Rapid Reaction: Denver Nuggets 111, Portland Trailblazers 109

Denver Nuggets 111 Final

Recap | Box Score

109 Portland Trail Blazers
Kenneth Faried, SF 26 MIN | 5-12 FG | 0-0 FT | 8 REB | 4 AST | 4 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 10 PTS | -8

Faried had a great energy throughout the game but couldn’t really concentrate it properly. He was a bit wild and inconsistent and had trouble defending Aldridge. He did have a few nice assists, which is something you love to see from him (and would like to see more often).

Kosta Koufos, C 23 MIN | 5-7 FG | 1-2 FT | 8 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 0 TO | 11 PTS | +1

Koufos could have been better. He was solid, but there were many where he missed easy putbacks and other opportunities that would have helped his team out in the long run.

Ty Lawson, PG 37 MIN | 12-22 FG | 6-9 FT | 2 REB | 6 AST | 2 STL | 1 BLK | 2 TO | 30 PTS | +4

Lawson will finish out the month of February averaging 23 points and nine assists per game. It has been the best month of his career thus far. It’s also fitting he finishes February in this fashion — essentially leading the Nuggets to a road victory in one of the toughest arenas in the NBA. His confidence right now is through the roof. He was even talking trash to Wesley Mathews at the end of the game, which is something you rarely see from him.

Wilson Chandler, SG 28 MIN | 3-10 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 7 PTS | -3

Not sure I understand Chandler at this point, or any point throughout his tenure with the Nuggets. He’s right up there with Corey Brewer in terms of inconsistency. One night he pours in 23 against the Lakers, the next he manages only seven. His offense can be difficult to grasp as a fan. He has only a select few moves he utilizes and they often come at arbitrary points throughout the game. It would be nice to see him move better without the ball too.

Andre Iguodala, SG 43 MIN | 11-20 FG | 5-10 FT | 7 REB | 8 AST | 5 STL | 1 BLK | 5 TO | 29 PTS | 0

Yep, this was Iguodala’s best game as a Nugget — hands down. His stats were insane. Like Lawson, he was playing with a supreme level of confidence this game. He was just on a totally different level. All that said, his free throw shooting is something else. He was bricking them harder than Dwight Howard. Not sure what’s going on there but it’s kinda ridiculous, to be honest.

Anthony Randolph, PF 16 MIN | 2-5 FG | 3-6 FT | 4 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 7 PTS | +4

I can’t knock Randolph too hard. The guy was really trying out there. You can tell, he’s super talented. He had several shots than I don’t think any Nugget forward could make other than him. But he also thought he was Magic Johnson kickstarting the fastbreak offense more than once, which he should never do… ever. Overall, he was a little out of control but nothing too bad. A solid outing for a guy who’s been riding pine most of the year.

Corey Brewer, SF 27 MIN | 3-5 FG | 2-2 FT | 4 REB | 1 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 8 PTS | +6

Brewer started off the game with a bang, then disappeared almost entirely. I don’t even remember him in the second half, yet he finished with 28 minutes. That’s never a good sign. He didn’t do anything wrong, but he also didn’t do too much right.

JaVale McGee, C 17 MIN | 2-3 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 3 BLK | 1 TO | 4 PTS | +9

McGee was pretty impressive in the first half… then he got in foul trouble. He didn’t see any time in the fourth, which was a bit suspect. Had he kept playing, he might very well have ended up with five-plus blocks… and five-plus fouls.

Andre Miller, PG 22 MIN | 2-3 FG | 1-2 FT | 4 REB | 10 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 4 TO | 5 PTS | -3

As always, it’s tough to hand out a grade here. Miller had 10 assists in only 22 minutes, but he also turned the ball over four times and played half-assed defense most of the night. At one point Damian Lillard pretty much just waltzed from the top of the arc all the way to the rim, with Miller doing absolutely nothing to try and stop him. Don’t get me wrong, he had some incredible alley oops and a clutch late-game basket, but he also spent a lot of his time turning the ball over and choosing to play only when he decided he wanted to.

George Karl

I liked what I saw out of Karl. He was yelling. That’s good. He needs to yell more. He’s too passive most of the time. I think I even saw a few curse words murmured as the camera zoomed in on his face. That passion rubbed off on his team. It was clear. This was a totally different Nuggets team on the road. They were playing like they do at home. Yes, they could have easily lost… but they didn’t. That’s all that matters. He did play too much small ball, overused Chandler at the power forward position and let Miller play defense on the last possession of the game which is insulting to nearly all living things. Other than that, the Nuggets were ready to play and got a much-needed road win. That’s all that matters.

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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)

  • dynamo.joe

    Holy shit! Justin Bieber is HUGE!

    What’s his problem with Andre Miller, tho?

    • http://espn herpderpnuggets

      i know right? act like youve posterized a 6 1 guard before son

    • Ryan

      If McGee does that, he gets a tech, guaranteed…

  • http://twitter.com/xantoniooo808x D3Ntilthe3ND

    Corey Brewer needs to stop gambling, for real, almost lost after Lillard made that 3.

    Good win, though. Just hope GK doesn’t go back to those awful lineups when Gallo comes back. WC much better @ 3 & Randolph needs minutes.

    • SmokinNugs

      Agreed. Loving that AR15 is getting minutes, would also love to see him get some more.

