Rapid Reaction: Denver Nuggets 95-Sacramento Kings 109

-Here we are again. Denver led by 13 points in the middle of the second quarter thanks to a combination of Evan Fournier and Airwolf Jan Vesely but ultimately things all fell apart in the third quarter when they were outscored 39-18 by a bad Kings team playing on the second night of a back-to-back.

Randy Foye tried as hard as he good to drag Denver back into the game and the Nuggets even cut the lead to 10 in the fourth quarter before the Kings ran away for good thanks to Isaiah Thomas, DeMarcus Cousins and Rudy Gay to win the game by 14.

Grades are below the jump.

 

Sacramento Kings 109 Final

Recap | Box Score

95 Denver Nuggets
Kenneth Faried, PF 30 MIN | 5-10 FG | 0-0 FT | 6 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 4 TO | 10 PTS | -26

Brian Shaw keeps talking about how he points things out to his players in film and practice that need to be fixed if Denver wants to be successful. It is hard to imagine one of those things isn’t Kenneth Faried needing to stop leading breaks. Again tonight he led three and all three times Denver failed to get points. It almost never works and at some point Faried has to cut it out. On a related note four turnovers for a guy whose entire offensive game for the most part is layups and dunks that is way, way too high.

Wilson Chandler, SF 30 MIN | 2-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 6 PTS | -25

When Ty Lawson went down everyone expected Chandler to step up and provide a boost to keep Denver afloat. Tonight he didn’t score until 10 minutes remained in the game when he hit a three and he never really stopped Rudy Gay. It was just an awful showing from him in general.

J.J. Hickson, C 16 MIN | 0-2 FG | 1-6 FT | 6 REB | 3 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 1 PTS | +1

Hickson stinks. DeMarcus Cousins is a monster. Tonight was as simple as those two facts.

Aaron Brooks, PG 32 MIN | 3-12 FG | 1-2 FT | 2 REB | 8 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 5 TO | 9 PTS | -30

There is a reason Brooks was available for just Jordan Hamilton at the trade deadline. The eight assists were nice but five came in the first quarter. Otherwise he just missed shots and didn’t stop Isaiah Thomas at all.

Randy Foye, SG 34 MIN | 8-18 FG | 5-5 FT | 6 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 0 TO | 27 PTS | -2

Foye did everything he could in the second half to keep Denver in the game. In the fateful third quarter he had 14 of Denver’s 18 points. Ultimately though if your team is too reliant on Randy Foye things like 14 point losses to bad teams will happen.

Jan Vesely, PF 16 MIN | 3-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 0 AST | 3 STL | 2 BLK | 0 TO | 6 PTS | +10

The Airwolf was amazing in his eight minute stint in the second quarter when he recorded two steals, a block, two dunks and a bone crunching screen that led to an open (but missed) three for his team. But just like Randy Foye if your team needs to rely on Jan Vesely having dominant eight minute stretches you aren’t going anywhere.

Quincy Miller, SF 25 MIN | 1-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 5 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 2 BLK | 3 TO | 3 PTS | +14

Miller plays hard but he also makes some really silly decision. Tonight he had a completely stupid turnover without any real pressure on him and missed basically every shot he took. It was rough.

Anthony Randolph, SF 4 MIN | 0-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 0 PTS | +4

Four minutes isn’t enough to grade him on but the fact remains: Anthony Randolph is terrible at basketball. But he plays hard.

Timofey Mozgov, C 19 MIN | 3-15 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 6 PTS | -20

This was one of the worst, if not the worst, game Mozgov played all season. Against many opponents Mozgov is much bigger and can use that size disparity to his advantage. Tonight he ran into one of the few people on the planet that matches his size. And boy did he struggle. He missed chippies, couldn’t contest the Cousins pick-and-pop jumpers. Flat out, he got dominated.

Evan Fournier, SG 36 MIN | 8-11 FG | 7-8 FT | 4 REB | 5 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 3 TO | 27 PTS | +4

Almost all of Fournier’s points came in the first half but his defense in the fourth quarter was a nice thing to see as he caused a jump ball, grabbed a steal and in general made life tough for the Kings. That first half was the game’s highlight for Denver though as Fournier showed the flashes that gets everyone excited about his future. He made threes, got to the foul line and scored in transition. It was really fun to watch.

Brian Shaw

Grading Shaw in this one is tough. While I do think he could have gone to Fournier earlier in the second half there really wasn’t much else for him to do. No big man on the Denver roster seemed capable of stopping Cousins from doing whatever he wanted, no guard on the roster could slow down Thomas and no wing could contain Rudy Gay. His team played hard but his players didn’t execute. At some point the players have to take more of the blame than Shaw. Tonight was one of those nights.

