Thursday, October 25, 2007

Nuggets Edged by Strawberry, Suns

(AP Photo/Matt York)
(Boulder-CO) Denver had its chance late to walk away a winner tonight, but it was the high arching stroke of D.J. Strawberry that sealed the win for the Phoenix Suns, 116-113. Poor shooting percentages from both the free-throw line and three-point arch contributed tremendously in the loss, but worse than the defeat was seeing Chucky Atkins literally collapse after re-aggravating his groin in the middle of the fourth quarter. The injury was the worse case scenario for the Nuggets who now will likely have to start AI at point guard with the regular season set to start in less than a week.

Denver, with its starters in for the first half, jumped out to a twelve point lead at the break mainly due to attacking the basket early and often. Kenyon, Anthony, and Iverson all had really nice takes to the cup with the Nuggets in total scoring 22 points on either driving lay-ups or dunks. Shooting percentages were high at this point with 18 more points coming off of the charity stripe, but once the starters were summoned back to the bench all things statistically went down hill.

And so did the defense in the third quarter as the Nuggets allowed Phoenix to score 39 points in total including four three-pointers and only rebutted with 15 points of their own.

A once 12-point Nugget lead was suddenly erased and replaced with a 12-point advantage for Phoenix and George Karl had seen enough. It was time to see if the Nugget reserves could provide the courage to somehow win with a mountain to climb. And to their credit, they did fight valiantly to the end.
Denver managed to claw back slowly with a 9-0 run to tie the game at 113, but due to four missed free-throws by Von Wafer and J.R. missing his last three out of four attempts from the stripe the Nuggets opened the door for D.J. Strawberry to play the hero with just three seconds remaining after Marcus Banks drew a double team off of penetration and kicked it to him for the game-winning three. Denver finished the game by only shooting 16.7% from downtown and 61.8 from the free-throw line. Signed, sealed, and delivered. Nuggets lose.

Offensively, the Nuggets were paced by the dynamic duo of Allen Iverson (24 points and three assists) and Carmelo Anthony (22 points and five rebounds). Only two other Nuggets, (Bobby Jones and J.R. Smith), scored in double figures in comparison to seven for the Suns.

Up next for the Nuggets are the Portland Trailblazers in Portland tomorrow night. Hopefully a more favorable outcome is in store for the Nuggets Nation.

Go Nuggets!


EY The Scribe said...

What up Nugg Doc? I'm the biggest Nuggs fan in San Diego and we're gonna be in touch throughout the season. Just letting you know.

Atkins going down is really gonna hurt. I don't think Roberson or Carter or Wilkes or whomever else they brought in can do the job.

Let's hope the Clippers inevitable midseason buyout of Sam Cassell can bring him Denver to reuinite with Karl, and he can be the point guard we've been waiting on.

Nugg Doctor said...

Good to have you on board, EY. Keep it classy and inteligent and we should be partying all season long as the Nuggets roll!

Thanks for reading,

The Nugg Doctor

Geerten said...

What's your assessment on this game Doc? A brave showing against one of the top teams in the L? Or an early indication that the Nuggets still can't seem to finish properly?

Anyway can't wait for the Regular Season to start. I hope it's gonna be a thrilling ride!