  • Emmanuel Thunderbolt

    Crouching Ty, Hidden Lawson

  • Bobby

    The free throw shooting will be the downfall of this team. If we shot 75% we would be unstoppable. Lack of star doesn’t bother since Ty is growing into one, but the charity stripe scares me.

    • Paul

      Agreed, and it should be one of those easily correctable things especially for ”professionals”

      • heykyleinsf

        This will wind up killing them in the playoffs if they don’t fix it and turn it around quick. Not to mention.. teams will foul the hell out of us… and take away our game in the paint.

        Second worst FT percentage in the NBA.

        I loved this win..

        but being so atrocious at the charity stripe is beyond frustrating.

  • Douglas L.

    Same story, different day. Andre Miller is an idiot, and George Karl is a bigger idiot for playing him so much. Just a broken record with this team.

    • magster

      We won and Andre Miller made a huge shot in the last minute.

      Turn that frown upside down…..

      • heykyleinsf


        I am getting a little tired of the day in day out
        trashing of Miller.

        Some days it’s warranted…

        Every day..

        Come on.. quit being ridiculous.

        • Ryan

          He did a lot of good things, but he also did a lot of typical Miller things, like get in the way of Anthony Randolph when Randolph was about to go for a block on a Portland fast break… If we want to complain, it should be about Karl putting Chandler on Aldridge, something no sane coach in the league would do…

  • Mac

    Iggy and Ty carried the team on offense. Good clutch scoring by Ty. Would’ve liked to see javale more, but koufos had a good game. Really like the minutes Randolph got.

  • googergieger

    Was going to go on a long Karl rant if we lost this one. But we just won in a place we never win at. Despite some really horrible officiating as well. Needed this one to stay close to the Grizz who beat the Mavs tonight. Though to be fair Mavs were about to blow them out in the first half but refs kept them in it. Don’t think we’ll win on friday versus OKC. The way the refs have treated us against the Lakers and Blazers, OKC is a great enough team that when the refs go all out they are almost unbeable. We did beat them here last time despite the refs giving Westbrook and Durant more free throws than our entire team but still. Don’t know if we can do that again. Will say this though, am proud of the fight in our guys. And am really proud of Ty realizing he is and playing like an elite point guard.

    • http://twitter.com/xantoniooo808x D3Ntilthe3ND

      inb4 Theo whines..

      • theo

        Yeah, I went a little overboard last time.

        Just very ticked at getting dogged with the troll label repeatedly since I started posting here by some guy that thinks he runs the site. Not going to take that from anybody.

        Was under the assumption this was a public forum for Nugs fans. Didn’t realize I was pledging Phi Beta Nugga including an initiation/hazing process. Let me guess, googergeiger is the pledge captain. Step one is buying into some predetermined POV. What comes next? Learning the secret handshakes? The whole ‘troll’ thing here is laughable.

        Why not just stick to the Nugs/NBA and leave the troll pejorative out of the mix? Anybody can throw labels around in place of a smart take. Why go there?

        • http://twitter.com/xantoniooo808x D3Ntilthe3ND

          I mean, there’s a difference between hazing & you know, words…

          To say him calling you a troll is akin to hazing is a little out there… lol. Just chill.

          • theo

            No, not at all. The guy’s been jerking me around since I got involved here about a month ago. Again, I’m not gonna take that from anybody. His takes are on the lower end of the scale here in my small sample so far. Why would I put up with some dude that thinks he’s the moderator here? If the actual site moderator doesn’t want my takes, he can take me off. Otherwise, stop the troll comments and try to reply with intelligent takes.

        • googergieger

          I called you a possible troll because you kept trying to have arguments nobody brought up while being derogatory towards the Nuggets.

          You kept saying this team wasn’t a possible contender because it didn’t have the talent to be one, despite literally no one on this site arguing or even bringing up anything to warrant such a thing being said. Then the first time you posted on this site when I replied to one of your points you replied with what was the equivalent of a “tldr” reply.

          Stop playing the victim and stop having delayed reactions maybe? You went out of your way to “insult” me last go around. I didn’t bite because I’m of the, “an insult if only an insult if one gets insulted” camp. Might want to do a bit of that yourself as well, sport.

          Now back to basketball.

          • theo

            Yeah, back to basketball.

    • Ackdog

      Don’t write these guys off against OKC. One of their problems in the past has been Ty against Westbrook. This road win with Ty’s play over the last 9 games may be enough to propell them to a win.

      By the way I’m putting Ty up for Western Conference player of the month!

      • Brazil

        I expect the Nuggets to take care of the Thunder at home. Despite how good the thunder is the nuggets have been able to exploit their weaknesses fairly well over the past couple of seasons and quite frankly we have a deeper bench to play our game. yeah thunder have Durant and Westbrook but if you make one of them a non-factor they’re are beatable. the heat proved that in the finals last year. I’d like to see them square off in the playoffs this year.

  • Fraser

    Awesome games from Ty and Iggy, without them we don’t even get close today!

    Here’s another thought on Andre Miller and his clutch time. So today he had a great play where he made a post layup in clutch time and it undoubtedly helped us… But on the next possession he fell asleep and gave Wes Matthews a wide open look from deep.

