Rapid Reaction: Denver Nuggets 103-San Antonio Spurs 108

The Nuggets tried. Oh man did they try. But ultimately putting yourself down by 19 points against the defending Western Conference champs and current best team in the NBA is a bad idea and Denver fell just short of completing their comeback by falling 108-103 and were officially eliminated from the playoffs.

Please leave your thoughts on the grades in the comments below.

Denver Nuggets 103 FinalRecap | Box Score 108 San Antonio Spurs
Kenneth Faried, PF 34 MIN | 8-15 FG | 8-10 FT | 10 REB | 1 AST | 4 STL | 1 BLK | 3 TO | 24 PTS | -11

These types of nights are becoming more and more common for Faried. Offensively he was good, defensively he was not and he was on the floor for the major Denver run. Tonight he did it against a lot of length in Tim Duncan and Tiago Splitter so that is a nice sign going forward.

Quincy Miller, SF 22 MIN | 4-12 FG | 3-4 FT | 4 REB | 2 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 11 PTS | -18

Quincy’s start was great. Everything after that wasn’t so much.

Timofey Mozgov, C 30 MIN | 6-9 FG | 1-2 FT | 11 REB | 0 AST | 1 STL | 2 BLK | 3 TO | 14 PTS | -8

The offense and rebounding were good from Mozzy who finished through and over bodies in the paint tonight, something he doesn’t do often enough. But defensively he struggled there were plenty of moments where he was responsible for Tim Duncan and let the future hall of famer wander around the elbows and torch Denver with his jumper or passing before the defense could react. At one point he was stuck chasing a pass that was already delivered and it led to Duncan sealing Mozgov away for an easy dunk. It was another worrisome moment in the Mozgov struggles against athletes and guys who can shoot file and a big reason he wasn’t on the floor to close the game.

Ty Lawson, PG 35 MIN | 2-8 FG | 3-4 FT | 4 REB | 7 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 5 TO | 7 PTS | -11

Lawson being on the floor opens things up so much for Denver but his production tonight was minimal, especially scoring which is something he needs to do for Denver to win games on a nightly basis.

Randy Foye, SG 34 MIN | 4-9 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 8 PTS | -6

The Spurs did a terrific job of bottling up Foye and not allowing him to get open threes tonight. But that will happen when Randy Foye is your best wing player, a role he should never play.

Darrell Arthur, PF 30 MIN | 3-10 FG | 2-2 FT | 4 REB | 1 AST | 4 STL | 3 BLK | 2 TO | 9 PTS | +11

The shooting numbers weren’t good for Arthur, and some of the shots were a bit questionable, but it was no coincidence that the fourth quarter run came with Arthur on the floor. He is so far and away the best big man defender on the team when put in positions to succeed thanks to his understanding of rotations and the athletic ability to make them and that was again on display tonight.

Aaron Brooks, PG 31 MIN | 9-18 FG | 3-3 FT | 5 REB | 8 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 25 PTS | +12

Brooks did every single thing he could to get Denver back in the game in the second half. He was absolutely terrific driving to the rim, knocking down threes and finding teammates. Denver doesn’t get anywhere close to the Spurs in the second half without him.

Evan Fournier, SG 22 MIN | 2-2 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 5 PTS | +8

In 22 minutes Fournier had as many turnovers as made field goals and assists combined. These games without Wilson Chandler and Nate Robinson should be a chance for Fournier to show he has value as more than just a spot up shooter that can attack a closeout every now and then and he hasn’t often enough. Instead tonight he was flummoxed by the Spurs length and athleticism on the perimeter that for the most part cut off his drives and left him with nothing to do.

Brian Shaw

Shaw rode the hot hands that got Denver back in the game late but ultimately it is almost impossible to beat the Spurs with an eight man rotation that includes guys in roles they don’t belong in like Randy Foye as the best wing player and Quincy Miller as a 20 minute a game player.

