The Nuggets came up with a series of big plays late in regulation to tie the game, but couldn’t get it done in the extra period, falling to Dallas 108-105.
|Kenneth Faried, SF 34 MIN | 5-8 FG | 1-2 FT | 10 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 11 PTS | -3
Faried was mostly solid tonight, but not particularly special. He rebounded well and made a few buckets. But he wasn’t making the sort of energy plays he’s known for.
|Kosta Koufos, C 19 MIN | 3-9 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 6 PTS | -10
As the usual leader of the Koufos bandwagon, I found this game hard to watch. Kosta attempted too many hook shots over the defense, often when there seemed to be better shots available for teammates. He gave up two offensive rebounds to Chris Kaman, while grabbing only two defensive rebounds himself.
|Andre Miller, PG 38 MIN | 2-12 FG | 3-4 FT | 1 REB | 7 AST | 3 STL | 0 BLK | 4 TO | 8 PTS | -6
The Mavericks played physical defense on Andre Miller from start to finish, and he was clearly frustrated by the lack of foul calls. He made a few good passes, but also called his own number too often in a game where he was coming up empty on most trips inside. He had a huge steal at the end of regulation that set up Brewer’s tying bucket, and put in pretty good defensive effort for much of the game, but still left shooters open outside too often.
|Wilson Chandler, SG 34 MIN | 8-15 FG | 0-0 FT | 9 REB | 2 AST | 3 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 18 PTS | -4
Chandler played only nine minutes in the first half due to foul trouble, but shot the ball extremely well and was fairly good defensively on Dirk. He struggled on both ends during Dallas’ 15-0 run early in the third quarter, and was good again for the rest of the game. Two successive defensive stops against Dirk in the last two minutes of regulation gave the Nuggets a chance to tie and take the lead.
|Andre Iguodala, SG 43 MIN | 7-15 FG | 1-3 FT | 5 REB | 6 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 5 TO | 18 PTS | -3
Iguodala had a great first half, making good play after good play. He shot 3-4 on three pointers, passed the ball well, went coast to coast for a layup, and had several rebounds. He was much worse in the second half, taking ill-advised shots and turning the ball over.
|Anthony Randolph, PF 4 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 0 PTS | -2
I counted three offensive boards Anthony Randolph gave up in his four minute stint. He played one good defensive possession against Dirk, and then forgot to look for the rebound, which came out almost to where he’d been standing. He also coughed the ball up right into the hands of Shawn Marion.
|Corey Brewer, SF 37 MIN | 6-20 FG | 4-5 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 5 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 18 PTS | -1
I often find myself wishing I could give Brewer multiple grades for a game. He created a ton of havoc defensively, including a steal off an inbounds that earned him a pair of free throws and a strip of Dirk late in the fourth quarter that gave the Nuggets a late lead. But on the very next possession, he cheated way off of Mike James, who hit the go ahead three. He took an absurd number of shots and made very few of them, but he had the tying basket at the end of regulation. He even forced Dirk into a few missed shots, but then committed a bailout foul with the shot clock winding down in overtime. The good slightly outweighed the bad tonight.
|JaVale McGee, C 28 MIN | 5-6 FG | 1-1 FT | 9 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 4 BLK | 2 TO | 11 PTS | +9
With Kosta Koufos struggling, it was important for JaVale to show up with disciplined energy. He did that for a lot of regulation, creating extra possessions with offensive rebounding and erasing Dallas points by blocking or altering shots. He lost an entire letter grade at the start of overtime, after giving up two offensive rebounds on the same play.
|Ty Lawson, PG 19 MIN | 5-7 FG | 3-4 FT | 2 REB | 3 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 13 PTS | +4
The biggest positive for the Nuggets this game is that Ty Lawson looked fantastic in limited minutes. He deferred quite a bit to Andre Miller in his first few minutes, but eventually started making plays. He was moving well, getting the shots he wanted, and made almost all of them.
|Evan Fournier, SG 8 MIN | 0-1 FG | 2-2 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 2 PTS | +1
With Ty Lawson back, Fournier saw reduced minutes and reduced responsibilities. He still found a way to contribute, grabbing a few rebounds in traffic and creating free throws for himself and for Brewer.
Coach Karl had a difficult job tonight, juggling lineups due to foul trouble and poor play. He gets credit for recognizing McGee’s effectiveness and Koufos’ ineffectiveness tonight. But there were a couple of head-scratching decisions, including having Lawson, Miller, and Fournier on the floor together. With multiple players frustrated by the officiating, I would have liked to see the coach take a technical, and then help the players refocus on playing the game.