    I know GK keeps him in there because he likes to have 2 decision makers in big time situations, but has that now become redundant with Ty playing better and Iggy now fully integrated into the team. Surely we don’t need 3 decision makers on the floor offensively. I think Dre’s effectiveness in clutch is becoming less pronounced now that Iggy and Ty can handle it themselves- and if Dre stays off the floor then we don’t have nearly as many lapses on the defensive end, giving up easy baskets right back.

  • theo

    Road swag and system win. Got destroyed by 21 from 3 and couldn’t make a free throw all night and still pulled it out with the attack the rim/points in the paint approach.

    If we weren’t at the bottom of the league in free throw shooting and perimeter shooting we’d be blowing teams out every night. That’s a talent issue.

    • http://twitter.com/xantoniooo808x D3Ntilthe3ND

      If you’re gonna call out the FT’s as a reason for losses & close wins, you also need to admit that a majority of close games, if not all, are deeply affected by GK’s lineups.

      We’ve lost so many games due to GK’s lineups. Yet, you support him every game & are quick to chastise the players even though they’re the ones out there bustin their asses.

      Obviously they need to work on the FT’s, mainly Iggy if he’s going to be handling the ball late & going to the line 10+ times a game, but the blind support of Karl gets really old…

      • theo

        I’m not defending Karl. Fire Karl tomorrow.

        I’m pointing out the real reason we aren’t contenders. We can’t shoot. Let me repeat, we can’t shoot. If you haven’t grasped that fact by now, well, I don’t know how to respond.

        We’re the second to the worst free throw shooting team in the league and at the bottom of perimeter and 3 point shooting. Do you watch the games. Follow the stats?

        Karl is the devil, no doubt, but important to give the devil his due. The system he’s running is all about attacking the rim and running other teams into the ground. It only works if you have players that can take advantage of the foul shots they get by getting into the paint consistently and guys that can make shots from 3 because they’re wide open due to the penetration. We don’t have those players.

        We’ve lost about 8 games this year–at a minimum–due to terrible free throw and perimeter shooting. That’s not about Karl. That’s a talent issue.

        Yeah, I’m a troll. Throw pejoratives around instead of making an intelligent take.

        • http://twitter.com/xantoniooo808x D3Ntilthe3ND

          We may have lost 8 games due to FT’s ( I doubt it’s that many btw ), but we’ve lost AT LEAST 10 games because of lineups. That’s small ball, that’s leaving brewer in (Miami, Ray Allen) that’s not having a center to guard the post, that’s playing Andre Miller 100 minutes in Boston, all kinds of stuff. The Clippers shoot a shade better than us from the line, yet they’re 3rd in the West, the Hawks are right there with them…. So there goes your argument…. But there’s not much arguing that Karl’s lineups cost us game after game & even when we win, it’s slightly rather than easily…

          Yeah, I’m gonna call you a troll. Throw around presumptions that I’ll throw pejoratives around instead of making an intelligent take.

          Sometimes, people would rather not take the time to reply to something that really holds no substance. Just because they don’t doesn’t mean you’re right..

          • theo

            I actually said we lost at least 8 games this year due to worst in the league free throw shooting and perimeter shooting including 3 point shots. You left out the bad perimeter and 3 point shooting in your take. Again, we’ve lost at least 8 games due to really bad shooting from all those places.

            Yeah, you may be right that Karl has cost us ten games. I realize that’s the house take here, but even you have to admit that’s a very subjective approach.

            You can quote me all the times you think Karl should have played bigs at the end, smalls at the beginning, etc. You might be right about all of that, but that’s a subjective take.

            But shooting stats don’t lie. Nothing subjective about them. If we had a team that was even decent at making free throws, mid range perimeter shots, and 3’s, we’d be an elite team in the conversation. It really is that simple.

            • http://twitter.com/xantoniooo808x D3Ntilthe3ND

              If shooting stats don’t lie, then why are the New Orleans Hornets Top 10 in both 3 PT & FT%? Sacramento Top 15? Dallas Top 10? By your logic, those 3 teams are more of a contender than the Nuggets…

              Stop buying into stats so much. Use your eyes, open your mind. Numbers don’t mean a thing at the end of the day, only one that matters is the win column.. & the Nuggets are pretty stable in that regard. Would be better if Karl would wake up. You know why we don’t win in the playoffs? Cause 3 pt & FT %? NO. Because not even the win column means a thing come playoff time. It’s 1 game seasons every night.

              You can’t sit there & bash the players & don’t try & say you haven’t done it, cause you have.

              Bottom line is, the players aren’t the problem… it’s the coaches job to implement them correctly. Do I hate the mistakes that guys like Miller, Brewer, & all of them make? Yeah, but it’s up to George to fix it, & sit them when they make a mistake & not favor players over others.

              THAT’S why GK as head coach isn’t popular around here. You make it sound as if we have this conspiracy to get George Karl fired because we all hate UNC or something. No, not at all, we’re just being real.

              • Ryan

                Yes, exactly… Karl had Wilson Chandler trying to guard Aldridge… seriously. Only reason the game didn’t go into overtime is because Aldridge missed an easy shot. I would have liked to see McGee on Aldridge on that possession, would have been a good way to improve his confidence and reward him for playing more fundamentally sound lately. No way Aldridge gets that easy of a look if he’s worried about McGee’s length. To say Karl’s “system” won the game by putting an undersized player on one of the best PFs in the game and getting lucky that he missed is ridiculous

              • theo

                No, by my logic those teams wouldn’t be contenders. They’re lousy teams for a wide variety of reasons that happen to shoot very well from deep and from the free throw line.