Two Things We Saw

  1. Tonight was a good example of why losing and tanking isn’t a bad thing in the long term. DeMarcus Cousins didn’t even play all that well and completely dominated the game, putting up 27 points, nine rebounds, five assists and five blocks. Even with everyone on the Denver roster healthy the Nuggets have no player as talented as Cousins. The chance to land someone like that, or like almost all of the best 15 or 20 players in the league, is in the top eight or ten picks of a draft. In fact a few weeks ago I listed 20 of the best players I could think of off the top of my head and of those 20 around 15 were top 10 draft picks. Don’t believe me? Try it yourself. That is where the best players in the league come from, especially to small market teams. Denver looks like they will have a chance at finding a guy like that this season.
  2. There isn’t much else to say about this game. With Ty Lawson, Danilo Gallinari and JaVale McGee healthy the Nuggets are a fairly mediocre team to good team. Without them they stink. That was the case tonight. When Wilson Chandler or Randy Foye (take your pick) are your best players expect troubles winning games. Denver played hard tonight though.

Next up: Tuesday, Feb. 25, 7 p.m. (MST) vs. Portland. Going to the game? Save money and get cheap Denver Nuggets tickets here.

  • Sharkboy242

    Losing to a team below you in the standings is really a great way to tank. The Knicks’ next four games look very difficult so I see a much higher lottery chance for Denver in the future.

  • Darian Williams

    good loss

  • Scott

    Decisions…

    • heykyleinsf

      Embiid. He’s 7 ft.. got incrdible hops and gets up and down the court like a PG.. Even got a sweet jumper. He’s a freak. He’s an incredible fit for us. Want Embiid. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m0nxBm5TaI0

      • Scott

        I hope he wears the GoPro in the NBA.

      • LBJ

        Shaw would just sit him on the bench behind JJ….

    • Cory

      Scott you are my man. I want Wiggins. Dudes a beast. I just like him more than the other three. Been a fan of SF over big men, even though Parker is a SF too, just my favorite position in basketball with all the Elite guys at that position. In all seriousness the Defense that Wiggins can bring is super attractive and when he develops and fine tunes his offensive game he will be a monster.

      • Ben

        Pretty sure Wiggins will play SG in the NBA, especially on the Nuggets. Imagine our starting 5…. Lawson/Wiggins/Danilo/Faried/Javale with a bench of Foye, Lights, Fournier, Chandler, Mozzy (maybe Vesely if he can get going)
        I can dig it.

        • alex47666

          I would rather have, ty/fours/wiggs/gallo/mcgee

    • Heisenberg

      I think Embiid would be a lot better if he stayed at Kansas for another year. I love his game, but he’s still really raw.

      Considering the Nuggets roster, if Denver got the #1 pick I would think they’d take Wiggins.

      Of course, this is all assuming the lottery isn’t rigged which I have been suspicious of for a while. I honestly will be done with the NBA if the Lakers win the lottery.

      • Wes

        Or the celtics

    • Erlingur Grétar Einarsson

      As much as I would love to have Jabari in a Nugs uniform next year, we’re more probably gonna end up in the 8-10 range in the draft. I think Aaron Gordon could actually be a solid pick. Good defender, rebounder and has range and an NBA-ready motor and body. Especially if we end up trading Faried and if Fournier continues developing at the 2. That said, any worthwhile SG available should be a mandatory pickup, as that is the most scarce position in the NBA right now.

  • heykyleinsf

    Mozzy was 3-15? Has a Center ever done that poorly before?
    So much for him starting over JJ… that stinks.
    Brooks seemed pretty awful also..
    Didn’t watch this one though

    • Darian Williams

      he has no confidence because he never plays longer than 5 minute periods then gets benched for 20. there’s no doubt he should be starting over JJ no matter his stat line.

    • LBJ

      JJ sucked just as bad as Mozzy. That 1 for 6 from the FT line was pretty awesome.

    • Andrew

      I didn’t watch either, but I think Mozzy just doesn’t match up well with some guys. This was one of them and, hopefully, it is an example of where Geezy will be able to help next year.

  • Richard Pesicka

    I told my wife Evan has 20 points in the first half, Shaw won’t let him start the second half. And he didn’t. I don’t think anyone can complain about Shaw anymore. He wants what the Nuggets need. A lottery pick or two. A man after our own hearts. I’d say a coach after our own hearts but that’s yet to be seen. Maybe if he had players who wanted to play! I know some players I’d send back down to D league.

    • Wes

      We’re in good shape, the guy knows the nba business, we must have patience, his teams will be better than Karl’s teams

      • LBJ

        Shaw has offered zero evidence that he will be a good NBA coach…

        • Wes

          Patience LBJ, all part of the master plan besides if we do the coaching carousel thing, then we should of kept Karl. Shaw now has to develop these young guys when Karl did not. He has NOTHING to work with. TANK CITY BRO!!!

