Take a look at these box scores: Carmelo Anthony only scored 20, AI only 23, Nene chipped in twelve and looked better than in his first two games, but those were the only three Nuggets who scored in double figures. And the reason why the Nuggets couldn’t get it started on the offensive end is they didn’t want to share the ball. Denver totaled only 18 assists in this game and played far too much individual basketball. Standing around, watching Carmelo, and gazing at AI is not going to get it done, and some of the onus lands squarely on the Nuggets superstars for not getting the other guys involved too.
It also didn’t help that the Nuggets shot the ball poorly. 36% from the field and 22% from downtown is just not going to get it done against many teams in today’s NBA. Furthermore, a combined 16-49 from AI and ‘Melo spells certain doom for the Nuggets on any given night.
However, a couple of Nuggets do continue to impress me despite this horrendous looking mess of a basketball game. Kenyon Martin played fantastic and gave the Nuggets nine points, seven rebounds, four blocks, and a steal in a total playing time of 22 minutes. K-Mart showed good bounce on both offense and defense, but it is still apparent that he is not quite ready for big minutes… yet, but when he is, he is going to be a tremendous help to the Denver front line. And, his front court mate, Marcus Camby, also continues to play incredible basketball. The Captain snatched 21 rebounds, scored eight points, dished five dimes, and swatted two shots, but struggled shooting like the rest of the Nuggets and finished 4-11 from the field.
And as if the loss isn’t enough bad news, Mike Wilks, the only other point guard currently healthy enough to be on the team, tweaked his hamstring in the second quarter and didn’t return. Now the Nuggets are faced with having the Answer as the only available guard on roster to run the point. Luckily, and right on time for a return to Madison Square Garden, J.R. Smith has served his three-game suspension and will be ready for the first return trip to New York since the, “Little Grapple in the Big Apple”, went down last December.
A lot of really fun things, hint-hint, are on the way before and after the Nuggets rematch with Knicks, so stay “refreshed” on The Nugg Doctor to make sure you don’t miss any of it.