                That has nothing to do with the discussion at hand. We were talking about the Nuggets. In particular, what the Nuggets need to do to be contenders. The other teams you mention have a ton of work to do in many areas if they’re going to even make the playoffs in the future. We already have a legit second tier team that makes the playoffs regularly. Let’s stick with the topic. How do the Nugs get the next level?

                We’ve very strong in a lot of areas, but we’re at the bottom of the league in perimeter shooting in general, 3 point shooting more specifically, and free throw shooting too. I guess this is a controversial take here, but what I’m suggesting is that if we were even at the league average in those areas we’d be an elite team.

                I guess this is also a controversial take here, but bad perimeter and free throw shooting isn’t primarily a coaching issue. It’s a player talent issue. If bad shooting isn’t a player talent issue, then players have no responsibility at all for game outcomes. These are professional athletes. Is that what you and some others here want to argue?

                Again, I don’t want to be drawn into a black and white extreme take here that I feel like you and some others are trying to force me into. We have some coaching issues and we have some player issues. Since success in the NBA is always far more predicated on player talent than coaching–more than in any pro or college sport–I always focus first on player talent. If you can make a legit argument that NBA history, conventional or advanced stats, etc. tell us that coaching is the primary issue–like it is in college ball–I’m all ears. Go for it.

                If mentioning that we’re one of the worst perimeter shooting teams in the league, and mentioning that keeps us from being an elite team, qualifies as ‘bashing the players,’ yes, I’m a player basher and a troll and any other pejorative you can come up with.

    • Dubz

      Damn you have a knack for knocking our talent at strange times. This team is 37-22. Is that a talent issue? Is our FT shooting a massive problem? Absolutely. But it can be fixed. Iggy’s stroke obviously needs to be reconstructed, he puts way to high an arc on his FTs. This team does not have a talent issue.. Sorry

      • theo

        Dream on.

        • Dubz

          You dream on buddy. GK is obviously willing to sacrifice 3 pt and FT % for guys who are good athletes and can run all day. A little bit of defense sprinkled in can always help. Why do you think Brewer plays 20+ mins a night and Hamilton plays none? It’s because Brewer fits the overall scheme Karl likes, and he’s willing to look away when Brewer shoots horrid percentages from the FT line and 3 point land. We could get a guy like Reddick, but his defense is horrible and I’m not sure if he can run with the team. You just have to sacrifice certain things for others. If I were the coach I’d have different priorities, but I’m not so the team doesn’t. Every team has weaknesses, at least we don’t shoot a lot of 3’s and we take enough FT’s due to our style of play that our percentage is made up for by quantity. Instead of questioning people’s intelligence, try making a non simple minded argument yourself. I’d love to hear it.

        • Mark

          Gotta agree with Dubz. This team has talent. Enough to win the championship? Of course not. But If we had better free throw shooting – which isn’t generally considered a talent issue – we’d have at least 4-5 more wins and we’d be in 2nd or 3rd place in the west.

        • Ryan

          I like how theo whines about being called a troll, then leaves troll-ish comments like “dream on”. That’s not a response, that’s just designed to incite the previous poster. Everyone can express their opinion here. Some people think the Nuggets have plenty of talent, some people don’t, but at least discuss the issue in an intelligent manner…

          • theo

            I’ve been discussing things that way since I got here. Little evidence that the Nugs have the talent to compete for a championship. Nobody, other than some hard core Nugs fans here operating on hope and emotion think we do. We’re all fans, and it’s mostly hope and emotion, I get that, but I’d be glad to have you or anybody else here break down how the current Nugs talent matches up with any team that has won a championship or even been a contender in the NBA. Use conventional or advanced stats.

            The onus of proof isn’t on me. It’s on you and folks like you that think we have the talent right now to win a championship. We don’t. NBA history and conventional and advanced stats make that clear. Again, the burden of proof rests with you and the people that think this team has contending talent at this point.

    • Ackdog

      That’s lack of talent more like it. Not saying this group is talented but imagine if we had a +42-43% jump shooter. How lethal would this team be?? The free throw shooting is a worry as well.

      Anyone questioning why Miller is on the floor at the end of close games on this team doesn’t know basketball. He is the teams best low post option(ask JJ Hickson). He is also the best free throw shooter on the team. He also has the stones to take the game into his own hands which until the last couple of months Gallo nor Ty wanted to do.

      By the way Ty is the Nuggets most important player. No offense to Gallo!

      • ryanvdonk

        dre is also the team’s worst defender and outside shooter…and he and ty have little chemistry on offense, as ty is mediocre without the ball and dre is not a threat to hit an open shot.

        • Ryan

          Yup. Which is why GK has them on the court at the same time at the end of the game… makes no sense…

          • Ackdog

            I guess the qustion is who would you have on the court at the end of close games if everyone was healthy???

            • googergieger

              Ty, Gallo, and Iggy always. A center always. Then it depends on who the other team is playing at the four. Sometimes you can go with Chandler and sometimes Faried. I mean really it all depends on who the team you are playing is and the foul situation and who has it going that night or not. Ideally there shouldn’t be a set closing line up. Outside of Ty, Gallo, and Iggy. Our two best offensive guys and our two best defensive guys. Then the rest is all about match ups. Miller is going to be bad defensively and give us no spacing on offense. So for the most part there shouldn’t be a reason he is out there to close games.

