Rapid Reaction: Nuggets 72, Grizzlies 81

Denver Nuggets 72 Final

Recap | Box Score

81 Memphis Grizzlies
Danilo Gallinari, SF 29 MIN | 2-8 FG | 2-2 FT | 6 REB | 1 AST | 7 PTS | -8After exploding for a career-high 39 points against the Mavericks last night, the Rooster laid an egg in this one, shooting two of seven and getting to the free line just twice. When Gallo settles for contested long range jumpers and fails to attack the basket, his consistency and effectiveness suffer, and tonight was a perfect example. On defense, he could do nothing to slow down Rudy Gay’s onslaught in the 4th quarter which ultimately sealed the victory for memphis.
Kenneth Faried, SF 25 MIN | 5-7 FG | 1-2 FT | 4 REB | 1 AST | 11 PTS | -7Faried’s energy was a bright spot once again, as he started the game off strong with hustle and effort. But it was quickly dimmed as he got himself into quick foul trouble, limiting his minutes, and restraining the impact he could have as he held himself back to avoid fouling out. He did a good job on both ends of the floor, but ultimately had he avoided a few mental mistakes, he could have made a much bigger difference.
Kosta Koufos, C 26 MIN | 4-6 FG | 0-0 FT | 6 REB | 3 AST | 8 PTS | -1In the first quarter, Koufos couldn’t muster up any ability to stop Zach Randolph on defense. He played better over the course of the game, but the larger problem, for which he and Faried share much of the blame, was a lack of defensive rebounding. The Grizzlies beat the Nuggets 17 to 10 on the offensive glass, and scored a bunch of easy second- and third-chance points as a result. Koufos ended up fouling out midway through the fourth quarter, and as the Nuggets were fairly fatigued and Faried was also in foul trouble, this proved to be somewhat costly.
Ty Lawson, PG 28 MIN | 1-7 FG | 1-2 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 3 PTS | -7Lawson was virtually invisible in this game, and when that happens it’s a pretty sure key to a Nuggets loss. Three points and one assist is simply an unacceptable performance from Ty, excuses about fatigue and a road-heavy schedule be damned. When he disappears, so do the Nuggets’ chances of winning.
Andre Iguodala, SG 41 MIN | 5-10 FG | 1-4 FT | 3 REB | 5 AST | 12 PTS | -12If the game had ended after the first half, Iguodala would have received an A. He opened up the game continuing his aggressive play, driving to the basket and creating easy scoring opportunities for teammates. (He was a better point guard than both Lawson and Miller in this game). But some very costly turnovers and otherwise head-scratchingly sloppy plays (360-degree pivot in the corner as he launches a wild, contested 3-pointer) down the stretch knock his grade down a few notches. But he did at least play with effort the entire time, and it’s good to see him putting that in more consistently of late.
Corey Brewer, SF 30 MIN | 5-10 FG | 1-1 FT | 4 REB | 2 AST | 12 PTS | -7Brewer is another player who might have earned a higher grade if not for some careless turnovers. He did make a few big shots at some key points in the game to keep it close, and defended well throughout, but he really only thrives when the Nuggets are getting up and down the court, and this was not that game. He was mostly a positive, but had a fairly limited impact.
Timofey Mozgov, C 13 MIN | 0-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 0 PTS | -5Mozgov was pretty good on defense and pretty bad on offense, where he looked pretty much lost. It may be a function of not always being in the rotation, but he doesn’t seem to really know how to fit into the offensive flow. It was unfortunate to see that in this game, because one would expect Timo to be one of the Nuggets players more adaptable to its slow-paced, half court style of play. There are rumors he is on the block, and it will not be in the least bit surprising if Mozzie is gone by the trade deadline.
JaVale McGee, C 22 MIN | 5-11 FG | 2-2 FT | 9 REB | 0 AST | 12 PTS | +1McGee was arguably the best Nuggets player tonight. True, some of the “bad JaVale” was on display, with some wild shots and errant passes. But his defense and rebounding were at the center of Denver keeping the game close for as long as they did. He has six blocks on the stat sheet, but his presence in the paint altered many more, and really took a dimension away from the Grizzlies offense. It was a good example of why he needs more minutes, yet he had only 22 in this game despite both Koufos and Faried being in foul trouble.
Andre Miller, PG 28 MIN | 2-5 FG | 3-5 FT | 3 REB | 4 AST | 7 PTS | +1The question is not if Andre Miller took bong hits at halftime, but how many. I’m sure from a Memphis perspective, Rudy Gay single handedly won the game for them in clutch time. From a Denver perspective, it can be said that Miller single handedly lost it (in more ways than one). He was just laughing and chuckling away as, at the most critical juncture of the game, he started inexplicably throwing the ball away again and again. This could have been the 9th game in 10 days, and there would still be no excuse for that, and it canceled out every bit of good he might have done earlier in the game.
George KarlI was fully prepared to give Karl a good grade for this game until the fourth quarter, when things fell apart. His biggest transgression was when he all but conceded the game with 0:46 remaining and the Nuggets down by eight after a missed 3-pointer by Gallo. With a judicious use of fouling and timeouts an eight point deficit is not insurmountable in 46 seconds, but Karl did not have his players foul at all, instead allowing Memphis to wind down nearly the entire shot clock until Wayne Ellington connected on a 3-pointer to seal the game. It was Z-Bo who grabbed the defensive rebound after Gallinari’s miss. Had George instructed his players during the timeout to immediately foul the rebounder if they miss their shot, Denver may have had an opportunity, perhaps unlikely but at least extant, to contend for the win, or a chance to go into overtime. Instead, he waved the white flag. Another fourth quarter mistake was leaving Faried in when the fact he had five fouls was clearly inhibiting his effectiveness on the court. What makes Faried valuable is that he’s always full throttle, so when he’s afraid to step on the gas, he should be sitting on the bench. I also thought Evan Fournier should have been sent in, given how ineffective both point guards were. He’d at least have been a pair of fresh legs, and perhaps a spark of energy off the bench. All of that said, it should be noted that Karl did manage the game fairly well for the first three quarters. Specifically, he went big to good effect. But if mistakes cost the game in the end, the importance of any early game positives fades away.