Four Things We Saw

  1. I’m not sold on Timofey Mozgov as anything more than a third big and nights like tonight make it even harder to believe there is more there. Mozgov just looked lost at times against the Spurs fast ball movement and cuts which is a problem for a guy whose only real defensive role is as a rim protector. He wasn’t the only guy to struggle but as a guy whose specialty is probably defense (or it has looked that way based on his offense in the second half of the season) it is a worrisome trend.
  2. Mozgov did hit a three tonight though. I guess as a compliment to Kenneth Faried it makes sense since Faried won’t ever be mistaken as a floor stretcher but if Mozgov is going to return to the bench next year to play heavier minutes alongside Darrell Arthur I don’t really get the point. It is fun to watch as this season winds down though.
  3. There was a sequence early on in the game that showed the vast disparity in the Spurs and Nuggets. First the Nuggets ran a play that ended with a Kenneth Faried pin down screen for Quincy Miller. Miller made the shot but the action was so slow developing that it felt like the Nuggets were just standing around. Then the Spurs came down the court and ran all kinds of actions all over the floor and whipped the ball around the perimeter for an open look. It was the well-oiled machine against the still thinking players and should give a glimpse into what things will look like when the Nuggets finally have all their pieces in place and comfortable sometime next year.
  4. The Spurs play incredibly fun, beautiful basketball. It was just a joy to watch.

Next up: Friday, March 28 @ 7:00 p.m. (MST) vs. San Antonio. Going to the game? Save money and get cheap Denver Nuggets tickets here.

  • Sócrates Manzoni

    Fun game! Can’t close games with the Arthur/KF duo though, any big man with a post game will eat them alive like Timmy did today. I don’t know what Brian Shaw can do about that though, Mozzy and #Airwolf are the only healthy 7-footers in the roster and neither is known for their toughness.

    • Nugman

      But you could argue Mozzy would have had a better shot at stopping Duncan. Most coaches would’ve at least tried it when the Spurs kept going to Duncan late, but Shaw seems reluctant to make substitutions down the stretch. I really wish someone would ask him why he won’t do it. I would love to know.

      • heykyleinsf

        I think I’m lost here.. who’s our back up center right now?

        • Nugman

          I think it’s Brooks. He’s usually the one guarding the 7 footers in the paint

          • LBJ

            I really love playing Foye or Fours at SF and Faried at C. I thought we fired Karl for playing small ball?

            • mike gomez

              what else does he have to use?? if half the roster is out

              • LBJ

                Mozzy can’t play the last 8 minutes of the game? Q had only played 22 minutes. Either one of them would work.

              • mike gomez

                well if you notice mozzy was struggling and was getting lost everywhere and q really??

              • LBJ

                Not like Foye or Fours were doing anything either. We need to make a decision on Q prior to next year – what better time to see what he can do in a competitive situation?

              • mike gomez

                rather go with them than miller, airwolf or anthony. i dont see miller coming back

              • LBJ

                We are starting him to see if he has a future in Denver. Accordingly, he should be finishing the games for the same reason.

              • mike gomez

                he doesnt simple as that, he is not going to beat out chandler or gallo for that spot and his game is still very raw

              • LBJ

                Teams have 15 roster spots. Smart teams allot a few for developmental players with low salaries (I’ll admit that probably excludes the nuggets FO).
                We also don’t know that Gallo will be 100% to start the year. We don’t know if Chandler will be back, his best position is the stretch 4, not the 3.

              • mike gomez

                what smart team have players such as that?? gallo should be back at the start of the season and also we need space for our drat pick, chandler is still going to be getting mins in the 3 and four. then you have Arthur and faried getting mins in 4. so were are his mins going to come

              • LBJ

                Let me clue you in on something, not all 15 roster spots are in the rotation. The Spurs had Danny Green sit on the bench for a couple of years (and even cut him) before he became a starter. I would rather keep Q than Randolph – he is cheaper and has more potential.

              • mike gomez

                you kind of prove my point, green was cut multiple times because his game was so raw and when to the d league for couple years. right now we have need for miller and agree with you on Randolph but think we have him for one more year

              • Nugman

                If I need to stop Duncan to win the game I put Moz in. Faried and DA don’t have a chance, but Moz does. And he was no more lost than Faried and DA. Despite what Matt says, if you watch tape on the last 4 minutes the two bigs missed help rotations repeatedly. It cost us the game. Moz couldn’t have done any worse and probably better.

              • heykyleinsf

                and I’m sure that’s Shaw’s fault too..

            • Nugman

              I thought he was fired for playing two PGs like Ty and Brooks together

              • heykyleinsf

                yeah.. that and being the worst playoff coach in NBA history.