            • Ryan

              Ty, AI9, Gallo, Chandler, and McGee…

    • magster

      That’s a brain issue.

      I don’t get why Iggy can’t hit a FT. I was mad when he didn’t get an and one on that crazy lay-up at first, and then I was like “oh well, he wouldn’t have made it anyways.”

  • tanium

    Great win, Ty and Iggy got us through it. What makes me like this team so much is you can tell they all enjoy playing together. I know I’m echoing everyone else when I say Miller needs less minutes. Don’t get me wrong, he had a clutch bucket with about a minute to go but its hard seeing him play so lackadaisically when he comes into the game. He must have had 4 turnovers when he first came in the game. I just wish Karl’s love affair with him would end.

  • Dubz

    THIS is how Iguodala is supposed to play. I think he knew this team has needed a 3 point shooter and he tried to fulfill a role he’s not meant to. His game starts by driving to the hoop which eventually leads to open jump shots. Lately he’s been taking it to the hole with authority which has paid dividends for the rest of his game. Boy it’s fun to watch him on the fast break too, it’s very pretty.
    I also want to say, Brewer is the most perplexing player I’ve ever watched on a nightly basis. He’s either one of the best players on the floor or the very worst player, sometimes all within one play.
    Finally, I thought Chandler did a great job on Aldridge for those final two jump shots. Aldridge got his shots, but Chandler was right in his face. Randolph did fine in limited minutes, but I’d take Chandler as our backup PF any day of the week.
    Ty is playing by far the best ball of his career. So is Gallo. Iggy is getting it together and Chandler is getting healthy. Sounds like a good recipe for success as far as I’m concerned.

    • Nathan

      I kinda look at Brewer as the new JR Smith on this team- without the off-court issues. He can be streaky, but he’s not afraid to shoot the deep ball. He can drive some, and he has a strong work ethic. I think hes a “glue guy” that we need to hang onto. I love watching Brew play.

      Ty on a monster point streak; if he would do this every game, I see no reason why he isn’t an all-star next season.

      • googergieger

        Same reason no Nugget was an all star the season before last when we went into the break as the Number two seed I think?

      • John

        I love Brewer, but he is not remotely close to the type of shooting talent JR was.

        • heykyleinsf

          thank you John..

          I lament that we couldn’t keep swish either..

          and he also grabbed a lot of rebounds..
          whether people want to admit it or not.

          • Mark

            Good to see guys talking nicely about JR on here. I bring him up every now and then, but I quickly get swatted down with the “Yeah but he had head issues” crap. The fact is he was money on an open 3, and knew how to put a dagger in a team that was making a late run. I’d trade George Karl for JR Smith any day.

      • Dubz

        Ya I wasn’t a big JR fan but he could shoot the 3 ball, Brewer can’t. Brewer shoots 4 3’s a game and shoots 30%.. That’s almost sabotage. Iggy isn’t much better but hasn’t been shooting as many 3’s lately which is a very good thing. Brewer definitely is a glue guy which would fit the 20 minutes per mold. Brewer is who he is, he doesn’t shy away from it and I respect the heck out of that. Sometimes we need more finesse, which is why Hamilton should take some of his minutes on certain nights.

        • http://Denverstiffs.com slader

          I think 16 mpg average is optimum for Brewer: 12 when he’s cold and 20 when he’s hot. I love his speed and energy. If we can keep him for cheap, we should. And Randolph looks like a quality insurance big for chump change as well.
          But the 3pt shooting is an issue. Don’t know if we can afford to wait for Fournier to develop, and there’s no minutes for JHam.
          This was a great win and I even saw the 4Q live from here in Milan at 6:30am. The next practices should be dedicated to free throw shooting.

    • John in LA

      JR was awesome…. except when he wasn’t…. which was at least 50% of the time. He could shoot the lights out, right up until he went 0 for 8 from three. Played better D than Miller and Melo, but that is about it….

      Seems like we are the very best team in the league at picking “sometimes” talent as in, “Man they’re good…. sometimes.”

      • Ackdog

        haha very funny!!

  • plattinum

    Iggy is a beast on the defensive end. The Nuggets look so much better on that end when he is on the floor. Brewer plays hard every single game. Even though he takes some boneheaded shots and steal atts., he is still a big part of this Nuggets team. They need to go 5-4 over their last 9 road games and they’ll have their chance for homecourt. Go Nuggets Go!

  • Fed up Nug

    I can’t complain about any win at the Rose Garden so I won’t say anything about tonight.

    Instead I would like to share a couple links with you guys. Patrick over at thenbageek.com runs a truly great advanced stats blog. He’s a Wolves fan but touches on the Nuggets occasionally. Here’s his take on the team at the beginning of the season.


    “The Nuggets are basically a 55-65 win team, and the ten games are inversely correlated with the number of minutes that Corey Brewer and Timofey Mozgov get (with perhaps a side helping of “how many minutes Galinari plays the power forward and bumps Faried out of the rotation”). Arturo has them at 58 wins, and I’m taking the under because of the coaching.”

    Two months later the team is struggling and he posts this.


    “Yes, Denver, your coach thinks that Corey Brewer is more important to winning than either Kosta Koufos or JaVale McGee, and that Gallo, who in 4+ seasons has never once posted average numbers in rebounds or blocks, is the team’s best power forward (and sometimes center, based on lineups I have seen!) after Kenneth Faried.”

