They're down to 12. Yes, an even — if not dirty — dozen games remain in what at least at first will go down as a disappointing 2013-14 season for the Nuggets.

Their 105-102 victory over the Washington Wizards at the Pepsi Center on Sunday gave the Nuggets a 32-38 record and added a sliver of hope to the goal of getting back to the .500 mark before the clock hits all zeros for the final time against the Golden State Warriors on April 16.

"You play for yourself," forward Kenneth Faried conceded after getting 20 points, eight rebounds and three blocked shots in the win. "My contract, I get an extension next year, so I'm playing for myself and my family. I'm playing for my teammates. At least we can get over .500. That's the least we can do. We know we're not going to make the playoffs, but we can keep playing."

Denver Nuggets head coach Brian Shaw, left, greets Washington Wizards guard Andre Miller as he takes floor in the first quarter of an NBA basketball game
Denver Nuggets head coach Brian Shaw, left, greets Washington Wizards guard Andre Miller as he takes floor in the first quarter of an NBA basketball game on Sunday, March 23, 2014, in Denver. (David Zalubowski, The Associated Press)

Lamenting injuries can get into rationalization territory, but the Nuggets were down to nine available bodies again by the end of the game Sunday. That follows the loss of forward-center J.J. Hickson to a season-ending torn ACL suffered Friday at Dallas, and the rib contusion suffered by forward Jan Vesely in the third quarter against the Wizards.

Vesely's status for the Nuggets' game Monday at Oklahoma City was uncertain after the game Sunday.

The Nuggets beat the Wizards after trailing by 14 points (25-11) in the first quarter.

In addition to Faried's strong game, the Nuggets received 17 points — including five 3-pointers — from guard Randy Foye, who also pitched in with an energizing block of a layup by Wizards center Marcin Gortat when Denver held a five-point lead with 1:23 remaining.

Yes, a Nuggets guard made a "get that weak stuff out of here" block on a Wizards center. No, it probably wasn't the difference-maker, but it sure was important for momentum and swagger reasons. "I just went to go get it," Foye said. "He kind of had his back turned and that was my rotation. He went to go flip it and I just blocked it."

Foye said the stretch run "is our next year now. We had a lot of injuries, which we're not using as an excuse. We're just trying to go out there and play as hard as we can and trying to get a win."

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Forward Darrell Arthur's 15 points off the bench also were a shot in the arm. He was 3-for-4 on 3-pointers.

"I'm not trying to force anything," Arthur said. "I'm just letting the game come to me and taking open shots and helping."

One of the keys for Denver was cooling the Wizards' Trevor Ariza, who had 17 points at halftime — and 18 for the game. Guard Bradley Beal led them with 21. Former Denver guard Andre Miller scored two points.

Nuggets coach Brian Shaw said the goal from here "is to keep our guys playing hard and competing every night. Obviously, we'd like to get back to the .500 mark if we can. ... We talked about this being sort of an early training camp for us because we've settled on a defensive scheme, so to speak, and now is the time to start working on it and getting familiar and getting used to it, so that when we do get around to training camp again, it's something they're familiar with and we can just jump right into it."


DENVER AT OKLAHOMA CITY 

6 p.m, Altitude, 950 AM

Spotlight on Andre Roberson:

The rookie shooting guard from Colorado has been playing more of late, averaging 15 minutes over the past 10 games, and has started nine games for the Thunder this season.

Nuggets: This is the first stop on a two-game trip that concludes at San Antonio on Wednesday ... If Jan Veseley, who suffered a bruised rib against Washington Sunday, isn't able to go, the Nuggets will be down to nine available players at the opening tip ... Denver is 1-2 against the Thunder this season.The rookie shooting guard from Colorado has been playing more of late, averaging 15 minutes over the past 10 games, and has started nine games for the Thunder this season.

The rookie shooting guard from Colorado has been playing more of late, averaging 15 minutes over the past 10 games, and has started nine games for the Thunder this season.

Thunder: Oklahoma City is coming off a 119-118 overtime road victory over Toronto Friday, and Kevin Durant had another electrifying performance, with 51 points . . . The Thunder swept its three-game road trip and has won five of its last six. . . Since Russell Westbrook returned to the lineup at Miami on Feb. 20, Oklahoma City is 8-6.