              • Nugman

                We may not see the playoffs under Shaw

              • mike gomez

                we will with a healthy roster

              • Dan Sivertson

                Not even close. Do your homework. Karl’s win percentage is 74th all-time out of 309 NBA coaches. Most of the 309 never made it to the playoffs. http://www.basketball-reference.com/coaches/NBA_stats.html?mobile=false

              • James Duff

                163 coaches have coached in the playoffs, and karl is 74th in win %. 6th in playoff games played. I’d say that enters the realm of worst playoff coach ever

              • Dan Sivertson

                James, I agree with you. Karl’s performance there has been abysmal as an NBA playoffs coach. He’s been a good regular season coach. He has over performed there with a lack of superstar talent. The lack of superstars has hindered his success in the playoffs – the real NBA season on steroids.

          • heykyleinsf

            well Shaw should have pulled Brooks so we had a chance to win the game with… uh.. with.. uh.. who again?

            • Nugman

              Shaw should coach better defense

              • Kane

                Yeah, with that awesome defensive roster he’s been given.

              • LBJ

                Last year we ranked 11th in defense. So Karl had to be replaced by the defensive wizard Shaw. We now rank 21st.

              • Kane

                with a near full healthy roster, 3 seven footers, and arguably the best perimeter defender in the league.

              • mike gomez

                well last year we had iggy,corey, and gallo our best wing and perimeter defenders

      • Kane

        to be fair, Mozgov WONT close out on Duncan and that knock down mid range jumper, so Arthur is the only choice.

        • Nugman

          So Duncan goes to the low block and gets lay ups the last 4 minutes. In case you didn’t know, the odds of hitting a 15 foot jump shot are a lot lower than making a layup. I’ll take my chances with him shooting the 15 footer. Sooner or later he’s going to miss a few.

          • Kane

            Duncan hits 100% of layups? Double down! his bank and elbow jumpers are pretty much automatic. You’re talking about a guy who defined the PF spot.

            You’ve got this blind hatred for Brian Shaw, everyone can see it.

            • Nugman

              If Shaw would coach the players better and teach the fundamentals I wouldn’t be so hard on him. I supported him early in the season, but he done nothing to keep my support

          • mike gomez

            i dont know why you question shaw on his rotations when karl rotations were so horrible, for example in the playoffs, he has miller on curry,lawson on barnes and chanlder on andrew

            • LBJ

              Faried was guarding Barnes. Lawson was guarding Jack or Curry. Fours started several of the games, not Andre.

              • mike gomez

                yeah but their were time when he had a miller on klay or miller, how is old man miller supose to guard them? then lawson on a 6’7-6’8 barnes.

              • LBJ

                Maybe on a switch, Ty got Barnes – but he was never guarding him straight up. You don’t know what the hell you are talking about.
                I seem to recall old man Miller – the guy you wanted on the bench – winning game one of that series almost singlehandedly.

              • mike gomez

                miller couldn’t guard a shadow, i dont see why he was out their chasing two of the best shooters in the game.

              • LBJ

                Iggy was on Thompson and Ty was getting torched by Jack. Gallo was out, Faried was hurt and KK was horrible. Who did you want Karl to play instead of Miller?

              • mike gomez

                iggy was on curry and ty was guarding klay most of the time. i mean i was kool with miller playing but not with lawson on the floor as the same time trying to defend klay and thompson. playing small ball with them cost us

              • LBJ

                They were playing 3 guards most of the time after Lee got hurt. We had to play small ball to match up! Our would you have rather had KK guarding Curry?

              • mike gomez

                no i would of had iggy or corey, the other thing that piss me off was when he keep going with kufos when he was trash for two straight playoffs. instead of mcgee or mozzy. also he kept giving corey the green light to shoot threes when he couldn’t hit shot to save his Denver career

              • LBJ

                We hadn’t played Mozzy all year – you don’t stick a guy off the end of you bench into a playoff series. McGoof wasn’t much better than KK, Bogut was kicking his ass, too.
                First, you want Brewer playing – and then you don’t want him to shoot? There is a reason Karl has won 1000 NBA games and you have won none.

              • heykyleinsf

                Miller SUCKS on defense.
                He will be the first guy to admit it.

        • Nugman

          If Foye would stay between his man and the bucket Moz wouldn’t have to rotate over to help Foye and leave Duncan open at the elbow. Blame Foye, not Moz for that

  • Tyler

    I enjoyed the fight out of the guys tonight. Fun game. Only thing I hate about this loss is knowing the Nuggets are officially eliminated from the Playoffs after 10 straight years. Here’s to better days.