    Just for fun here’s his preview for last season.


    “They’re going to be a beast to play against as long as Al Harrington doesn’t get too much burn.”

    L O L

    • Fed up Nug
      • Mark

        Interesting article from back in October before Iggy started playing. Over the last several games it’s been good to see him become the defender/overall player we expected from the beginning.

        • Mark

          Oops, i meant to enter that as a response to Fed up Nug’s post.

    • Tom

      The only thing I agree with is that Brewer is playing too much. His advanced metrics are awful, his plus/minus and on/off are the worst among the rotation players, and he even fails the “eye test”, i.e. he doesn’t even look like he’s playing well. He plays hard and he’s a good athlete, but he’s just not a good player. It would be nice if he were a 15 minute per game guy instead of 24. Give those extra 9 minutes to Koufos and McGee; Koufos has earned it and McGee needs to increase his trade value.

  • Giovanni

    Theo is right..

    In the play offs don’t expect fastbreack like these days…
    And the Nugget on 24 second si another team…
    A don’forget free throws..

    This team is talented?
    Yes but the play offs are another story…

    Perhaps great win at Portland…

  • Finazz

    Ty’s mid range jumper is really the key to his great Feb. knocking them shots down with coincidence means he’s becoming more and more un-guardable every game. Defenders can no longer hang off him to counter his speed but can’t come up because they get beat off the dribble.
    Full credit to Lawson for working on his game and that shot.

  • Aaron

    Wow. . . the sky must be falling with you guys. . .

    If Ty keeps his mid-range game and the floaters coming. . .we will win in the playoffs. period. Our FT shooting needs to improve, yes. But, that can be offset with defense, especially with the Grizz on the horizon. If we play D like we did in the first half last night, it won’t matter how we shoot at the FT line. Also, remember Gallo has been out these last few games which improves both of those percentages markedly.

    Why don’t you guys act like real men and exchange email addresses to go after each other instead of clogging this meta? I’m not sure anyone here is a troll. . . over-negative perhaps. . . but no one is a troll. It’s just that some of us don’t want to read your back and forths because we have nothing to do with it.

    • magster

      Ty beginning to make his mid-range elbow jumper as consistently as a layup is sufficient to open up the paint notwithstanding our sucking at the 3 ball. I would assert that Ty hitting that jumper 5-6 times per game has been key to Denver’s offense going crazy these last 6 to 8 weeks.

  • http://nuggetstime.webs.com jacob

    I don’t think Karl deserves the crap he gets before the game the announcers said that Karl had been sending inspirational messages to ty. I think that if they fired him ty would be crushed

    • dynamo.joe

      They were on shitty tasting valentines candy.

  • http://yahoo.com prospector

    game assessment:

    2 point guard lineup still sucks… Miller and Brewer can not/ will not defend the three ball… Ty had 30, IGGY 29, why on in the hell would you have MILLER on the court during crunch time? He may had hit that shot but his defense was horrible….. Brewer played more than KK, FARIED, AND McGEE….. How is that even possible? I can’t wait to see BREWER gone next season… Miller as well….. It is Karl’s use of these guys which kill me.. When a average player becomes KARL’s FAVORITE, you must remove said player from the team… Chandler had a bad game… SHOCKER, however in his defense he had alot of power forward minutes… Let’s review when CHANDLER plays PF minutes his scoring disappears (unless he is playing a soft team)……Again my issue is with KARL more than Chandler…..

    JHAM still in Siberia, but he did receive a phone call from JR SMITH telling him to hang in there..

    • mcz84

      I agree with all your points, yes Amiller made that last shot but im tired of him thinking hes a Pf and wanting to post up and score, he couldve cost us the game yesterday with some crucial turnovers he had I was so angry with Karl when he put MIller in with about 3 minutes left in the game.Also C Brewer shouldnt be shooting as much as he shoots and he gambles on steals way too much leading to wide open shots for the other team get rid of these 2 this offseason please.I really dont have a problem with Wilson Chandler though

  • Z

    Chandler bad shooting night cool but 2 stops at the end while playing PF which he is not game Nuggets on to the next 1. Iggy scored tonight him and Ty carried the load.

  • Mitch

    Imagine how good this team could be if they could shoot. Defenses pack the lane and the guys have to take the 3’s just to keep the defense honest. I wonder if all the hustle (defense + offense) is taking their legs away. This is where the deep bench could help.

    I thought Miller almost cost us the game in the third quarter with careless turnovers. He truly is an enigma. Sometimes he’s making great team plays, sometimes he’s selfish and lazy, and sometimes he just stinks. I’d really prefer to see him getting less time, especially at the end of games.

  • chronosynclasticinfundibula

    I thought Chandler played outstanding defense. Although he is streaky on offense I would venture to say he is one of the most consistent players on defense and also blocks out and rebounds well. Iggy was most impressive for this game. I think Faried and Miller had poor defensive showings.

    • dynamo.joe

      I am not a big fan of Wilson Chandler’s. That said, last night he was taking good shots. They didn’t go in, but he took the right shots. That’s all I ask of players. Sometimes you don’t get the bounces.

