Saturday, December 8, 2007

Denver Out Duels Mavericks

(AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)
(Boulder-CO) The Denver Nuggets proved to me once again that they are one of the hardest teams in the league to understand. I predicted that they would lose to the Mavericks by eight after losing the night before by four to the Lakers at home. I was banking on Denver coming out sluggish on the tail end of back-to-back games against a very talented Maverick team, but instead they some how muster up the kind of effort that puts 39 points on the scoreboard in the first quarter and cruise to a, 122-109, victory. Damn, at least I was wrong and the Nuggets won. It’s the other way around that really has a way of eating at me.

The box score finally looks like we all have expected it to look since the beginning of the season with Allen Iverson continuing to play amazing basketball. The Answer finished with 35 points, 12 assists, and six steals to follow up his 51 point outburst against the Lakers the previous night. And the main difference from the loss to the Lakers the previous night was how the rest of the Nuggets supported their teammate. Carmelo scored 23 despite finishing 9-30 from the field, Kenyon Martin logged 18 points and seven rebounds, Linas Kleiza emerged from an ankle sprain that had his game derailed for over a week and scored a season-high 23 points, and Marcus Camby bounced back from a one dimensional game the night before to finish with 14 rebounds, eight points, and five blocks.

In addition to all the statistical help Iverson received, the Nuggets played a tremendously improved defensive game against the Mavericks. They out stole the Mavericks 13-3, out blocked them 6-3, and forced 18 turnovers resulting in 16 points and a 50% shooting mark from the field due to all the fast break opportunities that the D produced. Denver also, finally, did a good job taking care of the ball and only turned it over eight times.

A final note about this game was how George Karl only went three deep into his bench and played all of his starters (except Anthony Carter) 30+ minutes.

Denver is now 12-8 at the season’s 25% completion point and on pace to win close to 50 games, which is not bad for a Nuggets team that is still incomplete and inconsistent.

Go Nuggets!

1 comment:

NoYPi said...

I agree, it seems like the only constant on this team is AI's effort. When the rest of the team comes out to play they can beat ANY TEAM IN THE LEAGUE. When they don't the Answer can probably beat a mediocre team alone.

Bottomline is the rest of the team needs to decide where they want to take this. We all know where AI wants to go,..

You think they can play like this against the Spurs a couple of nights from now? All we can do is wait and see since everyday they wake up with a different mind set.