Nuggets News [UPDATED with Kenyon Martin Flying Tigers release ]

On Tuesday, the Denver Nuggets played its first preseason game (that wasn’t a “scrimmage”) of the 2011-12 NBA season against the Phoenix Suns. The Nuggets came out on top 127-110 behind Ty Lawson’s game-high 21 points and Andre Miller’s game-high 12 assists. Though the game inexplicably wasn’t aired on Altitude, there was still enough online reaction from those who made it Pepsi Center to form a solid consensus of what occurred.

First, before we delve into the hard news I’d like to chime in on a topic that has continuously snowballed since the season got underway: respect.

I feel like I don’t even have to tell you, the readers, how much we appreciate and love you guys, because you should already know this. You are the very reason we spend countless hours of our own free time researching, studying and analyzing the Denver Nuggets. Without you guys, we wouldn’t be here. So, naturally, we care about what you think and post in the comments section. Every time we put up a new article we encourage you to give feedback because we want to hear from you, and though for the most part we take great joy in reading your responses, occasionally we have difficulty swallowing some of the more derogatory statements.

Let me just say this: There’s a difference between being critical, constructive and helpful and being flat-out disrespectful. We understand the rights you maintain under the First Amendment, and hope that you exercise these to your fullest abilities (we sure do!), all we ask is that you please respect the opinions of our writers, your fellow fans and members of the local (and national) media when giving feedback. Nobody is saying you can’t blast someone for being what you perceive as dead wrong, but please do so in a respectful manner. Telling us our blog sucks accomplishes nothing. Telling your fellow fans that they’re morons for thinking a certain way, also achieves nothing. The bottom line: This is a blog that aims to discuss and analyze all sides of a given issue. What this blog is not, is a platform for debating who’s wrong and who’s right then chastising those who may see things differently than you.

I hope you understand. The last thing we want to do is patrol our comments section like watchdogs all because a simple difference in opinion has a few people up in arms. We trust you guys. We know you are all intelligent human beings fully capable of composing compelling comments (how’s that for alliteration?). All we’re asking for is a little cooperation. Because remember, at the end of the day, we’re all here for one reason and one reason only, and that’s to see the Denver Nuggets succeed.

Cheers.

(And now on to the good stuff.)

As I tweeted earlier, the 2011-12 Pro Basketball Prospectus has officially been released in PDF format and features a paragraph by yours truly about Ty Lawson’s underrated shooting abilities in the Denver Nuggets chapter. Jeremy has been featured in past editions but was kind enough to let me make my mark this year. For those unaware, Basketball Prospectus is essentially a numerical and analytical bible of basketball released annually that recaps the NBA’s previous season and discusses each team’s present and future outlook at length. This is a book utilized by top-ranking NBA executives across the league and is an absolute must-have for hardcore NBA fans everywhere. As Houston Rockets general manager, Daryl Morey, who has been known as a trailblazer for utilizing different analytical methods during his tenure puts it, “Anyone who reads what Brad and Kevin have put together cannot help but come out a smarter fan on the other end. Basically, if you consider yourself a basketball fan and you are not reading this book, then you ought to turn in your serious fan credentials.”

As for Tuesday’s game, here is the box-score and some highlights as well. Because I didn’t get to see the game it’s hard to project who exactly made an impact and who didn’t, although judging by Twitter and the box-score, Faried again operated the entire night in “Beast Mode” while Julyan Stone continued to gain fans with his unique style of play. As mentioned in the opening paragraph, Ty Lawson led all scorers with 21 points on 6-11 from the field (2-4 from downtown) in 25 minutes of action. Nuggets.com’s Arron Lopez stated several different times on his Twitter account that Lawson looked excellent, and I’ll happily take his word for it. Mozgov finished with seven points, seven rebounds and four personal fouls in 21 minutes of action, while going 1-5 from the line in the process. In addition to his 12 assists, Andre Miller snagged four steals and a block to go with his eight points in nearly 30 minutes of action. Clearly however, Faried is the name that stands out most when analyzing the results, as not only did he have the best highlight reel of any Nugget, but his 14-point, six-rebound performance was only compiled in the second half! If he keeps those numbers up and averages starter minutes (around 30 per game), he’d be on pace for 28 points and 12 rebounds, which again makes Karl’s claim that Faried won’t be seeing many minutes this year all the more mind-boggling.

