"Yeah. We quit. Everybody."...

So said Carmelo Anthony after the Nuggets most humiliating big game loss in a season full of humiliating big game losses when the Nuggets lost 102-84 at home to the Lakers in Game 3 of the playoffs yesterday.

Normally I'd appreciate Melo's sudden candor - which is quite a departure from his historically delusional quotes like: "Nobody can say that I don't make my teammates better" or "Can't nobody question how hard I'm out there playing" - but it's about 85 games too late to be taken with any sense of sincerity or seriousness whatsoever.

Just like it was 85 games too late for head coach George Karl to be taking Allen Iverson out of a game for not delivering him the "answers" he was looking for.

And it's 85 games too late to try to figure out how to win this playoff series.

Once again, Coach Karl and the Nuggets players shamefully violated the Number One Rule of sports fandom: they cared less about the outcome of the game than the fans did. While they get paid millions of dollars to play the game, we pay millions of dollars (collectively, of course) to watch them. This is why I don't blame half of the Pepsi Center attendees from vacating the premises as early yesterday. Coach Karl and the players didn't deserve one more minute of our support, just like Kroenke Sports Enterprises didn't deserve one more nickel from us at the concession stand or the team store.

As Mike Fratello apparently said during the TNT broadcast of the game, players have to earn the passion of the fans - it's not to be assumed or taken for granted.

The Nuggets coach and players earned nothing from us today. Nothing. Zero. Zilch. Nada.

But even though the Nuggets coach and players likely won't win another game this year - nor will they win a playoff series (for the fifth consecutive season) - they at the very least owe us fans a tremendous effort in Game 4.

Because as much as we all love Rocky, he's not worth $132 a ticket.*


*Although in fairness to Rocky, he's pretty damn close!

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