2008-09 Game 38: Denver Nuggets vs Detroit Pistons Game Thread

At the beginning of the season who would have guessed that when the Detroit Pistons came visiting the Denver Nuggets that neither Carmelo Anthony nor Allen Iverson would be in a Nugget uniform?

As we all know, AI will be on the court though with his new team and supposedly a new role.  Looking at his points per game and what he has been saying it would appear that Iverson has toned down his one man band, but I am not so sure.  J.A. Adande has an article on ESPN.com talking about how the Pistons are getting the chemistry down and AI is allowing Rodney Stuckey, who has been great over the last six weeks, to handle the ball more and he is happy to let someone else carry the water and as a result the Pistons enjoyed a seven game winning streak.

Like Lee Corso I have to say, “Not so fast my friend.”

Sure AI is playing a couple fewer minutes than his traditional 40 plus a night and yes, he is taking fewer shots, but the true reason why his scoring has fallen so far is because he is not making shots.  Before I declare AI to be a new reformed team player, I will have to see him fitting into a half court offense. 

The good news for the Nuggets is AI has never beaten a former NBA team in his first try.  That’s right, he is 0-1.  I have no idea what Chauncey Billups’ record against his former teams is and he has far too many former teams to look it up.  I am pretty sure tonight’s tilt will be more emotional for Chauncey than AI.  

Denver has become a much more efficient offensive team thanks largely to the exchange of Iverson for Chauncey.  Detroit is still a solid defensive team, but they are no where near the juggernaut they used to be in the glory days and it will be interesting to see who the Pistons assign AI to defend with Chauncey and J.R. on the floor. 

Even though they are no longer a defensive force, Detroit still plays at a slow pace.  Denver will have to be ready to play intense defense as they did for most of the game against the Heat and if they move the ball on offense they way they did on Wednesday they will have success on offense even if J.R. and Linas Kleiza are not red hot from behind the arc.

From an injury standpoint we all know Melo will be on the bench once again nursing his fractured hand.  For the Pistons Rip Hamilton is out and Rasheed Wallace missed his third straight game on Wednesday in Portland and tonight he is a game time decision.  Even if Wallace does not play the pistons have a strong front line with Antonio McDyess, Jason Maxiell, Amir Johnson and Kwame Brown.

The one area that really concerns me is Kleiza guarding Tayshaun Prince.  Well, actually I am worried about Kleiza no matter who he is guarding, but Prince has stepped up his offensive game with three straight 20 point performances and he is crafty enough that he just might abuse LK.  As far as the closing lineup of Billups, Anthony Carter and Smith goes, I like Billups on Stuckey and Carter on AI, but Prince will be a tough cover for Smith as well due to his length. 

The Nuggets have a four game losing streak at the hands of the Pistons and wile they are a good team, Detroit is no longer the conference finalist caliber squad they have been over the previous six seasons.  I think we can expect a close, sometimes frustrating, physical grind it out game and hopefully the Nuggets can get another win without Melo.

Denver Nuggets Game Notes

Featured Blogs:   Detroit Bad Boys | Need4Sheed

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    In high school one of my best friends was a 6’7″ guy that I played basketball with. He was a much better player than I was, but because we played a lot in practice and during the summer. I was a decent defensive player, but he had a serious height advantage, but because I knew exactly what he wanted to do I could stop him much more frequently than I normally would have been able to.

    I wonder if that will come in to play tonight. After playing each other day after day in practice does Anthony Carter know how to defend AI better than most? Perhaps it is the other way around and AI can score on Carter at will. How about Chauncey and Stuckey?

    I think it makes for an interesting story line.

  • CCH

    I have a feeling Dahntay will be put on AI to frustrate him and bang him around. Much like kobe did when AI scored 50 against the lakers but like 0 in the 4th with Kobe on him.

  • Josh Hopp

    Guys like Dahntay have been trying to bang AI around for 13 years. Generally they fail, that’s why he is AI.

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    Nuggets were playing zone there for a couple of possessions. First time this season I believe.

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    OK, I have had enough of this zone. Maxiel is killing it on the offensive glass.

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    ESPN.com has added plus/minus to their box scores. I like it.

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    I like the way the Nuggets are playing. Altitude says they had 20 points in the paint in the first quarter.