Which is kind of funny.

Because on a recent radio interview with 104.3 The Fan, Karl stated how Rudy Fernandez is J.R. Smith “without the insanity.” As we all know, there’s nothing quite like throwing a former player under the bus, although to be fair, Karl didn’t necessarily hesitate to do this even when J.R. was with Nuggets. All I can say is that if you continue to substitute minutes that should be going to Faried and dish them out to guys like Harrington, Koufos and Mozgov, then you simply have no room to talk about who the “insane” one is, especially when you’ve shown no inclination to easing up on the two-point guard lineup.

To further corroborate my point, our friends and authors of the aforementioned Basketball Prospectus, Kevin Pelton and Bradford Doolittle, had this to say regarding Faried in a recent Insider article they constructed for ESPN: “”When adjusted for strength of schedule, Faried’s translated NCAA statistics suggest he’s as ready to contribute as any other rookie in the league.” Yes, the very guys who write an annual novel that NBA general managers and executives fully endorse, are saying Faried is as ready as ANY rookie to contribute in the NBA this season, yet Karl is still hung up on the “rookie” label.

In other Insider news, John Hollinger has picked the Denver Nuggets to finish second in the Western Conference with a 42-22 record by the end of the year. Hollinger echos my points that youth, altitude, depth and a shortened season will greatly benefit the Nuggets when it comes to winning basketball games in 2012.

And for those who missed it, here’s the audio from Afflalo’s press conference, as well as a short video in which Masai Ujiri once again displays a healthy amount of wit when signing one of his players to a very lucrative contract.

[UPDATE]

Yahoo! Sports is reporting Kenyon Martin has been released from the Xinjiang Guanghui Flying Tigers of the Chinese Basketball Association. However, because of rules set forth by the CBA, Martin cannot return to the NBA until the team’s season officially ends sometime in February or March. Martin is an unrestricted free agent and will likely chose to sign with a title contender given his age and deteriorating body, although considering the magic Masai has worked in recent weeks I wouldn’t necessarily be shocked to see Martin return to Denver. As is pointed out in the article, this may set a precedent for J.R. Smith ans Wilson Chandler.

On a lighter note, the Nuggets will reportedly be wearing throwbacks this season! I know Denver fans have been begging for the Nuggets to don its early uniforms for years to no avail (thanks in large part to Carmelo Anthony who refused to wear them), but it appears this trend will finally be snapped this season. The NBA has disallowed the public to view the uniforms for now, but according to ESPN’s Paul Lukas, “Uni Watch has seen the design and can confirm that it’s a beauty.” Let’s hope the ’80s skyline unis are back for good!

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Kalen Deremo

Kalen was born in Durango, CO, in 1988 and graduated from Metropolitan State University of Denver in 2013 with a degree in journalism. He's now an itinerant hoping to travel as much as possible before eventually succumbing to the "real world." Aside from writing Kalen likes movies, music, spicy food and the great outdoors. Edward Abbey is his current idol.

Latest posts by Kalen Deremo (see all)

  • Jay

    Excellent. Thanks for the read!

  • CCH

    faried was great,but he is still very raw offensively and at times lost on defense. He’s going to be a great player though. Andre and ty together were flat out nasty, I can see how Karl labeled them the 2 best players in camp. Galo, moz,rudy, and nene all looked great as well.

    • Jason

      Everyone wants to jump on Karl for playing two PG’s, and I think that stems from the days of playing Billups and AC together, before we had Ty Lawson. And that is legit critique. However, other than JR, we didn’t have great options at guard with those teams.

      But last year with Ty/Chauncey then Ty/Raymond and know this year with Ty/Dre you are seeing amazing talented PG’s that can play together.