  • Gorillabuddy

    What a sloppy game. So many turnovers, so many missed free throws, so many failed box outs. And we still won, without our(in my opinion) best player. So, I think this is a pretty positive thing overall. If we hadn’t made so many boneheaded mistakes it would’ve been a 25 point blowout.

    Luckily, Ty is starting to come into his own. Now if Iggy and Faried would just follow suit, we’d be in damn good shape.

  • danny

    I like how yelling and cursing are apparently the marks of goo coaching, and Andre Miller gets a C+ grade after essentially winning the game. Makes a lot of sense.

    • danny

      Good coaching* Goo coaching is when you slip a gogurt under an opposing players foot on his way up the court in the fourth quarter, or something? I don’t know.

      • dynamo.joe

        I thought goo coaching is when you are explaining something to I-GOO-dala.

  • Fed up Nug

    Here’s something you guys may find interesting. It’s a list of the 5 most and least clutch shooters in the NBA. We have a guy in both categories. Can you guess who they are? I bet you can heh.


    • Ryan

      The real travesty is that Andre Miller has been allowed to take 11 shots in that type of situation. Any sane coach would not stand for that and Miller would not see the court late in the 4th quarter…

      • Fed up Nug

        Agreed, only Karl would be using the third least clutch guy in the league as his go to closer.

        • Ackdog

          I don’t think Miller is a good fit for this team but………….. Yes Galo has been clutch, but who else???? Who else even wants the shot???? Ty recently yes but not two months ago. Miller is easy to bag because he puts his nuts on the chopping block when others have cowered away. Who else would you like to see taking the shots????? As for me I’ve been screaming for a shooter to take the pressure off of Gallo but the powers that be didn’t make a move. Truth be told Miller is their best post option and Ty is still maturing.

          Karl’s hands are tied. Who would you put out there. At least Dre isn’t afraid to fail(although maybe he should be)

          • Fed up Nug

            It’s pretty easy man, I want to see either Gallo or Ty taking those shots. Ty was garbage in the clutch during his slump but he hit two game winners last year, one in the preseason and has been coming through in late game situations now that he is playing better. We already know Gallo can make a big shot so thats a no brainer. Who I don’t want on the floor in the clutch is our washed up, turnover prone, 36 year old backup point guard who can’t defend a single guy in the whole league. Karl’s hands are hardly tied, he’s just obsessed with playing 2 point guards in the 4th, he been doing it for years, to the detriment o the team as well.

            • Ackdog

              I’m with you on Gallo and Ty of the last month. That’s two out of 5. Who else on the roster would you have out there. Most coaches put thier best low post options and best free throw shoters out there. That Andre Miller sad to say but it is what it is. Would you give the ball to Faries or McGee or Koufus in the post, I didn’t think so. Would you have Iggy or Cbrew in the corner shooting J’s I didn’t think so. I would mind Chandler of Hamilton(doesn’t get minutes) but who else on the roster would you trust?? GK had one option he could trust which was the veteran Andre Miller. He has three options now but he has to be on the floor in offensive situations at the end of games on this team right now. I don’t like either but it is what it is…..

              • Fed up Nug

                I hear you on the whole free throw thing, its been a disaster this season. Here’s the thing though, between Ty, Iggy, and Gallo\Chandler there is just no room for Dre on the floor. When he gets put out there it slides Ty to the 2, making him ineffective while also creating a serious defensive liability. Dre can’t guard anyone and Ty is WAY to small to go up against a real SG. This also moves Gallo to the 4, taking him off the perimeter and putting him in the post with bigger guys that he can’t handle. This also mean moving Faried (already undersized at the 4) to the 5, further exacerbating his problems on defense. Right now, for better or worse, the crunch time line up should be Ty, Iggy, Gallo, Faried and probably Koufos. Unless Ty is injured, Dre just should not be on the floor.

              • Ryan

                If winning: Ty, Iggy, Gallo, Chandler, McGee
                If losing: Ty, Iggy, Gallo, Faried, McGee/Koufos

                I like Chandler’s defense better than Faried’s, but I like Faried’s offensive rebounding ability if we’re trailing. Miller should only be on the court if it’s a situation where the other team needs to foul us, as he is usually a pretty reliable FT shooter (last night notwithstanding)

  • Ackdog

    My wireless keyboard doesn’t like this sight for some reason. We need spell check sorry peoples(not people :))

  • Tom

    I know people don’t like Miller, but advanced metrics say he’s playing pretty well, not just on offense but on defense too. Maybe he fails the eye test, but the stats say he’s been valuable. The best 5-man units according to 82games.com all have Miller in them. Also, didn’t Jeremy write a post a month ago about how good Miller has been when paired with Lawson?

    I think a lot of you guys are pre-committed to disliking Miller because of his age, because you hate GK, and because you hate the two PG lineup.

    • Tom

      Oh, and if you’re curious, the worst 5-man units all have McGee, and usually Brewer, in them (except one which has Faried playing at C, Gallo at PF, and Brewer at SF).

    • Tom

      This link illustrates nicely how important Miller has been and how brutal McGee and Brewer have been:

    • Fed up Nug

      Wages of Wins recently did a nice breakdown on why +/- is not a good stat. He specifically mentions McGee down in the comments.