Four Things We Saw

  1. In good standing. The Nuggets finish the year, and the most difficult two months of their schedule, with a record of 17-15 (.531), including a league-best 9-1 home record. They are second in the Northwest Division, and if the playoffs started tomorrow they would be the seventh seed and meet the Oklahoma City Thunder in the first round. Considering how badly many of the individual players and the team as a whole have played at times, and how rough the opening schedule has been, this a a relatively respectable position to be in at this point. And given the very friendly January schedule with only three road games, this team could really be poised to surge, even if tonight’s game did not make them look like it.
  2. The Nuggets’ true identity soon will be revealed. This last 4-in-5 has been a picture perfect microcosm of the entire Nuggets season. Two fantastic wins sandwiched by a horrible loss and an ugly loss, with Denver alternately looking like two completely different teams. January will be a pivotal month, as the long home stretches will be proving grounds for questions about consistency, chemistry and slumps. If they cannot find stability and focus, or start meshing together more consistently despite having so many games at the Pepsi Center, we may expect Masai Ujiri to start getting busy and shaking up the roster some.
  3. How low can you go? The Nuggets’ 72 points were the fewest they have scored in a game this season, lower than the 75 they scored in their Halloween loss to the 76ers. Denver is now 4-7 (.363) in games in which they score 100 points or fewer, and 13-7 (.650) in games in which they score more than 100 points.
  4. Have a very safe and happy New Year’s, everybody! Let’s hope the Nuggets can start 2013 off on the right foot with a revenge win against the Clippers.on New Year’s Day.


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Joel is a long time Denver Nuggets (and Broncos) fan from Colorado who's been living in Japan since the mid-90s, and blogging about the Nuggets since 2008. You can contact and follow him on Twitter: @denbutsu.
  • Aaron

    All the turnovers with 2 minutes left were dissapointing. We’re still too up and down at the end of games.

    Having said that, we were at the end of a 4 in 5 and the game was tied with 2 minutes left. So, kudos to the guys for showing up for this one. As far as the future, I would welcome a matchup with the Grizz in the playoffs. . . not the Clips. Here’s to a new year with some home games!!!


      Points vs <400% team : 12.0 ppg
      Points vs 400%<x<600% team : 17.3 ppg
      Points vs +600% team : 17.0 ppg

  • Ackdog

    Young teams should be allowed to make mistakes! Karl was just horrible down the stretch. He made every wrong move he could with about 4 to 5 minutes to go in the game. Maybe Masai’s next move should be a young coach that has a bit more patience. OH MY!!!!!!! and maybe a jump shooter too!

    • Frank

      young teams? All the mistakes on offense came from 37 year old andre miller? on defense it was all on Karl, putting 5 foul faried at center

      • Ackdog

        Exactly my point Frank!! YOUNG Ty and YOUNG McGee should have been out there at the end. Not OLD ass man Miller and 5 fould Faried. Let the young boys play and learn and if you lose you lose but at least you learn!

        • Brian

          Yeah but Ty was injured.

        • Guy

          The YOUNG Thunder made it all the way to the finals last year. Stop making excuses for this team. Most of these players have been in the league at least 4 or 5 years and have been in the playoffs at least 2 or three years. This team is not the Charlotte Bobcats. The youth excuse is for losers, next you’ll be telling us that their tired. Good teams don’t make excuses.

  • googergieger

    George Karl made Keith Smart look like a coach of the year tonight. Horrible line ups. Horrible substitutions. No offense. Memphis had no answer for McGee and he still didn’t get any major minutes. Kofous was horrible all game and still played major minutes and didn’t see more because he fouled out. Miller played way too much despite his constant “who cares” approach on defense costing us big. Gallo was never put in any situations to succeed.

    This is the game that better stop the arguments on Karl and Kofous. They both need to go. McGee needs to start seeing major effin minutes at center. Karl needs to come up with a rotation that makes effin sense. And he needs to stop playing a proven failure of a two guard line up.