      Positions are overrated IMO. Granted, you can be exposed going too long with a two PG lineup, but in stretches it can simply change the dynamic of the game.

      • http://roundballminingcompany.com Kalen

        That’s a good point. No matter how hard I try I just can’t eradicate those images of botched lop passes that flew into the crowd by AC. Maybe like you said, more than anything, it’s just Karl’s overuse of the two-point guard lineup that gets me.

        • Jason

          Exactly. Overusage of that lineup will not be wise. But that being said, I think it will be very difficult for Karl to keep AAA and at times Rudy off the floor also. We are a solid 4 deep at guard, and I see all 4 of these guys mixing and matching.

          But Dre and Ty can downright dominate in stretches, and I for one actually look forward to that lineup from time to time!

  • CCH

    Oh and I really liked Stones game, he has a spot on this team before hamilton. Not very impressed with hamilton, didn’t play with energy and was lost on D.

    • Jason

      He’s a rook…give him time. He won’t be in the rotation this year unless we have injuries. We are too deep for him to get significant time.

  • steve

    faried = monster. he out hustles everyone and has the skill to back it up.

  • Daniel

    Streamed the game. From what I saw the Nuggets played with tons of energy (expected), and shared the ball extremely well. Also had a couple of moments during the second half where they absolutely stifled Phoenix with their defense.
    As someone said above Julyan Stone suprised me, made some great passes and he is tall! Also who said he can’t shoot? Knocked down a three and a jumpoer from the wing, decent form (much better than Rondo).
    Lawson is going to break out this year, simopy said. This is his team, and andre miller is going to be as solid a backup PG as you can get.
    And the Manimal! Straight up hustle and determination. Ridiculous energy, crowd igniter, everything you could want from a guy coming off the bench a solid 20-25 mins a game. Karl would be nuuuts not to play this guy.
    I swear he attempted a dunk towards the end of the game and jumped off two feet from about a foot and a half in front of the free throw line, but was fouled hard, and calmly knocked down two free throws.
    Thats my take, excited about this Nuggets team. They are deep, talented and I think they are going to play like they have something to prove, kinda like that 18-7 run post-trade.

    Anyway, appreciate your blog. Its the one website I religiously go to daily. You guys are the bomb.

    • Brad H.

      Good comment Daniel. Interesting to see how nervous everyone is about GK not giving Manimal enough minutes. I know GK said as much last night, but truly, Faried’s minutes will be determined by how hard he works and how disciplined on and off the court he shows himself to be. GK has always been hard on young players, but he’s hardest on stupid undisciplined players (which most rookies are their first yr in the league). GK is looking for young guys to prove to him that he can’t afford NOT to play them, by always being on time, by never being lazy, by never pouting, by showing respect for the game, and by working their asses off in practice and when they’re called on in game situations. A lot of young guys don’t like to play for a coach like that. Entitlement is what most young guys know. That don’t work for coach Karl. Julius Hodges comes to mind. GK will ruin a guy like that. But bring in a Ty Lawson who day in and day out proved that nothing was gonna keep him outada game . . . Hopefully Manimal has that kinda meddle. We’ll see.

      • Brad H.

        I mean mettle. :*]

        • Daniel

          I feel (hope) like he’s just too hard of a worker and too humble of a guy to have a that entitled, poor attitude that most young guys have. A lot of it is probably because he spent all 4 years in school. He’s had a little bit of time to mature. Pretty excited about this group of young core guys, the “Thuggets” era is over.

          • Brad H.

            I like this group too. And I like the Faried pick. From why I’m seeing he’s gonna be one of those “can’t keep me outdo game” guys? Not sure about J. Hamilton though.

            • Charlie

              Give Hamilton some time. I think he’s a good guy to have on the roster, and just an absolute steal getting him and Andre Miller for Felton. He’ll be an NBA player, I think the Nuggets like him a lot but they couldn’t have anticipated how the offseason would go and whether or not they needed to go young.

              With Fernandez and Brewer in the mix, he won’t play. I wouldn’t give up on him yet though. He’ll have a chance to show a little bit this season and get a year of tutelage under AAA and Andre Miller.

