Leading up to Thursday’s 1 p.m. (MST) trade deadline, not all is quiet on the Nuggets front. While it’s certainly wise to take Adrian Wojnarowski at his word when he recently said the Nuggets would stand pat at the deadline (I mean, really, when was the last time this guy was wrong about a trade rumor?), it’s equally unwise to support the notion that the Nuggets won’t even consider a minor move, especially given how much Timofey Mozgov’s name has been thrown about lately. Whatever the case may be, rumors will remain rumors and we’d all be lying through our teeth if we said we don’t eat them up with a voracious appetite. So, to satisfy your trade-rumor cravings, here is a short list of what people are talking about right now.
|Nene, C 45 MIN | 5-13 FG | 2-6 FT | 13 REB | 5 AST | 12 PTS | +3
Made the two biggest free throws of the year after going 0-4 from the line to start the game. Nene routinely found himself on smaller players and was not as aggressive as he was against Philadelphia. You can’t deny his improved rebounding and despite some trouble guarding the rim, he played very respectable late in the game when it mattered most.
|Danilo Gallinari, SF 52 MIN | 9-19 FG | 18-20 FT | 11 REB | 2 AST | 37 PTS | +5
Incredible. 37 points on 19 shots. Did not even play his best game and clearly didn’t have his legs under him as he settled for too many long two pointers. Outplayed everyone else on the floor and is making me rethink my assessment of Gallo having true star potential. His game was so good I don’t have any room left to gush about his phenomenal defensive performance against Melo.
|Timofey Mozgov, C 30 MIN | 6-11 FG | 4-4 FT | 7 REB | 1 AST | 16 PTS | +5
Deserves minutes, and thankfully he’s finally getting them. Tyson Chandler turned in dominant rebounding performances his past two games and was a non-factor against the shorthanded Nuggets. Mozgov scored 16 points, but his true impact came on the defensive end where he stayed on his feet and routinely rescued his teammates from getting beat and giving up layups.
|Andre Miller, PG 49 MIN | 6-14 FG | 1-1 FT | 4 REB | 12 AST | 14 PTS | +6
I know, everyone deserves a great grade for this one, right? I really didn’t like much about Andre’s play through more than half of the contest. Then, he goes all Philadelphia 76ers and throws in the most amazing basket of the season to seal the win. He inbounded the ball perfectly three separate times on crucial possessions late. Miller honestly didn’t play great but had an easy double double. Miller’s poise is what makes him shine.
|Ty Lawson, PG 49 MIN | 3-12 FG | 4-7 FT | 8 REB | 7 AST | 10 PTS | +8
He was a spectator in the win. I hate being so hard on a Nuggets player in such a great win, but I have never been more disappointed in Ty. He made only three shots, all of them assisted by others who fed him wide open looks. Ty needs to be better. He did not hit free throws down the stretch, failed to stay in front of the Knicks guards and allowed rookie Iman Shumpert to get the best of him. Ty’s numbers were fine but the boxscore belies the fact he had no impact on the win. I don’t grade the boxscores.
|Al Harrington, PF 41 MIN | 10-24 FG | 0-1 FT | 11 REB | 1 AST | 24 PTS | +2
Al Buckets did it again. After a dreadful start he might have been benched by a lot of other coaches in this league. Harrington delivered in the clutch yet again hitting most every big basket down the stretch. He scored 15 points in the fourth quarter and exuded nothing but confidence when it looked like Denver was going to lose.
|Corey Brewer, SF 25 MIN | 2-5 FG | 2-4 FT | 4 REB | 1 AST | 6 PTS | -4
You can’t ask for much more from Brewer in the limited minutes he received. He came in for defensive purposes late and forced Melo into a difficult shot he had no business attempting. Melo made it and Brewer learned the valuable lesson that sometimes it does not matter how well you play defense. Brewer ultimately didn’t have more of an impact because he was extremely clumsy on the offensive end, where he still needs to prove his worth.