    This better be his last year. I’m done with the Nuggets come next year if he is still here.

    God I’m so effin pissed at Karl and his favorites right now.

    • Ackdog

      Agreed. Old man Miller was awful in the last few minutes but KArl refused to go to Lawson who didn’t have a great game but at least has the speed to keep up with Conlan. McGee is really a game changer at the rim but Karl waits to late to put him in. You really have to wonder what the hell he was thinking!!

    • devin

      quit defending gallo to much, you rant about every other player and karl but yet gallo has another inconsistent night and still praise him. just go for another already then, you know there not going to fire karl. i dont like fans that threaten to switch teams just because the team is having a bad year. those are not true fans.

      • googergieger

        I’m not really defending Gallo. I just know people are going to call for a trade for his inconsistent play despite not really taking into account when Karl played him and what was going on when he played. Not to mention completely ignore everyone else having a bad game, though not really their fault either. Karl had one of the most asinine and insane substitution patterns I’ve ever seen tonight. Outside of McGee nobody played great. And I’m not going to switch teams, I’m just going to stop watching basketball. I’m pulling for Denver, but if Karl sticks around next year, what is the point in watching someone that is the most predictable unpredictable person ever?


      the REAL PROBLEM OF nuggers are 3 :


      but MASAI see the match ?

  • Ban Johnson

    Javale McGee has played more than 25 minutes just once this season. ONCE! (In a 9-9 fg domination against the Pacers.) Andre Miller has played more than 25 minutes 17 times. George Karl’s bias when it comes to those 2 players is completely stupid and indefensible.

    This was a tie game well into the 4th, Koufos fouled out, and then the Grizzlies got 3 or 4 easy buckets in a row…all with McGee still sitting on the bench. What was Karl waiting for? McGee had been playing well. What’s the point of putting him back in with 1 1/2 minutes left, when the game’s already out of reach?

    Grizzlies got this game played at their pace, and it was reffed to allow a physical style, and the Nuggets still had a great chance to take it. The Grizzlies can’t deal with the Nuggets’ length. But Karl has to play it!

  • googergieger

    We honestly should have won this game. They had no answer for McGee on both ends of the court. So nobody better come out with this, we are two above five hundred with our bad schedule and it was a back to back!

    Fire George fucking Karl next year and make sure whoever you get next brings some fucking logic to the table.

  • Shannon

    As soon as Koufos fouled out McGee should have came straight in. Gay scored back-to-back lay-ups and Randolph scored in the paint whilst we had Faried playing center. Nuggets lost all inside defensive presence. Then when he comes in he blocks a potential lay-up.

    6 4th quarter turnovers to the Grizzlies two certainly didn’t help either.

  • Ackdog

    Anybody for trading Gallo? He is way to inconsistent for me! A jump shooter and a new coach would be a great New Years resolution for the Nuggets

    • Ban Johnson

      There hasn’t been a single Nugget who has been consistent this year, (with the possible exceptions of Brewer and Koufos.)

      Gallinari clearly has star potential. Faried, Lawson, and McGee do too. You can’t trade any of those guys unless you get at least that much potential back.

      • googergieger

        Kofous was trash tonight, last night, and honestly most nights. He just plays with our best line up surrounding him to make him look better than he is. Brewer has great energy always but he shouldn’t play major minutes. Spark off the bench. Exactly what he should be.

        Gallo played bad tonight but not his fault. Our offense was awful all game and he only got the ball twice in a decent flow of offense where he nailed a three and went to the line. Also when he attacked the paint a few times our spacing was god awful. Kofous and Faried clog the paint so no one can attack it. One of the main problems with Miller and Lawson out there. Everyone will help off Miller.

        Kofous better stop getting all these minutes. Time to develop McGee into the guy that gets most of the center minutes. Don’t care if he has a bad game. Time to develop him. Time to let him get some chemistry with our best line up. With what should be our closing line up.

        • Ackdog

          Gallo is supposed to have this sweet jump shot but he doesn’t. Stats don’t lie he may have potential and that’s why Denver should trade him for a legit 3 shooter. This dribble drive offense will not work with this roster. Especiallty the starters. The need a consistent shooter to keep the spacing. JR Smith would be better than Gallo at the moment

          • John

            Yes at the moment… but just wait…. JR will self destruct in 5, 4, 3…..

          • googergieger

            How many times did he realistically catch the ball and have a wide open look?

            • Ackdog

              2 for 7 tonight. He should shoot the ball 15 times a game or drive to the rim get fouled and go to the line. With his skill set he should be averagng 15 to 20 shots a game. He is without question the Nuggets best offensive player but why shoot only 7 times tonight and 23 times the night before. That surely confuses his teammates and coaches

              • John

                Excellent point.

              • googergieger

                Under the rim twice and put the ball up and it got blocked. Desperation step back three at the end he had to take. So really, 2 for 5. Also his team mates and coaches?! He didn’t get the effin ball. You have to put guys in places to succeed. When he was given the ball and drove Kofous and Faried clogged the lane. Then when he was taken out he kept being put in with some random line ups like every one else. Tonight the roster made no sense. Just a revolving door of inadequacy and Karl sticking with the worst of it for long periods of time.