  • Garry

    Appears Hickson is at the top of Shaw’s bad boy list based on the lack of minutes in the last 2 games. Hickson is very hot and cold but always considered him to be giving a good effort. Appears I am wrong.

    • Deeeeeeez Nuhutttttttts

      Hickson is about as bad as a center has ever been in the history of basketball. He’s a PF though, and perhaps he’d be somewhat better if he actually played there.

  • Nugman

    Matt, Faried and JJ push the ball because Shaw told them to. They’re just doing what the coach wants. Another blunder by Shaw? Just like the jump shots he wants. Wonder what would have happened if Evan would’ve started the 2nd half? Everyone wants to blame the players, but does it really look like there’s any real plan on either end of the court? It just looks like no one knows what they’re suppose to be doing. Is that the players fault?

    I just can’t believe that good young men like Faried, Evan and Mozzy don’t want to learn and improve their game and play super hard. They are all quality guys who are open to being taught and have a strong desire to improve. So why aren’t they? Why isn’t the team improving after 55 games? I guess it’s the players fault. The coach couldn’t have anything to do with that, could he?

    • MattRMC

      I think that Shaw probably told them they could take a few dribbles to clear traffic before getting the ball to a guard. At the very least I can’t imagine Shaw seeing film of how awful the Faried and Hickson led breaks have been and not addressing it.

      As for why they haven’t improved why is it all on Shaw? Mozgov has clearly played the best he has ever played this season. Fournier has been ok. Faried in all honesty hasn’t significantly improved any part of his game since he entered the league. I understand the frustration with Shaw but not blaming the players for anything doesn’t seem to make much sense to me. At some point they control their play as much or more than Shaw does.

      • Nugman

        It just doesn’t seem like they have any direction on the court as a team.

        • Cory

          A team this bad talent wise, that doesn’t have many players that can develop their game, that has a coach that doesn’t preach threes and layups and up and down no defense basketball cannot compete with this team. The product is going to be bad, partly due to shaw mostly due to the bad players we have. I love the Nuggets and want a competitive team. But sometimes you have to realize the reality of the players on the team. Faried is dope with his energy and character but no defense. Young guys of course want to learn but when there is no improvement there is dual blame.

          • gimpcom187

            This team was 11th on d in the nba last year without even one average big man defender which is THE most important part of having a top 10 defense.

          • Nugman

            I just think you guys miss the idea of team sports. Successful coaches in any sport are relatively successful even when they don’t have quality players. They simply don’t lose every game by 20 points. I will give you we have a lot of injuries and a weak roster, but anyone who doesn’t give the head coach at least half the blame is in serious denial. Do you really think Pop, Phil, etc would be losing by 20 every game with this group?

            A prime example of Shaw failings is that he “begs” his players for effort. What a joke! A HC Demands effort and there’s no discussion. Do you really think Pop or Phil “beg” their players for effort? I can just see Bill Parcells begging his guys for effort. Forget it! They demand it and they motivate their players to achieve it. Heck, Phil would sit Kobe or MJ if he wasn’t getting the effort. One your HC says he’s begging the players for effort you have to realize there’s no leadership.

  • etlord1

    In terms of tanking, this was probably the best loss. The Knicks’ record is now only one game ahead of Sacramento’s. Knicks lose their next and Sacramento wins their next, Denver’s chances of the first overall pick doubles.

  • Leo

    Fournier was awesome tonight. Actually he was the only good thing about tonight’s game. DOn’t know why he doesn’t at least get an A.

    • Cory

      Love the stat lines of Foye, Fournier and Q.Miller. Development is vital to next year.

  • William Flentje

    Everyone calling for George Karl’s job last year, hope you like what the Nuggets have become.

    • Cory

      Please everyone on here stop talking One and done George Karl. Please man, Karl did what he did and came up small with his philosophy. you saying this now but bet money you were upset every year we lost because of Karls coaching.

      • LBJ

        Actually, many of us understood we had an improving young team with an entertaining style of play that produced 57 wins. While we were disappointed with losing to GSW, we also understood that without Gallo there was very little chance for a long playoff run.
        To blow that up for the garbage we have now is a disaster.

        Furthermore, we have little hope for improvement next year -even with a high draft pick.

        • steve

          so why is it a good excuse that we lost without gallo last year when Karl was coaching but not this year when we are without him, Mcgee, Nate Rob for the year and Lawson for long stretches? Remember we went on a 8 game winning streak and were several games above .500 at one point. Also, it’s definitely not shaw’s fault he is playing with a roster that doesn’t fit his scheme. That’s on the GM. He brought in the coach, now he needs to bring in the right players.

