Wednesday, December 6, 2006
Hawks Soar on Nuggets
(Boulder-CO) Denver was looking for a way to squander this one anyway that they could. The Nuggets missed 17 free throws, gave up a 14 point lead in the fourth quarter by allowing the Hawks 37 points to close it out, and missed 11 of 15 three point attempts in a real stinker tonight in Pepsi Center. Atlanta’s Shelden Willlims made the final two free throws to seal the deal, 98-96, with five seconds remaining in the game and the Nuggets couldn’t answer back. I had a feeling that this one was a figurative coin-toss if the Nuggets didn’t score above a hundred and ten and my “spidey sense” was certainly tingling for a reason.
‘Melo was the Nuggets high-scorer with 24 points, (a season low), and seven assists despite fighting foul trouble in the second half. He got whistled for two quick offensive fouls, and a defensive foul going for a steal in the third quarter and spent most of the quarter on the bench. He returned to the game in the fourth, but couldn’t get his hands on the ball with five seconds left for a potential game winner. His greatest help tonight was from Marcus Camby who actually had quite a nice game. Camby finished with eleven points, 15 rebounds, eight assists, and two blocked shots.
Off the bench, the Nuggets were led by Yakhouba Diawara and Earl Boykins. The Yak scored eleven points and nabbed two rebounds in 21 minutes of play and Boykins pitched in ten points, four rebounds, and seven assists. But it just wasn’t enough after the Nuggets flat-lined on defense in the fourth quarter.
37 TARN FLAN points is what the Nuggets allowed the Hawks to score in the fourth to rip victory from their clutches! Honestly, what could potentially happen if the Suns, God forbid, got hot for twelve minutes? Fifty or do I dare estimate sixty points being scored when the Nuggets check out defensively like they did tonight? I just don’t understand it. I just wanted to call timeout and be teleported into the huddle for a twenty second meeting. My message would have been simple and direct. I would have said, “Stop gambling for steals, act like you know how to play defense, try to stay in front of your man and we’ll win!” But hey, what do I know?
Denver has tomorrow night off, but will be right back in action against the defending, and struggling, NBA Champion Miami Heat on Friday night. It will be interesting as to what kind of reports will be made from practice tomorrow. I can imagine Coach Karl will be fuming.