                Again he didn’t play great, or even good. Average, but not really his fault. Not really anyone’s fault they played bad tonight, except Karl. Kofous was given time to work with the most different line ups tonight and he was awful in every one of them. Outside of him, Karl is to blame for everyone’s night. McGee shined in spite of Karl as well.

              • Ackdog

                fair call goog miester

          • GIANLUCA

            GALLINARI STATS :
            Points vs <400 team : 12.0 ppg
            Points vs 400 – 600 team : 17.3 ppg
            Points vs +600 team : 17.0 ppg

        • will

          dont agree w/ point about Koufos given advanced stats that say hes our best player. but I would love to see either Koufos or McGee actually get starting minutes and see what happens. Regardless, Mozgov should get 0 minutes.

      • Guy

        I’m open to a trade but for whom?? Who’s on the market that’s any better?? I don’t think that anybody on this team is untouchable but if you’re going to start making trades it’s got to be for the right people and you better have a plan.

  • mike

    man this is a whinny crew. Take a look at the hollinger rankings. This team is doing fine. It is quite likely that all 3 of their best (or at least most important to their offense) players have played significantly below their likely production level for the year. Clippers and OKC are essentially better versions of themselves with better D (athletic, fast paced with better BEST players and shooting). The defense is where Karl needs to make adjustments. Not sure he will, but they are doing fine unless you can take in a guy like a Stan Van gundy.

    This team IS NOT capable of winning a championship outside of an extreme injury run from 4-5 teams in their way. Stop acting like you expect them to be a top 3 team. They are a top 5-10 type team no better no worse. That gets you a 4-7 seed in the west this year.

    • Ban Johnson

      well, if the Nuggets aren’t really a contender, then why play the old man (Miller) so much? Why limit McGee’s minutes so much? Let the young guys learn and improve for when the Nuggets will be a contender.

      Hollinger’s rankings do not trump wins and losses. If the win/loss record is substantially poorer than other metrics suggest it should be, that’s on the coaching, no?

    • Ackdog

      Mike, as a fan I care about wins and losses. When a team loses becuase the other team is better that’s okay. When a team loses becuase the coach is trying to prove a point rather than win a game I can’t stomach that. The coach lost thjis game plain and simple. He made every wrong move he could. Conley is one of the fastest guards in the league but wehere was Lawson. Faried had 5 fouls and couldn’t protect the rim where was McGee. Gallo was horrible on offense but where was Hamilton. Bad coaching all around that much was clear. The Nuggets are better than thier record but every game counts and this one was gettable. All us whinny fans want is for the coach to put his giant sized EGO a chance and give the team the best chance at winning.

      • GK4Prez

        Lawsome was out at the end because he was injured, they were wrapping his ankle in ice on the bench during the 4th quarter.

    • John

      So your saying mediocrity is “acceptable” and we should just be happy it, and not desire or call for changes.

      You do realize the object is to WIN.

      This team is talented. I do expect them to win, and if they don’t win, I do expect them to look like they at least “tried” to win. Then I expect the team to analyze what they are doing wrong, and “change” these things, and “improve” as a team.

      What I don’t expect, is for them to do the same thing repeatedly when it is obviously not working…. and I definitely don’t expect someone who gets paid $10 million+ to shoot baskets, to miss half of his free throws…

  • John

    As expected… no one on the team follows up a good performance… If Joel gives anyone a score above a C- I will flat out accuse him of being a “homer”

    Gallo – Pathetic (C-) sorry Gianluca I don’t care what you say, that was crap.
    Dre – Terrible (D)
    Ty – Made Gallo’s pathetic look good (F-)
    Faried – Looked Weak (C-)
    Kosta – Looked Soft (C-)
    Brewer – Made 1 nice play and surrounded it by 30 bad ones (D)
    Iggy – Horrible (C-)
    Mozgov – Did he even play… I don’t remember. (F-)
    McGee… Ok… I take that back, McGee has a pretty good stat line, and I only saw 3 moronic plays so (A-/B+)

    George Karl should take some notes from Hollins on how to be an actual vs. reactionary coach… “Hey, this lineup isn’t working. I should try something different…. and then win”

    But since this is a “road” game, it doesn’t really count as a loss, right George. Idiot. (D)

  • Kalen

    I was dumbfounded at Karl’s decision to roll with Faried at center to close out the game. I mean, shocked. Speechless. Inserting McGee (who had 10 points, eight boards and five blocks in less than 20 minutes at the time) was such a blatantly obvious move that all you could deduce from that decision was that Karl prefers playing his favorites rather than winning basketball games. Three of the last five Grizzlies’ baskets came at the rim with no contest. And the first thing McGee does when he comes in is block a easy layup at the rim and score a put-back bucket on the other end. Meanwhile, Karl’s favorite player in the world (Andre Miller) is turning the ball over like it’s his job, jogging back on defense and attempting to pass the ball only as a last resort. This game was the epitome of why people are constantly frustrated with Karl. He’s more interested in proving points and playing favorites rather than exploiting matchups and winning basketball games.