          • gimpcom187

            Lawson missed the same number of games last season, Mcgee is at BEST a wash versus Hickson and Mozgov. Nate Rob is a wash to Miller, Founier. Gallo is the one guy you can say is a big deal losing and he was lost for the playoffs. AND the team won 57 games last year in an incredibly deep conference without ONE top 30 ballplayer. NOT ONE. Look at the other teams that won 55 plus games. Clippers had Chris paul and Griffin, Spurs had Parker and Duncan. Memphis had Gasol, Randolph and Conley (who is clearly better than Ty because on offense Ty is slightly better and on D Conley is HUGELY better), OKC has Durant and Westbrook, Miami has Lebron, Wade and Bosh. Stop trying to win this whiny conversation about Karl. It’s clearly a loss on your part. Hopefully the draft works out and the team is smart enough to dismantle for picks and young players between now and Summer 2015. Hopefully they will find a coach in the next decade that is as good as Karl was. That’s what YOU signed up for when you trashed Karl and didn’t understand what the talent on this team really was.

          • Poz303

            I think fans cab take losing under the current circumstances but not the way we are losing.

      • gimpcom187

        Cory you are a CLASSIC nuggets fanatic. In contrast nba fans who are fans of the nugs understood what this team had. Admit you were wrong or stop talking about karl. Those are your only 2 choices.

      • Sharkboy242

        Thank you, finally someone with some sense

    • Paul Griggs

      Thank you, finally someone with some sense

    • Leo

      how many wins do you think karl would have missing 6 rotation players?

      • gimpcom187

        Pprobably they have a slightly different team. Id guess 4-6 extra wins.

      • Sharkboy242

        In a George Karl apologist’s fantasy land we wouldn’t be injured and would be on pace to destroy Portland, The Clippers, SA and OKC behind the likes Iguadala and a healthy Gallo.

        • gimpcom187

          No crazy. The difference between karl proponents and fire karl cronies is being logical. It would be a different team but people who know basketball understand last years team wasnt a favorite to win round 2 even with gallo. Ive been saying this team was less than 50/50 to get to the playoffs since october. Obviously the injuries ended that. Its gone from a decently talented team one top 20 player from being a legit conference championship contender with a very good coach to an average talented team with a mediocre coach. Welcome to year 1 of a 4-8 year rebuild.

        • Poz303

          Really? That’s how you think?

      • Aaron Durkin

        My point exactly!!!

      • Wes

        He wouldn’t, he’d quit. Most overrated coach of all time.

    • Sharkboy242

      Great input. Would read again.

    • Andrew

      I do. I have big expectations for next year if the Nuggets can get a great draft pick and all of their guys come back healthy.

      I question Shaw’s coaching the same as everyone else, but I expect big improvement from him in his second year, as well. I’m just a fan, though, so all of this is out of my control. That’s how I can just ride this out without being too torn up about it.
      This Karl/Anti-Karl debate is pretty played out. He’s not coming back. End of story. Just like two years ago, they were not getting rid of Karl despite the fact that many wanted him gone. No sense getting upset about it. The front office ultimately decided they wanted to shake things up to win a championship, not just have playoff teams every year. The safe thing would definitely have been to keep Karl, so you have to at least give them some credit for taking a chance. You may not agree with their decision being valid or justified, but that’s probably (who really knows, for sure) the reason.
      The front office decided that Karl’s coaching was limited to regular season success, and the post season record bore that out. The counter-argument for Karl fans is that his teams were never as good as the teams they played during those years, were not favored, were not expected to win, so the losses were not Karl’s fault. The counter-argument to that argument is that a truly “great” coach would have found a way to win some of those series. No real way to prove it either way.
      It is what it is.

      • Sharkboy242

        Thank you, finally someone with some sense

      • Nugman

        If you think we’re going anywhere with Shaw you’re very confused. Shaw is the next Josh McDaniels. We’re going to keep hearing about how we have to get his players for his system until the big losses become unacceptable.

  • Dan Sivertson

    Kudos to the Kings for playing a great game.

  • Sharkboy242

    Why couldn’t Karl just have won that Golden State series? Then he would have never been fired and everything would be all fine and dandy.

    Dammit Karl!

    • gimpcom187

      why couldn’t the front office and nuggets fanatics paid attention to the talent on this team and been realistic that Karl got as much as was reasonably expected out of the team including winning 4-6 games beyond what they should have? Don’t blame Karl for your lack of basketball acumen and impulsivity control.

      • Sharkboy242

        False. The Nuggets were favorites to win the first series by virtually every major sport analyst.

        Try again.

        • gimpcom187

          because they didn’t understand the loss of Gallo was significant and MORE importantly they didn’t (myself included) understand that GSW were much better than their regular season record They had zero average defensive bigs on their team for all but 32 games and then bogut was healthy the entire playoffs and is certainly a top 10 defensive big.
          It’s been said over and over and over. If you watched the spurs GSW series it was clear the Warriors were the better team between GSW and Denver (with gallo out for sure and even with him it is questionable). GSW played the spurs straight up for 4 games. The spurs were tied for the best team in the league. The prognosticators didn’t understand the value of bogut especially in comparison to the rest of their roster of bigs.