  • Ernie

    Thanks for the read Kalen. If someone does get personal in the comments section I don’t think it would be a problem to have a zero tolerance policy for that and eliminate the comment. Alan Sepinwall has something similar for his entertainment blog and he adds no political commentary rule as well (since that goes off topic and tends to get personal quickly). Keeps things civilized. Thanks again.

  • chronicnugs

    If the Nuggets are serious about employing the dribble drive offense, and it appears like they are, you guys should get accustom to the 2 pg set. It’s probably not going away for a while… http://www.denverpost.com/nuggets/ci_19582726

  • Aurress20

    Don’t take this the wrong way, because I’m super excited to have Faried on the team, on draft night I wanted no other player for the Nuggets besides Faried… But he is a rookie. And his “great play” was all in the 2nd half of a preseason game. It was scrub time.

    I have high expectations for the Manimal as well and I’m so excited to finally see him in a Nuggets uniform. But lets give Karl the benefit of the doubt on this one and let him bring Faried along slowly. I would look at last night’s performance more as “promise” and “potential” than “star-power.”

    Also, the game was played on Tuesday night, not Monday… Looks like you guys started 0-1 from the field on that one… but you “rebounded” perfectly and finished the game with many good “points” ;-) ahhh, see what I did there with all the basketball “refs” … see i just can’t stop myself.

    Another great blog! Especially considering the game was not televised and I’m marooned over here on the East Coast. Thanks again guys!

  • Herman Van Ness

    I was beginning to think I was living in an alternate universe. I could’ve sworn the game was played on Tuesday and not Monday. Anyway, after watching some other pre-season games I’m liking our squad even more now. We are so deep. I just hope egos and playing time don’t derail us because there will be guys that are very capable of getting minutes recording DNP-CD’s this year.

    • Brad H.

      Esp with GK

  • Aurress20

    @chronicnugs Yea, I saw that “dribble-drive” article yesterday and thought it was a great read but sighed in disappointment at the fact that it reassured Karl would be using the 2 PG line-up through out this season.

    I thought it was fun & neat when they did that with Felton & Ty last year. And told myself that it was just to help the newly acquired guys mesh, but now that Karl is looking to do the same with Dre & Ty, its just disappointing. (I didn’t much care for Dre in his 1st stint with the Nuggets, hopefully this time will be better.)

    • Jason

      Dre is amazingly talented and makes his teammates better. In his first stint, we were not a complete team. We lacked shooters till JR got here, but then Dre was traded. So that is one of the reasons Dre struggled. He is not a good outside shooter, and without a good SG, it exposed him a bit and teams collapsed the paint.

      With this team, it is a perfect fit for his talents. We have amazing outside shooters, and great athleticism. He will fit in amazingly here.

      And don’t be afraid of the two PG lineup…it will downright dominate in stretches. We have 2 amazing SG’s, so Karl will also be forced to use more traditional lineups because of it.

      • Brad H.

        Are you kidding me!? Ty and Raymond were extremely productive with the dribble drive last yr until raymond got hurt come playoff time. Miller will play even better with Ty; he’s smarter than ray, better hoops instincts, longer, will not force as many shots and consequently find the guys on the perimeter (or oop ‘em) more consistently than ray could. GK has so many weapons this year — and you know he’s lovin it.

  • dynamo.joe

    I streamed it as well, searched “denver nuggets streaming” and went down the list until I found a site that didn’t require registration or payment or taking surveys, etc.

    I missed most of the 1st, so I didn’t get to see Nene.

    Ty was Ty. Breaking down people with his speed, making some nice passes, stroking a couple shots from outside. If the Nuggets are able to put together the kind of season Hollinger (and me too) is projecting, he should finally get the kind of recognition he deserves. I know a lot of people not named George Karl won’t be happy to hear this, but he and andre were pretty good together.