ESPN recently concluded an extremely arduous process of codifying the NBA’s best 500 players. Our fellow TrueHoop family was highly involved in the process, sending in ballots, backing up their claims in the 5-on-5 series and explaining how certain elements weighed more heavily in their decision-making via video interviews which aired on the front page of the four-letter network’s website this past week. From our perspective — being a proud member of the TrueHoop Network — we feel entitled to give a Carmelo Anthony-like tip-of-the-hat to ourselves for all of our efforts, as ranking 500 different players is not an easy task; however, we conversely feel that it is our job to specifically analyze those players we know best, and determine if their individual Top 500 rankings are accurate in order to further understand how we can get better for next year. Including current free agents, the Denver Nuggets saw a whopping 16 players make their way to the #NBArank list. Whether they managed to land in the right spot is up for debate. In Part 1 of this series we’ll take a look at the Nuggets who landed outside of the Top 100. (more…)
With the 2011 NBA Draft only hours away, things are starting to heat up, as the Nuggets have reportedly increased its desire to trade Felton for a top 10 pick. (more…)
With the NBA Draft now less than a week away, it’s time Roundball Mining Co. unveils it’s top ten prospects, ranked in order, from the one guy fans should be dying to get, to just a flat-out solid prospect. Factors included in determining the player-rankings were mostly size, potential, athleticism and overall skill level. Keep in mind, all the players codified in this post are ones that will likely be available when the Nuggets select at No. 22. You won’t find Bismack Biyombo on this list, because 21 NBA teams are smarter than to pass up on a guy that talented, even if he is 24-years-old. So, without further ado, I give you the official Denver Nuggets Big Board 2.0! (more…)
In the upcoming Draft, the Denver Nuggets will likely steer towards selecting the best player available at No. 22, with small forward being the exception due to the current bounty already on the roster (Gallinari, Chandler & Harrington). Exercising this strategy means putting the franchise at risk of potentially taking a player who doesn’t necessarily fit a position of need. With Ty Lawson appearing to be the perpetual starting point guard of the Nuggets for years to come and Raymond Felton still on the roster (nominally, at least), the demand for another point guard isn’t quite a Mile High right now in Denver. But what happens if the best player available at No. 22 just-so-happens to be a point guard? Do we take that player and groom him into a back-up behind Lawson, who similarly played this exact role behind Billups? Or do forgo this opportunity in order to address a more pressing position of need? It’s tough to say, but just in case this situation plays out on draft night, Roundball has you covered as to which players might pose this conundrum, and which — if any — are worthy of selecting. (more…)
Ryan Feldman of The Hoops Report: “Source at Nuggets draft workout on Wednesday told me Iman Shumpert showed off his crazy athleticism and nice mid-range jumper.”
My take: Shumpert is gaining some momentum with Nuggets fans as a popular J.R. replacement, and this showing should benefit his case. He tested out as basically the most athletic guy at the Combine and will likely rely on his supreme physical talent to up his draft stock. At a little over 6-foot-4 with a giant 6-foot-10 wingspan and incredible leaping ability, Shumpert will likely play the role of a combo guard his first few years in the league until he firmly establishes a position he feels comfortable with.
Vucevic, if you remember, was a guy I recently ranked 5th on the Nuggets Big Board but because of the similar traits to a Nugget already under contract — Timofey Mozgov — I stated that we should probably consider other prospects instead. Well, maybe I was wrong, as it appears he has continued his hot streak of performances under the watchful eye of NBA talent evaluators. It’s nice to know our front office is examining big men, as its a need we certainly should address in some form over the off season, whether it be through the Draft or free agency. The fact that Vucevic outperformed Williams is not a surprise, because keep in mind, this is the same guy who some scouts felt outperformed projected top-five pick, Enes Kanter, recently at the Combine.
The Jimmer quote just makes my head hurt to be honest. I’m not a fan of coaches interfering with the job general managers and scouts do. I think coaches often times have motives behind their evaluations where as scouts and general managers simply evaluate talent. Though I’d agree that Jimmer wouldn’t be the ideal pick at 22 (he’ll be gone before then anyways so it doesn’t really matter), I also don’t think we should bend our considerations based on what coach Karl thinks of him. Last I checked, this was the same coach Karl that vetoed a Linas Kleiza for David Lee trade a few years back. Just sayin’.
Though this is strictly a Denver Nuggets-themed blog, I don’t think I’d be going to far as to say most of the our readers are likely going to be watching the Mavericks and Heat go at it in the 2011 NBA Finals this year. So, Roundball Mining Company has dug up an assortment of different links to help you further get acquainted with the nuances of this historic series. (more…)