          And that series is the ONLY series during Karls Nuggets career where his team had more wins than their opponent and lost (that they were hypothetical favorites).
          Again if you had basketball acumen you would understand. You (and numerous others) were unrealistic whiners up until late February of last year. Then returned to your reactionary and unrealistic thoughts after the GSW series. And despite all subsequent evidence CLEARLY pointing to HOW UNBELIEVABLY wrong you were about Karl and the talent this team has had over the past 10 years (Melo is clearly not a top 10 player nor has he ever been) you still think you are right. It’s OK to be wrong just don’t expect people to listen to your incorrect statements.

          If your goal was to blow up the team and move on that is OK. Don’t blame Karl for that. The reality is if this team wanted a realistic shot of winning a championship they were 1-2 significant upgrade away which is very hard to do in the NBA. Probably rebuilding was the right idea. If the goal is to be entertaining and win 50+ games and add minor upgrades to become a team that could have a run similar to Memphis last 3 years then stay with Karl. Those are the ONLY two options that make any sense and yet this front office seems to not be taking either as of yet. And when people get on here and suggest the team HAD to let Karl go indicating a different coach could have done better…. It was silly in May of 2013, Silly in October and beyond ridiculous to say now.

          • Sharkboy242

            I’m not going to agree with the notion that GS had any advantage over us in that series – they didn’t. Karl and his gimmick offense were exploited by Mark Jackson. Players were having to play in ways they had never played before and Denver looked like a mess. Run and gun just doesn’t translate well into playoff success and when you’re having to succumb to changing your season long methods during the playoffs you know you’re screwed. Mark Jackson out-coached George Karl, it wasn’t a matter of talent.

            I just don’t agree at all with Karl’s method of basketball. Sure its good to take advantage of the high altitude and tire out your team to get those extra wins but when your whole offense is centered around that and nothing else you’re not going to go very far.

            • LBJ

              Players were out of position because: 1) Gallo was out, 2) Faried was hurt and 3) our bigs were playing horrendous. Plus, when Lee got hurt – Barnes moved to the 4 (that “genius” Jackson went small) and was totally dominating Faried.

              The GSW series was not lost because the Nuggets played up-tempo basketball (GSW plays pretty fast as well) but was won by the better team (at that time) – which is how virtually all best of seven series are decided.

              • Nugman

                And they shot lights out. People sometimes forget how making shots changes a game, or series.

              • gimpcom187

                And the nuggets shot horribly from three. Iguodala had a great series from 3 (I think like 45%). Ty shot 20%, Brewer shot 25% and Chandler shot 30%. So everyone shot about 10-15% less than they did during the regular season and their other top tier shooter was out. Not to mention that Gallo is their best or second best half court offensive player. Not to mention people act like it was a blowout series that they were embarassed by. They lost game 3 by 2 points and game 6 by 4 points. game 6 they lost by 4 points when Iguodala hit 5/8 from 3 and the rest of the team hit 2/20. 10%. TEN PERCENT. Get a clue

              • Sharkboy242

                Gallo had been out since April. That’s not why players were out of position, spare me the BS. Koufus was playing bad because Karl had him doing things he had never done before in the regular season (i.e. hedging out on Curry and chasing him around like a dummy). Karl tried to adapt to a playoff setting and ultimately failed.

                Its funny that you say the series wasn’t lost because the Nuggets played up-tempo basketball — you’re damn right — you cant play up-temp basketball in the playoffs. Hence the loss.

              • LBJ

                Koufus couldn’t make a shot because he was hedging on defense? You are clueless…

              • Sharkboy242

                That’s not what I said. Keep reaching though.

            • gimpcom187

              Unfortunately for you the heat run the exact same style. Seattle made the finals once and the western conference finals 2 other times with karl with the exact same style. Phx was the second best team in the nba with essentially the same style from 05-07. Half court offense requires people who can break down the defense AND create for others. The nugs dont and didnt have that. Karl did the only thing he could do. Run. Otherwise last years team wins 48-52 games and gets a 6 or 7 seed. Like I said youdidnt and dont understand the talent on this team.

              • Sharkboy242

                Please don’t compare us to the Heat. Our styles are not the same nor have the ever been. The Heat are masters of running a drawn play, how is that anything like the Nuggets? The similarity is that they’re fast and can run an up-temp offense but the difference is they actually have half court game.

                And way to name a bunch of teams that had the same style and ultimately failed. Prove my point more please.

              • LBJ

                Let’s see how much we win when we play the same style as the Knicks and Nets.

            • Nugman

              We aren’t going anywhere with Shaw even if you get your half court offense.

