2014 NBA schedule: Rockets take 5-game winning streak to Minnesota

Andrew Richardson-USA TODAY Spor

The Rockets ride a five-game winning streak into Minnesota to take on the ailing Timberwolves. Elsewhere, the Pistons face the Spurs in their first game since Maurice Cheeks was fired, and the 76ers will try to avoid another West Coast embarrassment.

Six games are on the NBA slate Monday night, with arguably the hottest team in the league looking to win a sixth game in a row. Let's take a look at the action.

Main course: Houston Rockets at Minnesota Timberwolves

8 p.m. ET, NBA TV

The Rockets are one of two teams riding five-game winning streaks, the other being one of their Texas counterparts, the Dallas Mavericks. Houston has beaten both other Texas teams during its streak, and is coming off a surprisingly tight win over the Milwaukee Bucks.

The Rockets' streak has been buoyed by Dwight Howard, who's averaging 26.2 points and 10.8 rebounds in the five wins. Howard's backup, Omer Asik, returned from a lengthy absence in the win over the Bucks and grabbed five rebounds in 11 minutes.

Things aren't so peachy for the Wolves, who have lost three straight games. Injuries are again proving to be an issue, and both Nikola Pekovic (ankle) and Kevin Martin (thumb) will be out Monday. Kevin Love has missed two of the last three games with various ailments, but the All-Star big man hopes to play against Houston.

Appetizer: San Antonio Spurs at Detroit Pistons

7:30 p.m. ET

Normally, I would recommend watching the Indiana Pacers play the Denver Nuggets. But times aren't normal in Detroit. The Pistons will take on the Spurs in the first game after head coach Maurice Cheeks became the first NBA headmaster fired this season.

Detroit enters the game Monday on a two-game winning streak, and it will be interesting to see how the team responds on the court in the wake of Cheeks' firing. Brandon Jennings has been brilliant in the last two wins, averaging 30.5 points, 10.5 assists and 5.5 rebounds. Most importantly, Jennings has been efficient with his shooting.

San Antonio remains banged up, with Tiago Splitter (calf) again joining Kawhi Leonard (hand) and Manu Ginobili (hamstring) on the sidelines. Marco Belinelli (back spasms) will likely return to the lineup after missing the win over the Charlotte Bobcats on Saturday, and Tony Parker (back spasms) should also be good to go despite being limited against the Bobcats.

Dessert: Philadelphia 76ers at Golden State Warriors

10:30 p.m. ET

Yes, the Sixers are absolutely terrible. Just look at what happened to them against the Los Angeles Clippers on Sunday night. Down by 31 points after one quarter and a 45-point defeat.

But thanks to their styles of play, Sixers-Warriors could be kind of fun. And at the very least, perhaps Golden State can do to Philly what Los Angeles did and things get can out of hand in a silly way.

Other games (all times ET)

Denver Nuggets at Indiana Pacers, 7 p.m.

New Orleans Pelicans at Toronto Raptors, 7 p.m.

Boston Celtics at Milwaukee Bucks, 8 p.m.

More from SB Nation NBA:

The Hook: Why the NBA will raise the draft age minimum

NBA newsletter: It's over for Mo Cheeks in Motown

Ziller: Detroit's scapegoat | Joe Dumars is a lame duck GM

Flannery's Sunday Shootaround: Putting the Kings back together

NBA power rankings: Thunder, Pacers remain on top

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