    • Ackdog

      Amen Kalen!! Amen

    • John

      While Karl’s coaching has never actually won or lost the Nuggets a game, how many games this season has his coaching made it nearly impossible to win??? At least 5… possibly more.

      Where would we be without his active sabotage of the team… 5th in the West??? Better???

      Gotta hand it to the big Russian in Brooklyn, at least he understands that just making the Playoffs isn’t the Goal.

      Everybody is calling for SVG… but I’m not a huge fan… You think Brian Shaw wants a Head Coaching job??? Young, hungry, good pedigree(3 rings, and an asst. under Phil Jackson)

      • Ackdog

        Well said John. It is obvious to me that a lot of fans are really starting to get frustrated with the way Karl coaches. I wonder how his players feel??

        • John

          I’m sure they love it… Actually, Karl made one sub tonight Ty for Iggy.. and Iggy looked like he wanted to ignore it, until Faried gave him a little tap and said “thats you man…” Iggy just shook his head while he trotted off.

  • DAN

    It’s been said but this lose is on Karl. The boys played hard in a tough spot. But man do we need a coach with half a brain. How would Avery Johnson do?

    • John

      I really like Avery, but he is a micro manager… that might be a little hard on such a young team… It would make them better, if they could keep their egos out of it… but I think McGee’s head would explode within two months. I still say Shaw.

  • googergieger

    SVG would bring defense to this team. He did more with less in Orlando and Howard. Seriously McGee’s ceiling is higher than Howard’s. Shaw would bring a triangle offense that would slow a team down that has troubles in a half court game. SVG knows drive and kick offense, especially when Howard went out with injury.

    • John

      You have said this a few times…

      He didn’t win in Miami in ’04. When he had both Shaq and DWade…
      He didn’t win in Orlando 2009 when he had D12, Rashard and Hedo(when they were good) and Jameer.

      Granted there were injuries in both cases, but the rosters specifically Orlando’s were pretty good, not a bunch of scrubs.

      I’m not saying he isn’t good, or that his teams didn’t advance past the 1st round, even all the way to the Finals…. just that he didn’t do it with less.

      Also, keep in mind every team he has coached has had something we don’t have, a physical dominant big man…

      • googergieger

        Shaq didn’t want to be coached by him. He was a diva. So was Howard honestly. Guy only wanted to be coached so far. But yeah Shaq chased him out of town didn’t he?

        Hedo was/is more inconsistent than Gallo and not even half the defender. Jameer was injured when they went to the finals and never returned to that form since. Lawson has a higher ceiling. McGee could be that dominant big man and SVG had a huge influence on Howard becoming the player he is now. This is a young team that wants to be coached. That needs to be coached. That has a long of young players with a very high ceiling that aren’t going to get much better under a coach that plays his favorites no matter what and tells everyone to “wing it” on offense and defense.

        • John

          I totally agree with them both being Divas. Shaq’s attitude is at least deserved, and I think Reilly had as much to do with him(SVG) leaving as Shaq…

          To be fair… a 5’8″ SVG probably doesn’t have too much to “teach” a 7’2″ Shaq about how to play the game. Considering that at that point in his career he had already done this…

          3× NBA champion (2000, 2001, 2002)
          3× NBA Finals MVP (2000–2002)
          NBA Most Valuable Player (2000)
          10× NBA All-Star (1993–1998, 2000–2003)
          3× NBA All-Star Game MVP (2000)
          2× NBA scoring champion (1995, 2000)
          5× All-NBA First Team (1998, 2000–2003)
          2× All-NBA Second Team (1995, 1999)
          3× All-NBA Third Team (1994, 1996–1997)
          3× All-Defensive Second Team (2000–2001, 2003)
          NBA Rookie of the Year (1993)
          NBA All-Rookie First Team (1993)
          FIBA World Championship MVP (1994)

          • googergieger

            You can always get better firstly. Secondly new team, and new system. Much more Shaq has never been a good defender something which SVG champions above all else. Even so, Shaq has never been one who liked to be coached. Phil had to kiss his ass and baby him. He rode Kobe because Kobe welcomed it. However Shaq has always had an ego he wanted people to play to.

            Anyways that 5’8 SVG turned Dwight into a defensive juggernaut, who clearly had as much if not more to do with that Orlando defense than Dwight did. Who so far on the Lakers has learned coaching does matter.

  • DAN

    I like Shaw too!

  • Trevor

    Why did we sign Andre Miller to a three year deal? Please trade him before the trade deadline. I think Fournier would be able to play at least 15-20 mins of solid play as the backup PG by mid Feburary.

  • googergieger

    Also even though we have a lot of home games coming up, against some pretty good teams all said and done. I mean Clips, Wolves, Jazz, then Lakers on the road on a back to back for us, to start Januray off. We play OKC twice. A much better Golden State. Etc…

    What is everyone expecting out of the month of Januray for us? What is acceptable? More than two over five hundred, right?

