn't go (at) about 15 minutes before the game."

If Melo can't play, the Nuggets need Chauncey Billups to slip out of his current slump. Over the past four games Mr. Big Shot has shot just 31.6 percent from the field, and was just 2 of 10 with a season low five points against Boston.

Through Melo and Billups' recent struggles, some role players have really stepped up for Denver. Against Boston, Ty Lawson exploded for 24 points, seven assists and three steals. In recent games the Nuggets have also seen season-high type games out of Arron Afflalo and Nene.

The Raptors are led by Andrea Bargnani's 21.2 points per game. Reggie Evans leads the team with 12.1 rebounds per game and Jose Calderon is their leading assist man, averaging 6.4 dimes per contest.

The game will also feature former Missouri Tiger and Denver Nugget Linas Kleiza matching up against the team he spent his first four NBA seasons seasons suiting up for. On the season Kleiza is averaging 9.6 ppg and 3.9 rpg.

The game tips at 5:00 p.m. MT. Check local listings for TV coverage, as Altitude2 is the listed carrier.