    • heykyleinsf

      here here.
      Didn’t know that.
      Shouldn’t be surprised..
      but it is different.
      only ten more games until next year.

    • Dan Sivertson

      The Nuggets are not interested in winning. It’s not a priority for the franchise. We won’t be going to the playoffs for a long time with the current management in place. The Nugs won 57 games under Karl last year. That won’t happen again. Watching the Nuggets lose is not fun and not worth the time spent. It’s over.

      • mike gomez

        not interested in winning?? the nuggets won 57 game with a healthy roster

        • LBJ

          And with Ujiri and Karl running the team – you know, the EoY and CoY.

          • mike gomez

            well where is karl now?? didnt the hallfame coach get up by the grizzles and nets for a rookie coach and also got pass up by the clippers

            • Dan Sivertson

              Karl is not done yet. :)

          • Dan Sivertson

            Spot on…

        • Dan Sivertson

          That was last season. It’s entirely different now. The NBA Coach and GM of the year are both long gone. The decision makers that are in charge now are doing irrepairable damage to the franchise. I doubt the Nuggets will be in the playoffs in the near future. The brain trust is gone.

      • heykyleinsf

        buh bye now.

      • Tyler

        You think I didn’t know the season was already over? And what do you mean they’re not interested in winning? They sure seemed to show signs of wanting to win when they beat Miami on the road & the Clippers when they came to town. Who cares if Karl lead a team to 57 wins in the regular season. That stat didn’t change the fact that we would get bounced in the first round every time. Yeah, it may not be fun to watch them lose games the way this season is going, but I’m still going to watch them.

        • Dan Sivertson

          The Nuggets made it to the Western Conference Finals in 2009 with Billups and Anthony. The whole point of going to an NBA game is to have fun watching your team win. Josh Kroenke’s moves tell me he is not interested in winning. I no longer have interest in spending valuable time watching Kroenke’s product until they are back in the playoffs.

      • Sergio Balderas

        I strongly disagree. I knew a season like this was in store for the Nuggets, especially after all these injuries started piling in. When we’ve got Gallo and McGee healthy to start next year and have Robinson ready to spark the bench for us next season, I see the Nuggets being a pretty good threat in the west

        • Dan Sivertson

          Shaw plays a big part of the injuries – overplaying players without understanding their limitations. I hold him 60% responsible due to his rotations. The regular season is an 82 game marathon. Shaw is a rookie NBA coach.

  • heykyleinsf

    You absolutely can not deny.. we completely STOLE brooks from the Rockets.
    Right now.. Connelly and Shaw are looking pretty good for what we’re getting out of him. I hope we lock him up after the season ends.. I love this guy.

    • mike gomez

      it all depends on the price, because we have other needs. also nate might be back and i dont see how thats going to work

      • heykyleinsf

        well I would be surprised if Nate is good to go from day one.
        Happy.. but surprised..
        I think we can keep Brooks cheap.. and if he is capable and
        reliable for playing like this.. he almost is a need.
        These were the San Antonio Spurs tonight in a playoff prep run..
        this wasn’t a pre-season scrimmage.
        I’m impressed so far.

        • mike gomez

          i wouldnt doubt nate, knowing how hard he work and his heart for the game. i think he will be ready for the beginning of the season. im starting to like brooks but its going to be hard to get mins

      • LBJ

        You can never have enough midget PGs or PFs!

        • heykyleinsf

          or players that nearly help us beat the hottest team in basketball. Let’s take your advice and tank for some eventual stiff that never works out.. and we can blame it on Shaw.

          • LBJ

            I’m sure your boys Joshy and Timmy can rustle us up some more journeymen to “help” the team for next year. Maybe they can deal Faried for couple of dwarfs?

            • heykyleinsf

              and George Karl will still be unemployed ..
              because he sucks.

              • Dan Sivertson

                Keep telling yourself that. He’ll be in the Hall of Fame some day.

              • mike gomez

                there is reason why he still doesn’t have a job right now

              • LBJ

                Because he is going to suck every dime out of the dumbass Kroenkes on the last year of his deal I guess we will see what he is doing next year.

              • heykyleinsf

                I don’t disagree.
                Well… I think he’s got a good chance at least.
                He’s not a lock though.

              • gimpcom187

                Im bored of this karl stuff at this point. Im not sure anything could convince he was a really good coach if this season doesnt. Shaw has a shot to be an average coach and an outside to be slightly above average. People trashing him constantly need to get over it. He is what he is and the karl haters are too stubborn to admit their mistake. Move on.