  • LBJ

    Really like what Pete D is doing with the Kings. Acquiring talented players (Gay), dumping bad contracts (Thornton) – stuff a good GM does. Too bad Joshy had his head up his ass this offseason and didn’t promote him when Ujiri left. Maybe we wouldn’t be bringing in a boatload of journeymen and giving away draft picks to move guys our coach initiates confrontations with.

    Likely another team we will be looking up at in the standings next year….

    • Cullen

      I completely agree that letting Pete D slip out of our grips was devastating. A real losing moment, for sure.

  • DraftGuy

    which pick do we have ?! 9th

    • LBJ

      We need to do better!

    • Erlingur Grétar Einarsson

      We’re up to 8th with the Knicks latest loss! We’re on our way there!

    • Aaron Durkin

      It is a Lottery so have a % right now.

    • COfoEVA

      We have the possibility of 2 top 10 picks.

      • Ryan Chalstrom

        No just one.

        • COfoEVA

          I though we got the Knicks pick and ours? Its not a swap is it?

          • Ryan Chalstrom

            I wish – but no we sent one of the picks to Orlando in the Afflalo/Igoudala/Howard trade. We get the better pick between us and the Knicks this year, the worst of the two picks goes to Orlando.

  • CDeavs

    I don’t get to watch a lot of Nuggets games live because I work nights and because I live outside Colorado, but I watch most games on the League Pass archive. Something I’ve found joy in the last few games, particularly in the Kings game, and something I’ll continue to do the rest of the season is look at the guys on the current roster and deciding who I want going forward for next season and beyond, and who should be trade bait. For me, Lawson, Faried and Fournier are obvious keepers. If we build around them and the draft, and trade our pieces that were highly valued around the League as recently as a year ago, I wouldn’t be upset. It sucks now, but winning more down the road is way more desirable. I would like to see Connelly shop Wilson, Foye, Hickson, and Randolph this summer to see if we can get first round picks/good, young talent for any/all of them. Gallo would be an interesting trade piece as well, though it would be an extremely tough sell because of his injury and contract. Let’s face it: McGee will be here, his contract is terrible and with his injury, no one wants him now. Mozgov is a possibility as a guy we could get a 2nd rounder for. 1 year left on his deal after this season, with a team option. He’s been ok this year, shown some flashes, but is he really a guy you build around? Nate and Arthur both have the option to leave, if they don’t pick up their player options. We’ll see how that plays out but I’m not holding my breath on either of them sticking around. Quincy Miller has some potential, wouldn’t mind seeing what he can do if he focuses on being a Corey Brewer-type guy who runs, defends and can hit the corner 3. All in all, I think a major reboot is on the horizon, like a lot of people here do. I think making the moves they did last off-season were a quick fix to see if they could continue with the lightning-in-a-bottle they caught last year. It didn’t work, and now it’s time to go a different route. Trade for picks, young guys and PLEASE GET A KNOCK DOWN, THREE POINT SHOOTER. Portland is a great example of what we should be doing. Golden State as well. Build through young guys and the draft, and if you’re patient and have the right coach (we’ll talk about that later), good things happen.

    • steve

      I disagree with keeping faried. I think he’s a bench big that will come in and give 25-30 minutes of good energy and rebounding and some dunks. But he can’t play a lick of defense against any top 20 big in the game right now. Lawson is an obvious keeper, i really think fourniers future is bright, he just needs to work on his passing on the offseason as he throws away too many turnovers. He could be a manu ginobli type player for us going forward. I don’t mind keeping qmiller as he has potential to be a stretch 4. Mozgov is a solid rotational big especially for his salary but in the right deal, i’d trade him. I would love for Chandler to beast these last 2 months of season so we can move his arse on the offseason. He’s just awful and needs a change of scenery. Hickson and Mcgee i’d give away at this point. Gallinari i guess i’d keep but he is always banged up.

      But this roster needs to be blown up, starting this offseason.

      • gimpcom187

        good call on faried and the roster

  • Poz303

    I apologize for George Karl having won 57 games last season.

    No, really, I’m so sorry.

    - Gk Apologist

    • Bryan

      But not being upset by a lower seed in the first round of those playoffs (a series which included getting blown out at home) or the consistent first round exits in the playoffs?

      • Nugman

        Do you go to the playoff games? They are incredible live. I would take one playoff series over what’s going on this year in a heart beat. I might also remind all you anti first rounders that basically all the first round series we lost were competitive. I enjoyed every home playoff game and several at Staples center over the last decade. Ever been to a Nuggets-Lakers playoff game at Staples? Awesome!

        The saddest thing is that now it will probably be several years before we get back to where GK had us. It’s really a bummer to think of no playoff games for the next few years. I will miss them dearly. And I really can’t see Shaw leading us there no matter who he has on the roster.

        • Bryan

          I’ll remind you that the Nuggets were blown out in game 2 of the series after they had lost David Lee and that if hadn’t been for Andre Miller playing out of his mind in game 1 the Nuggets would have been swept.