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    Horrible call on Nene posting up McDyess.

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    If the Nuggets can take care of the ball on offense and box out on D they will win this game going away.

  • Josh Hopp

    ARGH! Detroit 2nd chances killing us!

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    Halftime Stats:

    Pace Factor – 86.3

    Defensive Efficiency – 88.1

    Offensive Efficiency – 111.2

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    I think we all knew that LK and J.R. would cool off from three point range, but not like this. Dang.

  • Josh Hopp

    Way to carry your sqaud Chaunce.

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    Denver is completely flat after halftime again.

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    What do we have to do to get Kenyon to stop trying to put shots off the glass. He is roughly 0-20 on that shot this year. Just put it straight in Kenyon.

  • Josh Hopp

    4 on Nene. That’s bad. K-Marts jumper is cold tonight

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    Chauncey matches AI’s three. Nice, but still just another jumper.

  • Josh Hopp

    Nene should be MANHANDLING this Detroit frontcourt!

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    Let’s see if that T gets the Nuggets going again. Guess not horrible three attempt by Chauncey.

  • Josh Hopp

    Time for a time out karl

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    Do the Nuggets care about this game? Looks like the answer right now is not at all.

  • Josh Hopp

    If we lose the game it will be because of the last 4 minutes of play. call a TO NOW

  • Josh Hopp

    oh. they did

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    That was by far the best possession of the half.

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    OK, take LK out. Renaldo Balkman anyone?

  • Josh Hopp

    Can we trade AI before the 4th quarter?

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    Nene is letting Kwame Brown push him all over the floor. Man up Nene!

  • Josh Hopp

    I mean LK

  • Josh Hopp

    Penalty time.

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    The refs just officially lost all credibility after letting Kenyon get hammered and then calling that foul on Andersen. Pathetic.

  • Josh Hopp

    Thank science for the 10 missed Detroit free throws

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    Great drive by J.R. He has been great when he has gone to the basket. Horrible from the perimeter.

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    Sorry about that brief technical interruption.

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    Dahntay, AC and J.R. should not be on the court together. They have no idea how to play together.

  • Josh Hopp

    AI for 3.

    That STUNG

  • Josh Hopp

    These 2nd chance points are just comical now

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    Will someone please block out Maxiell! Good Lord!

  • Josh Hopp

    I think we should put Balkman in there to mix things up right now. He will change the flow of the game and that’s what we need

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    Come one Nene we need these.

  • Josh Hopp

    AAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHH!

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    Nuggets doing all they can to lose this game.

  • Josh Hopp

    First absolute nail-biter in a while. It’ll feel good to pull through

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    I figured it would be like this…frustrating.

  • Josh Hopp

    first pistons lead of the game!! if we waste this possession on a jump shot i will kill something

  • Josh Hopp

    nuggets lose against a massively handicapped pistons squad in denver

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    The refs can suck my big white a**. Two different sets of calls on opposite ends of the court. What a joke.

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    I hate the Nuggets right now. What a horrible half. The refs are 1b on the hate list.

  • UnarmingMermaid

    Hey guys!

    I like the new site Jeremy.

    What an aweful loss by the Nugs. Terrible.

  • BeefySwats

    Welp.

    That was certainly a disappointing way to lose the game.

  • NuggetsandRockiesGirl

    As a lurker at the old blog, I figured it would be a good time to come and post on the new one. Great new blog by the way Jeremy! I have always been a fan of the nuggets in general, but this is the first season I have followed them somewhat in depth…it started out as a coping mechanism until baseball season starts up again and has turned into something more. I admit to be somewhat of a Nuggets/ basketball newbie (especially when it comes to basketball lingo and the technical stuff), but feel I have already learned more about the team from you all at this blog and the previous one. I am starting to get to know our roster pretty well. Look forward to more discussion with y’all about the Nuggets b-ball soon!

    Tough loss tonite. Hopefully the next game will go better and also keeping my fingers crossed for some Renaldo Balkman playing time asap!

    -Nikki

  • http://www.roundballminingcompany.com jeremy

    Hi Nikki,

    Welcome to the new blog. Thanks for the comment and I look forward to hearing more from you, at least until pitchers and catchers report next month.

    I appreciate all of you who have followed me over from the old blog. Thanks for the support everyone!