                Karl had no shot at a good coaching position last year as he was fired so late. Its disengenuous to imply an opportunity has come up he would even consider. Im sure he will consider any positions with a relatively young all-star on the team. Wizards, pelicans, and if portland somehow ends up 8th seed or out maybe them.

              • heykyleinsf

                Well you can judge Shaw now.. after he lost half his players.. and in one rookie season..
                or say how great GK was after ten years and as many first round playoff exits.
                You can tell ANYTHING about Shaw so far.
                GK was given more than a generous chance.
                He’s done in the NBA.
                And there were jobs available.
                Grizzlies, Nets, Hawks, Kings, Sixers, Suns, Bobcats and Celtics.. All said not only no.. but F no.

              • LBJ

                The Grizz were going to promote from within. The Clippers got Doc Rivers – perhaps you have heard of him?
                The rebuilding/tanking teams aren’t going to hire a 61 year old coach. The Celtics gave Stevens a 7 year deal.
                Some front offices actually hire coaches that fit with their personnel. Not your boy Joshy…

              • heykyleinsf

                From the NY Times the day he got fired…

                “He does not figure to be unemployed for long… Karl is already drawing interest from the Los Angeles Clippers and the Memphis Grizzlies.

                That would make 13 teams changing coaches between opening night of 2012 and opening night of 2013, tying an N.B.A. high, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.”

                O FOR 13.
                Over 1/3 of the league had open gigs.
                NOBODY…….. WANTED……… HIM.

              • LBJ

                Hey douche bag in SF – Karl had a job on opening night of 2012 – he wasn’t looking for a job until after the season ended in 2013.

                Furthermore, he was getting paid for NOT WORKING. This allows him to be SELECTIVE!

                Wow – you are an idiot!

              • gimpcom187

                Nets signed Kidd less than a week after Karl was fired, not sure he wanted that position anyway. Clippers signed Doc Rivers who is one of 5 or 6 current coaches you would take over Karl. Memphis only got rid of their coach because they had an in house guy they felt was more key to their success and was going to leave otherwise.

                Im sure Karl wasn’t interested in any other positions.

              • Dan Sivertson

                Well said.

  • LBJ

    The first half the nuggets got their asses kicked. Second half, the Spurs kicked the ball all over the place and missed more than 10 bunnies – and still won without much sweat.

  • LBJ

    Chris Marlowe at half – “Nuggets gave up 72 points in the first half of their last game, I guess 63 points tonight is a step in the right direction.”

  • Nugman

    Matt, what happened to all that “Mozgod” promise from early in the year? What happened to Ty’s all-star play from early in the season? Are we going to blame these sad changes on injuries to ther players?

    Remember how fun the Nuggets were to watch the last few years after the Melo trade? Like a well-oiled machine. Sharp cuts, sharp passes, hard drives, powerful dunks, awesome fast breaks, etc.

    Is there one statistical category that the Nuggets are better in now than they were earlier in the season? And before you blame it on the injuries, remember Gallo and McGee have basically been out all season so they had no affect on the early season stats. Don’t most well coached teams improve during the season?

    • heykyleinsf

      Oh yeah.. because Mozzy was so awesome before this year,.
      PLEASE.

  • Richard Pesicka

    Gotta love the Spurs. Great team with a great coach. I wish them well in the playoffs.

    • LBJ

      Good thing Joshy is not their owner – he would have canned Pop and RC after last year!

      • heykyleinsf

        maybe the Spurs will hire GK?
        BAAhahahahaa!!!

        • LBJ

          I’m pretty sure Pop knows Karl could outcoach that our new doofus. The Spurs probably worked up more of a sweat in their walk thru than they did against Shaw’s vaunted D in the first half.

          • heykyleinsf

            yeah right.. they won by five points.
            they’re wanting playoff position.
            they were playing at home.
            they know the Nuggets stopped a couple of winning streaks like they have going.
            I’m sure you’re right LBJ.

            • LBJ

              Do you even watch the games (not that I blame you if you don’t)?
              The Spurs were in no danger of losing – even with them playing as bad as did in the second half.

              • heykyleinsf

                lost by five points.
                5 point game with a minute left.
                it’s not like the Spurs put in their 3rd stringers.