  • Jacob

    New rotation with no 2 pg runs
    four- 4

  • Stephen Hernandez

    Javale McGee was our best player tonight and you put him in when the grizzlies already won the game you’re an idiot go McGee and screw Karl

  • CJP32

    A disappointing way to end 2012, but January is very kind to us with 15 of 18 at home, gotta win at least 12 of those home games.

    So far 40% into the season, I would have to say that Ty and Gallo have disappointed the most. Gallo gives you 39 one night, then has a stinker the next, except, its not that surprising actually. Almost every game he has scored 20+, the following game is poor:

    23 then 13, 21 then 15, 20 then 9, 21 then 9, 24 then 14, 28 then 6, 39 then 7. He just cannot string together 3-5 good scoring games in a row.

    If Ty is injured, then bench him, play Evan or even Iggy at the point and give JHam some burn.

    I really hope these guys blow our minds in January, otherwise Masai will be forced to make changes. And Wilson Chandler is not the solution.

    So far CBrew and KK have shown the most improvement over the summer, Faried has regressed slightly, Iggy has looked subpar, McGee is just head scratching, Andre Miller is still looking unfit.

    • Jacob

      Very rational post… Surprising to see that around here lol.

    • Alberto

      Gallo does’t have the brain, after games like against Dallas he believe to be better than Kobe: the greatest player in the world. He is really ridiculous, a player with his potential that waste it because of his stupidity

  • steven

    This is one of those game you just sit and yell at the TV.

    Ty…obviously hurting…Achilles injury for a pg with his speed is devastating. JS coming back can not happen soon enough.

    Which brings us to Miller…every loss we take is squarely on his shoulders. He does not play D, he never penetrates below the free throw line, takes a great number of stupid shots. Every game I read some comments about his veteran leadership…my god we are in trouble if Miller has to play MORE for an injured Lawson.

    McGee…the dude changes the game. I don’t care about the mistakes he makes…he changes the game on D whenever he is in there. I will take more from him and less KK, even though KK plays ok most of the time.

    Gallo…had no legs tonight…not the end of the world.

    AI…not a bad game again.

    Brewer…he is a good guy and plays hard, but despite his 27 points the other night, he is not the answer for us as a shooter.

    JHAM…..dnp..why? Oh I forgot, we don’t really need a scorer on this team…

    EF…he should play more at point.

    Stone…Looking forward to having him back..HE passes well and plays DEFENSE!

    This team is killing me.

  • Alberto

    George Karl rotations tonight was terrible… I would like to know why Miller played so much; I prefere a pathetic Ty in these matches where nuggets need to run, run and run. Karl continued to play with 2 centers when we needed to play a different game. Why Hamilton didn’t play? Why Gallo didin’t play as 4 more minutes?
    Iguodala was fantastic on defense tonight, McGee changed the match (even if he did some bullshits) and Brewer made some important shots. The other player was terrible, I don’t talk about Gallo because it’s irritating to see these difference between a game and another one.

  • Cephus

    Didn’t see the game, I’ll admit that upfront. It looks like Ty is playing hurt and Karl feels there’s no third option at point guard. Given Ty’s career long propensity towards injury and Andre Miller’s age, something’s gotta give. T.’s game is speed and it’s all too clear when he’s not 100%.

    Sorry, not buying into the Stan Van’s the man school of thought. This guy is a prototype assistant coach who wears out his welcome with incessant nagging and harping on details. Phil Jackson is who he is because he knows how to coat the message with zen sugar.

    They both know basketball, but Phil and George know how to not alienate their best players. Shoot ! I only wish there was a time machine to put Doug Moe in and let him head this crew. I grant that George is prone to sticking with his rotations. I think DM would have recognized Ty’s hurt, the regulars are gassed and stuck in the lower half of the bench.

    Hindsight, I know but Doug though biased towards vets, was a lot more prone to every now and then breaking up the flow and letting the rough diamonds on the roster 15 minutes in a game. GK teaches the game as well or better then anyone, largely avoids the blame game that pisses Prima Donna players off. But yes , he will dance with what brought him to the bitter end.

    This game was too close. for too long & though aforementioned factors of injury and fatigue had odds against us breaking through in a road game. GK couldn’t give someone with fresh legs a go. They have to break down walls like Faried did last year to crack the rotation. If San Antonio will sit vets & put kids in on 2nd if back to backs, why not us ? Just a thought.

  • allAround

    We sucked big time and Memphis also.
    It think that it was the worst game I watched this year.

    Usually I speak bad about our D , but today no.
    1. Nuggs need different ways to attack the rim . Our play (when it comes to 5 vs 5 ) is the same and completely predictable the last year or may be two. I could right more about that but we need some more ways to attack.

    2. Nuggs need a Center with some post moves around the rim . Watching Kaman the other day got me frustrated. McGee is one move center ( waiting someone to lob him) while Koufos till now is NO move at all ( only put backs). Karl should fix some plays for them and invest on those otherwise we are going to be much more dependable from 3 or long range shooting.