      • Tom

        Okay, but notice who he’s disagreeing with? Two of the most respected stats guys at the conference! Yes, plus/minus is bad (or noisy) at predicting future performance, but it’s an excellent historical account of how the team played with certain lineups on the floor. Despite how people may feel about Miller, the team has played better with him on the floor, and plus/minus is the rock-solid account of that fact. You could claim that the team would have played even better with somebody else on the floor, but if we look at the other combinations of players, plus/minus tells us that they actually haven’t played as well as the ones with Miller. On the other end of the spectrum, McGee has put up great offensive statistics, but plus/minus tells us that the team has performed worse with him on the court than say Koufos.

        The main reason wagesofwins doesn’t like plus/minus is because you can’t predict future plus/minus results or wins with it very well (because of too much noise, not enough data), and for that reason, it’s not a good way to evaluate the quality of player or how they’ll perform in the future. But if we’re trying to evaluate lineups instead of players, then it’s a very natural statistic to use as it tells us exactly how well different lineups have performed.

        Anyway, even if you don’t like plus/minus or any of the advanced stats that use it, then look at win shares for Andre Miller. His WP48 is .144, and Lawson’s is only .097 (average for a PG is .99). Miller is 5th on the team in WP48 and is 4th for total wins produced. The plain truth is that he’s a good player, he’s been playing well this year no matter which metric you look at, and so there really is no reason for all of the Miller-hate in the comments.

        • thawk

          You forget, we are all basement dwelling fans in our sweatpants. We know a lot more than a guy who has been a professional ball coach for 25+ years. Isn’t it obvious?

  • http://yahoo.com prospector
  • googergieger

    Plus/minus is a good stat except when it isn’t. It is important to always pair up stats with the eye test. And to ideally have a good eye. Plus/minus sometimes does have a lot to do with who is around you and less to do with “you”. Koufos could be high in plus/minus because he is solid. Or because he plays with Gallo, Iggy, Ty, and Faried for most of his minutes. Meaning our two best defenders, our two best offensive players, and the one guy other teams always have on their scouting report. Meanwhile McGee doesn’t really get enough minutes with any sort of line up to really help him out. I mean everyone knows at this point that even when the kid plays good he gets shit minutes.

    I mean the kid essentially isn’t given the chance to really make a dent in his advance stats outside of per. Meanwhile Miller is allowed to play through his bad and is lucky enough to play meaningful minutes with Gallo and Iggy, who are arguably our best guys at doing things that won’t show up on the stat sheet. Chandler could be in that mix when he is 100% and is doing it consistently.

    Again I’ll use this example, last year Matt Bonner was the best Spur according to plus/minus at least heading into the All Star break. Does that mean he was more important than Duncan, Parker, Ginobli, Green, Leonard, Jackson, Diaw, etc? Or that Pop put the right people around him? That the guy did his job? Etc?

    I like using advance stats to argue Iggy’s worth, but I also use the eye test and the fact that this year our defense is better as well.

    • Tom

      Nice story except that the second most used lineup is the starters with McGee instead of Koufos at C. With Koufos, the starters are a +88. With McGee, the starters are a -33. What should you do as coach, put the guy in with the best stats or put the guy in who seems to help you win games?

      Plus/minus won’t tell you how good a player is, but it will tell you how well a lineup has performed. The fact that Bonner led the Spurs in plus/minus means that he was a valuable contributor to a lot of their lineups, and that Popovich used him very well. Oh, and he also happens to be the best shooter on the Spurs and one of the best shooters in the league. McGee’s awful plus/minus means that lineups with him have performed poorly and/or George Karl has used him inappropriately.

      Anyway, my main point is that there are no stats that show that Miller isn’t one of the top 5 or 6 guys on the team. He deserves the minutes he’s getting. He deserves to be in at crunch time because he’s the best passer on the team, the best FT shooter, the best post player, the most experienced. He can’t stay in front of quick guards, but let’s be honest here, most players can’t stay in front of quick guards. Most quick guards can penetrate against anyone at will unless trapped, hedged, or double-teamed. There’s nobody on the team that can guard someone like Tony Parker or Russell Westbrook one-on-one, so there’s little point in getting on Miller’s case for not being able to.

      If I were coach, my crunch time lineup would always include Lawson, Iguodala, Gallinari, and two from the following group: Miller, Chandler, Faried, Koufos. It’s unlikely that I would have one of the centers in at crunch time, because none of them can hit free throws and none of them are shut-down defenders.

  • googergieger

    Really? How many minutes has McGee played with Faried, Ty, Gallo, and Iguodala?

    But really?

    Alright, tonight for instance. OKC closes with Westbrook, Martin, Durant, Ibaka, and Colison or Sefalosha. Who do we close with?

    Ty, Miller, Iguodala, Gallo, and Faried? Maybe Chandler? Meaning you put Ty on Westbrook probably. Then you watch Miller leave Martin wide open? Or do you put Ty on Martin, Iggy on Westbrook, Gallo on Durant, and Miller on a big or Sefalosha and watch him leave him open?

    Meanwhile on the other side of the court. You leave Miller and Iguodala wide open to shoot from beyond the arc. Probably body up Faried to try to stop him from getting the rebound and stick with Chandler. I mean I’m ignoring the other whole undersized at every position part of the problem.

    Again though, and your reply didn’t address this. Miller plays bad, Karl lets him play through it until he plays good. Which good enough. McGee plays good. He isn’t allowed to continue doing it. If he plays bad he gets sat immediately. Where again, Miller is allowed to play through it.