Let there be television coverage.
Good news Nuggets fans. Now that Denver has dispatched the Minnesota Timberwolves there will not be another Nuggets game that is not televised until next October. Denver wraps up the preseason with back to back games against the Lakers. Thursday’s tilt will be broadcast on TNT with Friday’s engagement on ESPN.
For the last time we are left to study box scores to glean some insight.
Looking back at Sunday’s 98-96 loss at Portland there appears to have been some positive things to take from the game. For the first time since the opening game at Utah the Nuggets starters faced off against another high quality group. Unlike the game in Utah, this time they held their own. Ever since I wrote about how I was concerned about the Nuggets’ mental state after the game in Taipei the players have responded.
Ty Lawson has not been playing many minutes, but when he does get on the floor the stats pile up. Lawson checked in with 6:24 left in the second quarter and the Nuggets down seven. Portland stretched their lead to 11 over the next three minutes. The Nuggets then closed the half on a 15-7 run with Lawson totaling six points, an assist, a rebound and two steals over the final 3:38. Lawson ended up posting a +4 in only seven minutes. On the flipside Anthony Carter played 19 minutes and ended up with a -12.
Tonight in the 129-100 romp over the Timberwolves Lawson had another nice game tallying ten points, eight assists, six rebounds and four steals. Lawson is going to have to earn minutes from Carter and if he keeps playing this well, he just might.
Chauncey Billups posted back to back four turnover games and has yet to put up an impressive stat line in any preseason game. Seeing as how he struggled against the Lakers in the Western Conference Finals last season it will be very interesting to see how he does over these final two preseason games.
In 49 minutes against Portland and Minnesota Nene has only ten shot attempts. He was also the only Nugget player to have a negative plus/minus against the Wolves with a -2.
Probably the most promising statistic from the past two games is 39.6%. The Nuggets held Portland to 39.7% from the field and Minnesota to 39.6%. The combined shooting of 67-169 by Portland and Minnesota comes out to 39.6%. Hopefully that is a sign the Nuggets are getting locked in on defense.
Thank God this is the last time I have to draw conclusions based on box scores.
Nuggets at Trail Blazers Highlights – Mostly Blazers clips here, but Melo scores a couple of dunks and Chauncey tosses in an insane layup.
Nuggets vs. Timberwolves Highlights – make sure to see Lawson’s half court shot at the end of the third, Afflalo’s left handed finish and Malik Allen actually throws down over someone!