              • Nugman

                Did you watch the game? The final score doesn’t tell the story. Spurs spanked the Nuggets. The teams aren’t even in the same league

              • heykyleinsf

                five points in the last minute.
                The Spurs had to play a full 48..
                again..
                the starters were still on the floor when the buzzer rang.
                It’s a silly argument trying to say the Nuggets didn’t make this a game. They absolutely did. Five points can happen in 10 seconds.

              • LBJ

                He doesn’t watch the games.

        • Richard Pesicka

          Maybe they will go after Shaw.

          • LBJ

            We can only hope…

    • heykyleinsf

      I’m hoping Spurs vs Pacers.
      San Antonio and Indianapolis. Small market teams.
      should help piss David Stern off a little before he’s gone for good.

  • Heisenberg

    More GK talk I see. I think he’s one of the more overrated coaches out there. He’s an above average coach in the regular season, and a below average coach in the playoffs. Remember when the 8 seeded Nuggets upset the top seeded Sonics? Coach of that Sonics team: George Karl. Or when he was the coach in Milwaukee and blew a 3-2 lead in the 01 ECF with a MUCH more talented roster than the 76ers. It’s not just in Denver, he has failed in the postseason wherever he’s coached.

    Don’t get me wrong, I personally like the guy and wish him well. I’d like to see him find another job and have success. The 2009 team was a lot of fun to watch and it’s the closest this franchise has ever been to winning a title. But his style just doesn’t win in the playoffs. Mike D’Antoni ran a similar system in Phoenix, with his own big 3 and lost. If Karl were truly this all time great HC, I would think he would’ve gotten out of the first round more than once while he was in Denver.

    This all isn’t even bringing in how Mark Jackson made Karl look like a CLOWN in last season’s playoff series. “Blah blah, they didn’t have Gallo blah blah.” Golden State also lost a 20-10 PF in David Lee and had two days to adjust. Know what Mark Jackson did? He made a new gameplan and proceeded to absolutely SCHOOL Karl. We didn’t see Golden State make excuses when they lost Lee. They made the necessary adjustments, and had far less time than Karl did when Gallo went out.

    • Heisenberg

      In fact, how about this little stat: In NBA history, 41 teams have won at least 31 of their final 40 games in an 82-game season. Only six went on to lose in their first playoff series — and three were coached by George Karl.

    • LBJ

      What I saw last year was our players got exposed – and outplayed the series by better players. Koufus, McGoof, Faried, Corey, Chandler and Ty got outplayed. Andre Miller saw it. I’m pretty sure Iggy saw it as well – which is one of the reasons why he is a GSW.

      • gimpcom187

        I tend to agree more with lbj. One of the espn stats guys did an analysis where karls teams slightly underperformed in playoffs but suggested most of that difference could be explained by karls teams outperforming their talent in the regular season (again by statistical analysis) .

        Karl was a very good not great coach. Probably tied with doug moe as best in nugs history (behind larry brown but that wasbefore I was born). Karl hasnt spent much if any time with a true rim protecting big (camby was a shot blocker but teams scored in the paint efficiently). Ervin johnson was probably his best. You NEED a rim protector to be a top 5 defense and even top 10 is a struggle without one.

        Last years team had talent more equivalent to a 52-54 win team. Gsw added bogut who is a top 5 rim protector to a 48? Win team. With the loss of gallo injury to faried the loss of lee it was fairly even. The issue was the gsw were better going small than denver once gallo was out. The other issue is that the best offensive player in that series by far was curry. The best defensive player was probably a tie between bogut and iggy. The series despite the blowout in game 2 was pretty close. Game 6 and game3? The nugs had a shot to tie or take the lead with under a minute to play. In the western conference you have no business expecting even a first round win when you dont have a top 10 player let alone top 25.

        • LBJ

          I pretty much agree with you – except that I would contend that Gallo being out and Faried hobbling hurt the nuggets more than Lee’s injury hurt GS.

          • heykyleinsf

            “I would contend that Gallo being out and Faried hobbling hurt the nuggets more than Lee’s injury hurt GS”

            and at the same time…
            no excuses for Shaw..
            even though he’s lost half the team…
            and funny how the same people on Shaw’s back
            are the same ones that loved Iggy…
            If Iggy is so awesome..
            why doesn’t Shaw get credit in comparison
            when these people who love Iggy and hate Shaw
            have made up their minds GK was a superior coach?

            Lots of head scratchers here…

            • LBJ

              I didn’t even mention Iggy.