          I’ll also remind you of the year the Nuggets brought in AI to pair with Melo and Camby (the Nuggets were well over the luxury tax) and completely roller over for the Lakers.

          Also, the crowds at Pepsi Center sucked after game 2 because everyone knew the series was over.because of Karl’s history of playoff ineptitude.

          I want my team to win a championship not to get a participation ribbon for making it to the first round of the playoffs.

          • Nugman

            Do you go to the games? Tonight’s game will probably be a waste of money so you can fantasize about tanking to win a championship. I’ll also remind you that every series has it’s ups and downs. We were dominating game 3 and then gave it away and then of course Curry went off, the little jerk.

            I want to watch competitive basketball and the product we have now isn’t even close to that and Shaw is not the answer. It will take years to get back to even being decent while you dream about your team championship.

            • Bryan

              Did John Elway say that everyone should be elated with the season because they got to go the SuperBowl? No, he said expectations were not meant. And if the Broncos had lost in the first round again, Fox probably would have been fired.

              I like competitive playoff basketball. I have had one season of that in the past decade (and Karl blew the WCF series by having Carter inbound the ball late). The only thing that prevented the Nuggets from being swept was Miller going off in game 1. That is pathetic, especially against the sixth seed and does not rise to my criteria for what constitutes competitive.

              It was inevitable that the Nuggets were going to take a step back this year with Gallo out. Even if Karl were the coach the team would not have won 57 games again. But there have been even more injuries than that which have exacerbated things (and would have regardless of who the coach or GM was).

              On the bright side, the Nuggets will get a bunch of guys back healthy next year and will add a lottery pick. Moreover, the adversity has exposed some guys on the team has not having a lot of heart or fight in them.

              This means that if the Nuggets get a high enough lottery pick and Connelly chooses wisely, the Nuggets could get a franchise caliber player, a bunch of talent back, and be able to get rid of some of the dead weight that has exposed itself.

              • gimpcom187

                Yeah this is patently false as I stated above. 6 game series. Games 3 and six were won by the Warriors by 2 and 4 points. Including the fact that of their top 5 3 point shooters 1 (iguodala) shot significantly above his season average, 1 (gallo) didn’t play, and ty 20%, Brewer 25% and Chandler 30% were atrocious. I would say that was actually a decent job keeping the team in contention despite that bad luck shooting. It’s just plain revisionist history on your part based on emotion of losing the series rather than actually any basketball analysis or understanding.

                Much less talent coming back than you seem to perceive.

              • Bryan

                Yet, you just used Gallo being out as an excuse to pat Karl on the back for his “valiant” effort in the playoffs.

                Why was Chandler’s shooting down? Could it be because Karl had him guarding Bogut and he was tired? The fact that his best shooting game came when Karl finally decided to start Mozgov would seem to suggest so.

                Brewer was never a good shooter he could just occasionally get hot. Everyone (except for Karl apparently) knew this. It was Karl who stuck with him so determinedly, so his poor shooting is not an excuse for Karl, it’s an indictment on him.

                Nothing I said was untrue, the Nuggets were blown out at home in game 2 and had it not been for Andre Miller’s effort in game 1, the Nuggets would have been swept.

                How did games 3 and 6 go, by the way? The Nuggets spent most of those games digging themselves out of a hole and never being able to pull away from them. GS was in control of those games.

                When Lee got hurt, the Warriors had to go small. Karl responded to this by trying to go even smaller and it blew up in his face. Karl was out coached in the playoffs, again.

              • LBJ

                Brewer was a key part of the team all year – and you want to bench him for a playoff series where we lost 4-2 and lost two games in the final possession????

                Who would you have played instead??? Wow – you are clueless!

          • LBJ

            We lost 2 games in the series when Ty failed to finish at the end. Game 2 he dribbled the ball out of bounds and Game 6 he missed a wide open 3 that would have tied the game.

      • gimpcom187

        Took care of that problem missing the playoffs this season and likely next. Over acheived with karl and you mistook that for underacheiving in the playoffs. The point is you should havevlearned something after this season if you were anti-karl. You havent apparently.

        • Bryan

          Are you kidding me? Karl has been a terrible playoff coach every where he coached. Recall that he coached the first ever 1 seed to a loss against an 8 seed.

          Getting blown out at home in the playoffs by a lower seed is never acceptable. Especially, after that lower seed loses an all star caliber player. That happened.

          GK got thoroughly out coached in that series just like he has every other series.

          Fact: The Nuggets were never going to win a championship with Karl at the helm.

          I don’t know if Shaw can be a championship coach or not but Karl has proven over and over again that he isn’t, so if championships are the goal he had to be gotten rid of.