    Dre looked good. Better than I expected. I know everyone says “he always played like an old man” and its only 1 game, but I didn’t see any drop off at all from his last stint with the Nuggs. Anyway, they better win early and often if all the rumors about Dre and Rudy complaining about minutes are true, cuz there just aren’t enough minutes in a game if you have 4 guards who probably could all be legitmate starters in the league and that doesn’t count hamilton, assuming he isn’t D league bound (which i think he probably is).

    Someone earlier said Moz looked great. All i saw was pass after pass that he couldnt handle. Due to the language barrier he thinks ‘Peeg on Roll’ is some sort of sandwich. Lastly, while I appreciate a tough center, he must have played in a no-blood-no-foul league in Russia or they have a the-arm-is-part-of-the-ball rule.

    If Karl is really going to play Nene at PF, Bird is our best center, followed by Koufus. The stone Koufus’ hands are made of is slightly softer than Moz’ and he can set a pick. The rebound rate of the 7 footers is roughly the same, which frankly surprised me based on the 5 minutes of Koufus we saw last year.

    If Faried is relegated to the D league its a travesty.

    The same can probably said about Stone, he looked great, admittedly in garbage time. If you need to choose a rookie guard to travel with the team, you pick Stone over Hamilton.

    If you just look at the box score you might come to the conclusion that Demarre Carrol had a decent game. You would be wrong. He was spectacularly bad. I can’t even form a cogent thought to describe how he was bad. All I can say is he is the JR Smith to my Karl, i.e. if I was coach that guy would never get another minute. The odd part about that is that I really like JR.

    I know, TLDR, but since so many didn’t get to see the game I thought it was warranted.

  • Omar

    for those criticizing faried, what do you expect? George Karl is not going to give a rookie many minutes let alone let him start. Faried has to start somewhere and this was a good start. He left his mark on the game and i’m sure he left GK impressed. Now he needs to continue to have nights like these to crack the rotation.

  • Aaron

    What will it take for Karl to play Nene in the hole and Faried at the 4? If we have a size problem, move Gallo over to guard a 4 on D, (he’s 6’10).

    I think we should have a quicker, more athletic lineup like this and bring Mozzy off the bench. Please tell me we’re not going to play Al Buckets over Faried this year.

  • pgwarner

    Guys – I thought you might enjoy the disclaimer that “The Big Picture” has on their comments section:

    “Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data, ability to repeat discredited memes, and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Also, be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor even implied. Any irrelevancies you can mention will also be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.”

  • Pindar

    Regarding Coach Karl’s comment on JR, the Nuggets have a history of candid head coaches. None better than Doug Moe. I always rather liked that.

    • http://roundballminingcompany.com Kalen

      I too appreciate a candid coach, although with Karl you kind of get the sense he’s more haughty towards J.R. than anything.

      • Jason

        He was, but that ship has sailed anyways. JR was always like the step child he didn’t want or didn’t like.

        But JR is gone…so Karl will have to direct his frustrations towards the refs now. :)

  • TimmyStro

    I really like the way Faried played and I think people overlooked the play of Juylan Stone…. He played great defense and contributed well pretty good for a first game off the bench…. 4 rebounds, 4 assists and 5 pts, and the thing I like the most is he took two shots, that were GOOD looks and made them both (a two and a three), and the best part of all is he had zero turnovers. I feel like he can and will be a big asset when talking about depth and bench play. I feel he deserves many more opportunities off the bench…

    Agree…?

    • http://roundballminingcompany.com Kalen

      Agree 100 percent. I loved the Stone signing from Day Numero Uno and hyped him up accordingly. I’m glad to see he’s not letting me down. The other day on Twitter I mentioned him saying he reminded me of Rubio, to which he tweeted me back, “He don’t want it like I do,” or something to that extent. Gotta love his determination.

  • springs kearns

    Kalen, great web site. Daily stop for me. I’ve been impressed with Ujiri. He seems to have his fingers firmly on the pulse of the Denver/Colorado fan base. George Karl is right on with is JR comments. I appreciate a coach that will tell it like it is. If the player has thin skin, tough. Sometimes egos are so big, yet they bruise so easily. Excited for this year and to see how they come together as a team. If players accept their roles, things should be okay.