    3.I still can not understand why Karl is not taking advantage of Gallo’s height . When Gallo is playing as 3 he should try to post up his opponent with his size. I am trying to remember when it was the last time that this happened.

    4. happy new year

  • al68

    Horrible game we played at their pace all the time. Our main problem today and may be the entire season is the pg position. Miller has no physical playing for minutes or gives GK, not giving a fast get the games. Lawson if not 100% physically makes no difference.

    GK although it seems much better than the average coach is being very stubborn with the use of Miller.

    Nor do I understand how you defend a player Mcgee both that 90% of the time is wrong located in attack and in defense, jump to block shots that never came and disturbs the defensive rebound does not make a good defensive help. It is the paradigm of player who makes a team worse, at least KK knows it is not a star and just doing what he knows. For me our defense is better this year mainly because of its presence in the paint, today we saw that made ​​the 6th and Gay just to party with baskets inside the paint.

    Hopefully we hired an intelligent player and professional like Calderon to bring order and teach basketball Mcgee (if possible), Faried and Lawson.
    The problem is that USA basketball players now do not spend 4 years in college learning how it was before and the players develop their physical side only and do not develop the understanding of the game and the fundamentals of team play, so when in the Olympics face teams like Spain mio, which is physically and well below the 1×1 when they play as a team not win by small details.
    I think GK thinks like and likes people who understand the game takes so much time to Miller.

  • Trip

    Why is Moz on the trade block? His status is so low right now we will not get much for him. They need to put Koufas on the block and shop him around while he is playing some pretty decent basketball. He is much more valuable in what we can get back, and their salaries (this year at least/i dont know how much time is left on their contracts) are very similar so it doesnt look like dumping a huge unused contract. We get rid of KK and chandler and get something good in return, start mcGee and use Mozzie as the back up, the reason he cant figure out the flow of the offense is because he plays 5 minutes every 3 to 4 games how should he be expected to do any better?

  • http://yahoo.com prospector

    I will repeat my mantras: TRADE MILLER NOW!!!! DITCH CHANDLER!!
    Why was 6′ 8″ Faried playing center with foul trouble?? Karl is a complete idiot.. When a guy gets in foul trouble you try to hide on defense… Not have him bang against Gasol…. Karl should have rotated Mcgee/KK / and Mozzy at center… Then rotate Faried/GALLO/ & AR at power forward… But a two guard lineup w/faried (w/foul trouble) at center is insane…. Why is JHAM, EVAN, and AR even on the team for???? Miller is a punk with no heart… He is lazy, and plays at about 50% speed.. Which is why he always plays 82 games, he doesn’t play hard enough to ever get hurt… JHAM can shoot and rebound but he is not allowed to play… 22 minutes for McgEE??? Are you kiding me??? And people when slow poke Chandler comes back, it’s going to get alot worse… You are going to see your two guard lineup in crunch time w/ faried and Mcgee on the bench.. With chandler limping around, and Hastings on TV complaining on the lack of rebounding.. Chandler looked good with Felton… Felton’s nastyness I think may have brought out a more agressive Chandler, but since Felton was ditched for MIller (incredible isn’t it) Chandler has disappeared… Miller and Chandler are pulling this team down…. It is clear that Karl can’t handle a team with alot of toy’s…. MASAI plz grow a set.. MAN UP!!!

    • Charliemyboy

      Wow, you’re saying the same things when they beat Memphis 2x, LA on their court and Dallas. Pretty consistant analysis, don’t you think? Relax; let us play through January; if they are playing the same way, intelligent, thoughtful, long-thinking recommendations for change may be in order. Write something that a GM might REALLY read. He won’t consider rants.

      • toluene_hawk

        Yes. Emperor Ujuri reads this blog and the comments from 14 year-olds with no basketball acumen after every game.


  • OriginalJakeSauce

    GK refuses to play offense with a plan in mind, he refuses to use fresh legs, and he refuses to even slow his raging Andre Miller addiction.

    We played as good a game as he l

  • OriginalJakeSauce

    GK refuses to play offense with a plan in mind, he refuses to use fresh legs, and he refuses to even slow his raging Andre Miller addiction.

    We played as good a game as he let us, but when no offense is happening all game and you don’t put the guy who is most likely to get buckets on the floor, you’re hoping for at best over time. GK has got to go.

  • Mark from Charlotte

    I seen the game sunday afternoon on NBA league pass. I do not understand what GK is doing, bad coaching in the fourth quarter. JHam and E94 would have made a different. Why was M34 on the bench in the fourth during crunch time. SIX BLOCK SHOTS IN THE GAME WOW…………………

  • Zorba

    for googergieger: I dont’t think there’s only one person on the blog who hasn’t understood that you hate koufos and have a feeling for McGee…
    Please, realise that your ten million dollars idol usually sucks and stop repeating always the same useless thoughts…
    McGee must prove his value on the floor and not on the blog…

  • googergieger

    And yet plenty of people worship Kofous for mediocrity and ignore all the glaring mistakes and uselessness he often brings to the court. Meanwhile McGee gives you games like last night against a team that has no answer for him on both ends of the court and he still doesn’t get minutes or the respect from people like yourself.

