After a slow start that left the Nuggets up only 5 at the half, a combination of Andre Iguoduala and Danilo Gallinari helped the Nuggets blowout the Jazz in Utah. No starter played more than 33 minutes and six of the top eight Nuggets rotation players played under 30 minutes on the first night of a back to back.
|Danilo Gallinari, SF 33 MIN | 6-10 FG | 7-8 FT | 4 REB | 3 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 21 PTS | +8
As I posted on Twitter during the game, I feel like every game I recap is the same story with Gallo. He does virtually nothing in the first half, starts to get going a bit in the third quarter and scores five to seven points in the fourth quarter. It makes it really difficult to grade him at times, but his scoring binge in the second half (16 points) helped the Nuggets finally put the game away.
|Kenneth Faried, SF 26 MIN | 8-10 FG | 3-5 FT | 8 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 2 BLK | 2 TO | 19 PTS | +10
Faried was absolutely dominant tonight, purely based on his energy and effort. He rebounded the ball well, flashed to the right spots in the paint and finished something that he can struggle with at times. In a game where the team didn’t play great in the first half, Faried’s energy helped the Nuggets still get to halftime with a 5 point lead.
|Kosta Koufos, C 24 MIN | 1-2 FG | 0-0 FT | 13 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 0 TO | 2 PTS | +15
Kosta’s work on the glass in a this game was incredibly impressive. In a game against a big team he was able to make Al Jefferson work for every shot and along with Faried helped keep the Jazz off the offensive glass. Thirteen rebounds in 24 minutes is just terrific.
|Andre Miller, PG 27 MIN | 6-12 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 6 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 13 PTS | +18
Miller did what Miller normally does on offense, creating shots for himself and others. While all the shots he took weren’t great he still shot 50 percent from the field and knocked down a three and another long jumper. On the other end he did nothing that really stood out in hurting the Nuggets. The best part of the whole night though was the fact that he only had to play 27 minutes on the first night of a back-to-back.
|Andre Iguodala, SG 32 MIN | 4-10 FG | 1-4 FT | 0 REB | 6 AST | 2 STL | 1 BLK | 3 TO | 10 PTS | +9
The boxscore will not show the impact that Iggy had on the game tonight. He played great minutes at point forward hitting cutter after cutter along the baseline, including Miller and Fournier on back-to-back possessions in the third quarter as the Nuggets pulled away. He had many more passes that turned into missed open shots and others that could be called hockey assists. On defense he was active in the passing lanes and running shooters off the line. It was just a great example of how much Iggy means to this team even with the struggles shooting the ball.
|Anthony Randolph, PF 3 MIN | 0-0 FG | 4-4 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 4 PTS | -1
Incomplete, though he decked Alec Burks on a screen late in the game. It was the right basketball play but one that could lead to bad blood down the road.
|Jordan Hamilton, SF 1 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 0 PTS | -4
|Quincy Miller, SF 1 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 0 PTS | -4
|Corey Brewer, SF 28 MIN | 4-7 FG | 5-6 FT | 3 REB | 2 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 14 PTS | +16
Like Faried, Brewer’s energy in the first half was one of the main reasons that the Nuggets were able to be ahead at the half. The biggest takeaway for me was that Miller refused to settle for the corner threes when he got the chance and instead attacked the basket hard as players closed out on him. He got to the line six times and into the paint a ton. On defense he was able to contain his gambling a bit, and did a great job running the Jazz shooters off the three point line which is an important part of beating them.
|JaVale McGee, C 18 MIN | 1-3 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 2 BLK | 2 TO | 2 PTS | +10
JaVale was a defensive presence, made a bad decision on a 2-on-1 break and threw down an incredible alley-oop dunk. All in all it was a solid day for McGee.
|Timofey Mozgov, C 2 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 0 PTS | -1
|Evan Fournier, SG 21 MIN | 7-9 FG | 3-3 FT | 2 REB | 2 AST | 3 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 18 PTS | -1
Another great night from Fournier, as he did all the little things he needed too. He attacked the basket and finished when he got there, played sound fundamental defense and was in complete control of the game. As Ty Lawson’s availability sits in question the recent play of Fournier is a very encouraging sign.
|Wilson Chandler, SG 25 MIN | 4-10 FG | 1-2 FT | 4 REB | 3 AST | 0 STL | 2 BLK | 0 TO | 10 PTS | +10
Chandler settled for a bit too many jumpers for my liking but he did battle with Paul Millsap and even a bit with Al Jefferson in the post and held his own. It wasn’t a great night but there was nothing all that bad from Chandler either.
Whatever Karl said at halftime worked incredibly. The Nuggets came out and just put the Jazz to bed, a difficult thing to do on the road against a team that is in a fight for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference. More importantly, Karl was able to keep the minutes on most of his rotation players pretty low going into tomorrow’s game against Dallas.
Two Things We Saw
- Urgency: The Nuggets came out in a road game against a team in the fight for the final playoff spot and flat out played harder than the Jazz did. It is an encouraging sign as the Nuggets fight for the three seed with a Clippers team that has played flat recently and a banged up Grizzlies team.
- Encouragement: Evan Fournier played great the other night against the Nets and followed it up with another great effort against the Jazz. He finally seems comfortable after floating through games earlier in the year and with Lawson being hurt, it is a great sign for the Nuggets that Fournier is seemingly able to be counted on.
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