    Faried will come on slow. That’s fine. After 20/30 games, he should be seeing some good minutes. Will love to see how he and Birdman come together.

  • KW

    Would we want KMart back?

    • Aurress20

      Tough question to answer. He’s older. His game isn’t want it once was. But after the trade (and actually before) he was the “enforcer”… he gave our team an identity and character, even if that identity was often given the name “Thuggets.”

      When he strutted (???) his stuff after that late game put back to beat the Lakers in LA… well I could have just cried with Nuggets Pride. That tough guy mentality will be lacking come playoff time… or so I fear.

      I love the new Nuggets. A younger, more team oriented group with a ceiling unlimited. But I think we’ll miss K-Mart’s bad boy leadership.

      • KW

        Agreed. I’m really looking to Manimal to provide that toughness without acting like a thug. I read somewhere about a summer game where somebody on the opposing team was really playing rough and Faried was sent in to put a stop to it and he did. I’m very high on Faried. I like Kmart when he was good but hated him when he was bad.

      • Brad H.

        And against Dirk and the Mavs in the playoffs a coupla yrs ago! I agree we will miss that nastiness, but ultimately nastiness isn’t what takes you deep into the playoffs. Talent, Team, Relentless D

  • Ricardo

    Stone played pretty well coming off the bench having 5 pts, 4 rebounds, and 4 assists. He was a good addition to the nuggets; hopefully he could be in the rotation later in the season. And Faried played like his nickname, “the Manimal”. He had 14 points, 6 rebounds, that’s some good numbers for his first game as a rookie. He should be able to contribute right away for the nuggets and, hopefully, he could be in their rotation, later in the season, as well.

  • Aurress20

    I don’t understand why the “China Guys” can’t sign with an NBA team until after the Chinese season is over, specifically if they are released like K-Mart. Anyone wanna shed some light on this?

    Cuz I want Wilson Chandler back! Hahaha!

    • Kalen

      It’s a stipulation the CBA made very clear during the lockout. I don’t know why, but I would guess it was to prevent players from just packing up and leaving mid-season. At the same time, it doesn’t really make much sense to keep this rule going when you purposely waive a guy. To me, it just sounds like China wanted to flex its muscles a bit.

    • Michael (another aussie Nugz fan)

      As part of the FIBA rules players must obtain a letter of clearance from their previous team before being able to sign with a new team.

      Although K-Mart is waived the Chinese team won’t give him the clearance letter until the end of the CBA season in fear of big punishment from the league office.

      The guys knew the deal when they signed over there.
      I don’t think we will re-sign any of the guys over there apart from Chandler. K-Mart’s toughness and defense would be a bonus but I don’t think we’ll have the money to afford him or the roster spots to give him the playing time he’ll want.

      I see us cutting Higgins, Carrol and Ruffin to free up some spots.

  • jeff

    i only expect the 2 pg offense late in fourth quarters, kinda like last year

  • evan

    I think the two center starting rotation isn’t a bad idea, against some teams, yet starting nene at center and… say Faried, (assuming he continues being a baddass) at PF, would be good against other teams, (perhaps teams that don’t have a very good PF that Farried would have to defend.) I know changing a starting line up so frequently is rarely, if ever, practiced in basketball, let alone the NBA, BUT what team has had the incredible depth to do this ?

    Also, what do the Nuggets need more then anything? Rebounds. Nene can’t, Moz and Kosta, for some reason can’t, and that’s where Farried comes in. Paired with the 2nd team coming in with Miller, Lob city will be in Denver not LA. 20-30min a game depending on his performance. Potential ROY, if Karl wises up. I’m convinced that he would have sat Melo if he was the coach back then.

    • evan

      Additionally, as someone who was able to watch it live, I’d like to add Farried looked lost at times and was manhandled in off-ball situations. Yet, his pure athleticism and instincts took over, witch is something you can’t teach where as the other stuff he’ll pick up quickly.