          • gimpcom187

            Fact they aren’t winning one without him either, because maybe you haven’t figured it out but they’ve NEVER been to the Finals. The current talent on this team isn’t even worthy of a playoff spot. Fact they made the Western Finals the ONE playoff season they had two top 30 players on their roster in 2009 (2010 Karl wasn’t coaching). The spurs were done in the first and second rounds for 3 straight years because of lack of talent surrounding Parker and Duncan and because Ginobili was injured during the playoffs losing a 1 vs. 8 scenario. Guess you would have fired Pop after that series too? Of course not.
            Karl’s NOT one of the top 10 coaches of all time. But he’s better than anything the nuggets are likely to get in the next decade and probably equal to anyone they have ever had (besides Larry Brown back in the day). Your two choices were hope to add another piece or two to make a run with Karl. Or restart with a complete overhaul. Call it what it is. A LACK of talent. Not Karl’s coaching.

            • Bryan

              Shaw hasn’t coached enough or an actual complete team (as a result of injuries) to make any determinations.

              The Nuggets made it to the playoffs as a result of Chauncey Billups dictating the culture and making up for Karl’s lax coaching style (see e.g. demanding inbound plays actually be drawn up).

              Also, the Nuggets are going to get an infusion of talent next year when Gallo and McGee return from injuries and they add a lottery pick.

              Finally, the contention that winning a championship shouldn’t be the goal of every time is absurd (not to mention infuriating). If any owner doesn’t have the goal of winning a championship then they shouldn’t be an owner.

              • gimpcom187

                It’s an epic fall from grace on the level of Lebron leaving the Cavs. 57 wins down to what 30-35 wins.

                Yes the nugs got the WCF despite Karl. Chauncey is a great team leader which is a necessary element for ALL championship caliber teams (hence the teams not including Chauncey were not title contenders). Their are one or two of those type guys on all championship type teams and they work in conjunction with the coach. Accidentally, you are actually supporting the concept that Karl had another subtle disadvantage with last few years team as their was no consensus team leader. Maybe you think Mcgee will provide that when he comes back too. ;-)

                Mcgee is no better than Mozgov or Hickson so it’s a lateral move and just someone to soak up minutes.
                Gallo will have missed basketball for 18 months at the time. Assuming he returns to normal at some point in his career it won’t be next year.

                Winning a championship should be the LONG term goal. But in a particular season if you don’t have the talent it’s called a pipe dream. (wizards aren’t hoping for a championship this season, they are hoping to develop for long term) You can be delusional all you want. But it does affect your ability to enjoy a team for what it is and when you spew delusional thoughts people will call you out. This is why I think the difference between the Karl haters and proponents is important. Most of the Karl haters are at best unrealistic and more often delusional about the team’s talent. Ive seen numerous people say Ty was a top 5 PG in this league. It’s clearly not true and that’s not even taking into account his below average defense since that is harder to quantify.

                Like I’ve said if you wanted to win a championship then you needed to rebuild and get a star on the team. If you wanted to add pieces to see if Karl could make the team a borderline contender (similar to Memphis the last few years) then do that. Advocating for a coaching change and seeing what they could do makes no sense. It implies you think Karl underperformed as a coach when in fact the opposite is true. You are choosing the ONLY unacceptable choice of the 3.

              • Bryan

                Are you seriously comparing Karl leaving to Lebron leaving? That’s absurd. If Karl were here he would have to deal with no Gallo all season, Faried starting the season injured, Nate Robinson getting injured, Chandler being injured at times, Ty Lawson being injured, McGee out for the entire season.

                No amount of pieces would have made the Nuggets are borderline contender with Karl. It’s been the same story for a decade of Karl. Playoff ineptitude.

                Billups was a leader and a coach on the floor. Arguably a better coach then the coach on the bench, since he, you know, recognized the significance of things like inbound plays.

                Karl was badly out coached by a second year coach who spent his post playing career as a tv announcer (not as an assistant coach). I can do nothing but shake my head and laugh if you can argue that he over performed despite the wealth of evidence that points to his ineptitude.

                I’m curious though did his number one seed Seattle team that the Nuggets beat in 94 just over perform in the regular season too?

              • LBJ

                McGoof is an infusion of talent????
                You are delusional

              • Bryan

                He may be a goof but he has talent and ridiculous amount of athleticism. There is a reason message board hero Masai Ujiri re-signed him after all.

  • Richard Pesicka

    My wife asked me this morning if I thought the Nuggets would pick up the players contracts bought out on the Knicks team. I said no, they are tanking and they have let the fans know that they are not into signing anybody worth a crap. She said how do they sell tickets, I said not very well but the owners really don’t care. How long they can remain a I don’t care team, will be seen. Tax write offs..

  • slugdugg
  • Paul Griggs

    Nice start against the mediocre Nets at home…wow, the depths to which this team has plunged…they should schedule a game or two against Metro St. or Mines to see which is better…