              You are the guy who has been on a season-long, irrational rant about “Iggy sucks, Iggy screwed us, I’m glad Iggy is gone.” Considering the nuggets replaced Iggy with Foye – an upgrade in your mind – that is just more evidence of Shaw’s poor coaching this year.

              • heykyleinsf

                I liked Iggy fine when he was on our team.
                He screwed us over though.
                I mean.. do I have to break that down again?

                But you know good and well what I meant.

              • LBJ

                No, I don’t know what you mean.
                Based on your posts, I can only conclude that Karl had Iggy at SG (who sucks and is the most overrated guy in the NBA), while Shaw has Foye (a vastly superior player).
                Hence, yet another reason Karl is a better coach than Shaw.

        • Heisenberg

          The Heat don’t have a great rim protector either…I agree it’s difficult to play great D without one but it isn’t impossible.

          GK may not have had a great rim protector but he did have a few HOFers to work with. I think he should have made it out of the first round more than once while he coached here.

          I don’t know if Shaw’s the right guy but I know Karl isn’t the guy to coach a team to a championship.

          • gimpcom187

            Yeah the one exception on top 5 defense without a rim protector is if you have the best wing defender who is long and an athletic freak AND you have another tenacious star semi-dominant top 5ish wing defender in addition. Really The Bulls and Heat are the only teams to do that. (pippen and Lebron being the freak defenders). But that is such a rare occurrence I don’t think it’s a good template. (Paul George and Iguodala are the only other wings in the league now I think you could combo to create a top 5 defense without a top 10 rim protector)

            In addition the Heat defense is teens in efficiency this season and was 9th last year. The previous seasons they were 4th but they had Joel Anthony in the middle for that time period. Im not sure I would call him a true rim protector but that was his most important and valuable skill.

            We’ll have to agree to disagree on Karl. Last year is the first with the nugs he lost a playoff series where his team had the better regular season record. Your posts indicate you understand this team wasn’t quite as talented as their record indicated.

            I see Coaches in categories. If you gave them a 5-10 rating (less than average coach and you aren’t getting more than 2 years on the job) rating 10 would be pop, jackson, larry brown, pat riley (they get the absolute maximum from their teams and often change styles to a degree based on the talent); 9 is vogel, carlisle, thibs (guys with a shot to enter that range though it’s not necessarily likely); 8 adelman, Karl, Lenny Wilkens guys that are very good and can win a championship given the right circumstances (they need top 3 talent that fits their style to have a good shot at the Finals). They do make the team better but they have blind spots with certain talents or types of teams.

            There really aren’t a lot of 9/10 types hanging around in the league. 5-6 at any one time would be my max guess. 8s are kindof the minimum to have a good shot at winning a championship if your talent is sufficient. Brian hill is the example of a coach who is a 6/7 who got severely outcoached in a series that cost a significantly more talented team to lose a championship with the Magic back in the day. You don’t let those guys go unless you are on rebuild mode in my opinion.

            Obviously this is all anecdotal as it is very hard to account for coach value statistically since the circumstances of each team are hard to relate (and the value of defense of individual players has only started to get more accurately measured in the last few years)

      • Heisenberg

        Andre Miller was quoted as saying Denver got outcoached….

        Karl deserves at least some (if not most, IMO) of the blame for the loss to the Warriors.

        • LBJ

          Andre’s quote was “we got outplayed and we got outcoached.” That doesn’t sound like he was placing all the blame on Karl…

          Ty said Karl did everything he could.

  • Richard Pesicka

    Great win Pop. Great players, great bench. Good defense. Nuggets play hard but like orlando and utah, just not enough to win. Stick a fork in them, they are done. 5-10 years down the road maybe we will still have a team and maybe back in the thick of it. As for now, we are way out of our league.

  • Trip

    I didnt catch the game, but from watching highlights and hearing all the talk it sounds like the Nuggets do the same thing they have been doing for years on defense. They leave a good 3 point shooter open to help on defense. I know it is something you are taught to always help, but you cant leave green open on a wing or in the corner, you have to sacrifice the help defense to stay on that one guy

  • Sergio Balderas

    That comeback at the end really got me pumped. Win or loss, against the team with the best record in the NBA, Nuggets held really tight when they got their game together. I’m loving Aaron Brooks, this guy has definitely stepped it up since getting the bigger role he’s had in Denver.

  • disqus_Zof8sHWvOp

    its over for Denver if Faried is the best player