    I don’t hate Kofous, but he shouldn’t get the minutes he is getting. He should get back up minutes at most.

    Seriously how is McGee going to prove his value on the floor if even when he is playing great he gets pulled? Kofous plays bad last night and in the Dallas game and he still gets the minutes! Come on Zorba, explain your asinine comment. What does McGee have to do, to get minutes? To get the opportunity to develop chemistry with our best players so he can close games? What does Kofous have to do in order to stop playing him major minutes so teams with competent centers can have career nights?

    Seriously, wise up.

    • ny nugs fan

      koufos is wooden butterfingers

  • Mark from Charlotte

    Excellent point Googergieger McGee should play more minutes in games.

  • Rob

    Here is a trade that shows -8 wins for the nuggets. Given George Karls at best questionable rotation of players and the fact that he loves Miller despite well below average stat lines night in night out (also to mention the slow pace and the fact Miller might not be able to touch the net) this trade would work an allow 1 year of contracts from the Hawks and the a reshuffle or free agency pick up in the off season.


    Should we as Nuggets fans in fact be talking about not trading players and what might fit, rather talking about a coach who can have an impact?

    Wow George has the most active wins Yippy!!! How many titles? (0) How many final appearances (1) If you want to talk about stats that’s one for a coach of 28 years.

    People used to say Melo and JR were bad defensively (add Billups to that to) can someone remind me why Detroit won with billups leading the floor? hint (DEFENSE) Melo and JR are now above average defenders, yes JR gambles a lot but I am sure another love of Karls (Brewer) gambles a lot as well.

    Oh do I need to say the glove (Gary Payton) one of the best if not the best defensive point guards in NBA history(I know its a big call) but under Karl the Sonics never really lived up to the hype (very good team but had great players that should have succeeded more than 1 finals apperance)

    People have said for years now that the nuggets players are bad defensively. Are they really or do we need to look at a coaching staffs defensive philosophy? How can we get questionable the best on ball and perimeter defensive player (iggy, who is needed in the West coast, thanks Kobe, Durrant) but the team not improve defensively?

    If Karl finishes games with defence then why is miller on the court? Millers idea of defence is “Ill let my guy go by and hope that McGee is there to leave his man to stop my man which then leave his guy free but McGee will save me from looking old and slow”

    My point we don’t need a trade we need a coach who can do more than just win regular season games.
    Jerry Sloan please.

  • Mark from Charlotte

    I like Jerry Sloan as a coach, but this will not happen this year. The Nuggets management will not fire GK this season. Gk will retire before they fire him. I would like to see what Jerry Sloan would do with this roster this season.

  • FstbrkJM

    Random thoughts after I reflect on the Memphis game:

    – This needs to be GK’s last season. His style won’t ever produce a deep run into the playoffs, let alone any championship hopes/dreams. We don’t have a 1/2 court offense to use & we have too many glaring holes on the defensive end. Several names have been kicked around as GK’s replacement but I tend to wonder if Masai is going to grab someone like Mike Budenholzer, defensive guru Ron Adams, or even Brian Shaw.

    – If Ty continues to have foot problems, we’re in big trouble. Miller clearly can’t play at Ty’s pace & it really slows us down. I don’t understand why Masai signed Miller to a 3 year deal & why he didn’t find another PG who could compliment Lawson’s speed/drive & kick style.

    – Much as has been said about GK’s failure to design a play, let alone a good play, after a time-out or the end of a quarter. The answer to failure was seen by all during a 4Q time-out when the cameras zoomed in and found Asst. Coach Melvin Hunt drawing up the play. Now it all makes sense.

    Let’s hope for a good January!

  • Zorba

    I absolutely don’t hate McGee. I just think he hasn’t proved to deserve his ten million contract so far… I really hope he will in the near future but you don’t gain your time in the court by playing well for a couple of games. The coach decides considering the work you’ve done during the season and it seems that kk at the moment deserves being a starter much more than McGee… Yet, I hope for the next games to see McGee starting,so we’ll have a complete view of his potential… and you’ll stop talking about kk…

  • googergieger

    What we’ve seen from Karl is talk about defense and sound fundamentals, and yet when his favorites play deplorable defense and sloppy offense, he still gives him their minutes and when the players he calls raw and bad for their defense, are actually winning him games, he still benches them!

    I mean it is easy to take out McGee when he is playing great, and then when he plays bad, you can point to it and go, “See! That’s what I meant!”. Well guess what Karl and Karl supporters, I can point to a hell of a lot from his favorites that would make McGee’s lapses/mistakes seem like nothing.

  • googergieger

    Also I wonder if they could get tape of Hedo and Howard running the pick and roll and show it to Gallo and McGee. As I think that’d be a pretty hard to defend and easy play to run. On top of which show some tape of how Tim Duncan blocks shots without even jumping to McGee. Something that easy as homework or whatever you want to call it, could help both of those guys and the team out a lot I reckon.