Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Where is the Defense, Denver?

(Boulder-CO) Obviously, no one delivered the memo to the Denver Nuggets that to win a game in the NBA a defensive commitment is needed. I usually never stop watching a game, but this was so absolutely atrocious that I had to switch the channel. Tonight’s game reminded me of the last pick-up game at the rec center. You know, the one where no one plays any defense and everyone is pulling circus shots trying to get oohs and awws out of each other. It was that bad, seriously!

Denver was sluggish out of the gate and once again let a team get nearly forty off the bat (39 to be exact) in the first quarter. It was blatantly apparent that they had no aspirations of playing defense and were going to try and out score the Wizards in an attempt to find victory. Tough sell because, as they proved tonight, the Wizards have the offensive capabilities of scoring with nearly anyone in the league.

The three-headed monster in Washington, Gilbert “Agent Zero” Arenas, Caron Butler, and Antawn Jamison, combined for 79 points and got help from Brendan Haywood, DeShawn Stevenson, and Jarvis Hays who all scored in double digits. Contrary to Washington’s six players in double figures; the Nuggets only had four players break the ten-point mark.

Carmelo Anthony had a game-high 37 points, but in my opinion needs to pass the rock a little more to get other Nuggets involved. Marcus Camby evidently agrees with me and made this statement after the game, “That's our coach's job. If he's (Carmelo) taking the majority of the shots, who else is there to shoot the ball? There's no shots to go around, so Coach has to do a great job of figuring that out. That's a tough situation that he's in.” Camby adds, “ Carmelo is a great scorer. We all know he's our go-to guy, but we have to spread the wealth around to keep guys happy.” Well said, Marcus and Amen.

Thankfully, I didn’t make a prediction about this game. I hate to pick against the Nuggets, but some how knew that tonight was going to be a rough one. The Nuggets were out shot from the field 50-40% and from beyond the arc by a grotesque 32-10%. They were also out rebounded, out assisted, out stolen, out blocked, turned the ball over more, and shot a worse percentage from the free-throw line. There was not a bright spot to be mentioned in tonight’s loss. I just do not know how else to say it. The box score is a total abomination if you are a Nuggets fan.

Oh, and by the way, the Nuggets lost 120-91. A day of rest and right back at it is the only good news. The Boston Celtics on Friday and a prescribed win is all the doctor has ordered. The only bright spot of tonight’s game was James Earl Jones reciting the National Anthem in a fashion that I thought was absolutely amazing. I love that guy!


Pradamaster said...

Gotta say, you guys looked pretty tired last night. No way the Wizards should have held the Nuggets to 91 points.

And yeah, you should be upset about that defensive effort. Hate to say it.

Gotta ask, what was up with J.R. Smith? Was it really that important to guard Arenas that Diawara played more than Smith in this one? That was something I didn't really get.

-Pradamaster, Bullets Forever

Nugg Doctor said...

Well Pradamaster, it's like this... Borat would say, "J.R. Smith on defense not so good." Smith also has the tendency to struggle as a whole if his jumper isn't dropping. I really like the Yak, but sometimes we need Smith to suck it up and play some friggin' D!

Thanks for reading,

The Nugg Doctor

Ted said...

The Nugz looked horrible on defense all nightt. Where is the consistency, the fire, the will to win?

Carmelo was awesome again offensively and i must say that i disagree with Camby's comments, as well as your agreeing with him.
Yes, Melo does take the majority of the shots (16-27 fg, not bad at all) - which he should but he also passes the ball...did you see some of those passes to Najera and Evans that they didnt finish/or went to the line...In other words, he makes a lot of effective passes that dont show up in the box score. Maybe the Cam Man should focus on cutting to the basket when the balls in Melo's hand instead of hanging at the top of the key like he's G'Renas. The Nuz get up more shots per game than any other team in the league - so i dont have a problem with Melo taking 25% of those shots as long as 90% of his shots are good shots...Lastly, making millions of dollars should keep you happy - If most of these guys focus on doing what they do best, provide Reggie Evans type energy at all times - and give your best on a nightly basis- that should keep you happy.

Teddy Ball Game straight from C-Town, the step home of Lebron

Nugg Doctor said...

I would agree with you that the rest of the Nuggets need to start bringing energy regardless of whether or not they are having a great game (J.R. Especially!). Camby does need to expand his offensive arsenal inside because he does rely on that shot too much. When it goes, great, but when it doesn't it is very annoying to see a guy his size tossing up jumpers from that far out.

Thanks for reading,

The Nugg Doctor

organiceskimos said...

I think when the rest of the team is missing easy layups or settling for crappy jumpers instead of moving to get open, Melo should be taking that many shots. The rest of the guys need to step it up -- that's why I'm hoping we get Iverson -- it'll take some of the pressure off of Carmelo so he can concentrate on getting good shots. He feels like he has to do everything when J.R.'s shot isn't falling and the other starters are sleep-walking through the game.

Now the rumor is that the Bulls are trying to trade for Marcus (sending P.J. Brown to the Sixers and Iverson here)... I really (!) hope this isn't in the plans. Even though Marcus is getting up there in age and is injury-prone, he's the only real inside defense they have right now aside from the hustle guys. Plus, he's my favorite player, and I'd just hate to see him playing somewhere else. I hope they wait it out and wait for the stock to drop some more so they can get AI with Joe Smith and a pick or two...