      • Jason

        THIS is why Karl is saying his minutes might be limited. Like it or not, Karl is being wise by bringing him along slowly. But if he continues to shine, he will force Karl to play him in the rotation.

        • evan

          Blake Griffon, you know the ROY Allstar, was lost at the beginning of the year too, but He caught on pretty quick. However, he still lacks a post game and has trouble creating his own offence, but like Farried, his athleticism shined through and he adapted quickly. I’m not saying Farried is in Griffon’s league, very few are, but there are some parallels to be drawn nonetheless.

  • jeff

    The fact that he looked lost is enough for coach karl not to play him

    • Bryan

      This. Plus, the young guys weren’t very good on defense. The suns actually mounted a bit of a comeback in the 4th. And if you listened to the press cobference with Karl, he talked about Faried similar to JR.

      He’s going to have to do much better on defense, to get minutes. But Faried was saying the right things after, so I think he’ll get it.

      • evan

        I wish I would have seen that Press Conference. Any links?

  • http://espn.com Chris

    Is there any chance we resign Kenyon Martin He is a pretty good defender, and he guards Dirk well.

    • evan

      We can resign him, but he won’t be able to play till march I think it is. However, he would be a great addition to have in the playoffs. Also, he’ll be rested by then. =)

  • Skyler

    How did gallanari play, he hasn’t been talked about yet. And how was brewer, his stats looked bad.

  • Beefyswats

    Kalen and Jeremy,

    Long time reader here…always love reading what RMC has to say.

    I streamed the entire game. Some quick hits:

    – Andre Miller to Bird/Mozgov/Koufus/Faried/Gallinari/Nene. Literally ALL of them play above the rim and are capable of catching and making dunks, and Dre is the best in the league at it. Make no mistake about it, the oops are back in a HUGE way in Denver.

    – Dre had one of the sickest hesitation dribbles I’ve ever seen in the third. It was a jerky giddy-yup motion at the top of the key but it absolutely blew by Dudley.

    – Gallinari still looks like an awkward galloping camel on the break, but that was an excellent left handed reverse layup in traffic. He is going to have to become a 20ppg scorer, can he do it?

    – If Rudy Fernandez is “JR without the insanity”, he sure didn’t show much sanity. He was jacking up some pretty bad shots on the move (where he is least accurate) and does not seem to realize that he is far better as a set shooter.

    – Mozgov is still VERY raw. Expect a lot of Bird/Koufus minutes at C when he picks up 3 fouls in the first.

    – Defensive rotations, for a preseason game and a group of guys that have barely played together, were excellent. Players were rotating correctly, they jammed the paint, and had a hand up every time.

    – Julyan Stone had some INCREDIBLE passes and his touch with the ball was beautiful. He has excellent court vision and seems to almost be a younger version of Dre. If his shot comes along, we may have found a great backup to Ty going forward.

    Conversely, Cory Higgins needs to be sent to the D-League with Jordan Hamilton as soon as possible.

    – Kenneth Faried. He was absolutely INSANE. He is Renaldo Balkman if Renaldo Balkman were about 2-3x better at everything. He boards well. He played solid defense. He dunked like crazy. 14 points, 6 rebounds (FIVE offensive) in 15 minutes. Yes it was against the Suns and preseason…but you have to love the promise here.

    • Beefyswats

      To the above poster, Corey Brewer was okay, but…that’s exactly what everyone expects him to be. Serviceable.

      Just think of him as this year’s Dahntay Jones. A defensive specialist, ability to hit the 3, athletic, but not excellent at anything.

      • evan

        Let me ask you this:

        Farried or Brewer?

        • dynamo.joe

          Without question Faried, but brewer was better than expected.

  • jeff

    Brewer, he knows what hes doing on Defense and he will be the one to cover durant..

  • Skyler

    If anyone knows where to stream the game tonight that would be a fantastic Christmas present

    • evan

      try p2p4u.net

  • jeff

    first row sports or nbalive just look it up on google

  • Amel

    Yep, firstrow works out every time for me.

  • Skyler

    Sweet. Thanks guys.