And "S" is for "Steam". As in, this post is how I'm going to blow off some steam.
Follow below the fold for my take on tonight's game and the state of our beloved maddening Nuggets, "Sesame Street Alphabet" style.
"P" is for "Pass"
As in, the thing we've forgotten how to do. I'm looking at you, Chauncey. I also blame the coaches, because they apparently have failed to remind the boys that passing is legal in the NBA. We seem to be existing in some bizarro world universe where the entire team is of the mind that passing is not allowed. And that it's an exceedingly fantastic idea, if you happen to find yourself with the ball on the offensive end, to dribble around for 15 seconds before hoisting up a shot uglier than a red-headed stepchild could muster (Oh wait, Matt Bonner actually makes his shots).
"D" is for "Ole!"
Wait a second, "D" is for "Defense". As in, the other important thing the Denver Nuggets have forgotten. We should have an official nickname for this game, I submit "Memento" as the moniker that fits best. I'm referring to that movie where that guy forgets everything about his life, and nothing makes sense for a while, and he doesn't really know why. We could even sum up this whole Nuggets season as a "Memento" moment, or at least when we forget to show up for games we should win.
Here is a summary I stole from a website of the movie "Memento", in case you haven't seen it...
Leonard Shelby has lost his short-term memory due to a brain trauma, he cannot make new memories any more. His wife was killed by robbers, and despite his state he wants to track down the murderer and kill him. He uses photographs and tattoos on his body to make himself remember some important facts.
Apparently, this very thing has eerily happened to every member of the Nugget's organization. You would think with all the pictures people take of the team, and the sheer number of tattoos on their bodies, the team would remember how to play basketball. Apparently not.
"E" is for "Energy"
As in, that thing I can't recognize because I haven't seen it in so long. Like my first dog.
Are there any science-types around here that can tell me what the opposite of energy is? I would like to think the answer is a black-hole. If so, there is one settled over the Pepsi Center like that pesky rain cloud that followed Pooh Bear around for a while. And like that rain cloud, this black-hole follows the team on road trips too, sucking all energy out of the team.
"C" is for "Coaching"
As in, that thing we desperately need. I haven't seen a coach on our bench in what seems to be a disturbingly long period of time. During games, the camera continually pans to a man who sits on the bench. It is unclear whether this man is alive or dead. He rarely moves, and never shows emotion.
I have thought long and hard about who this man could be, and I have come to the conclusion that he is a headhunter. No, not like a movie headhunter, he's not trying to kill anybody, a professional headhunter is what I mean. I think Kroenke has hired this guy to find a replacement coach for George Karl (Who is sorely missed, and best wishes to him as well), and for whatever reason, instead of receiving payment in return for his headhunting services, he only asks for a spot on the bench during every game.
This presents a paradox of sorts, because if Kroenke is willing to give this "mystery man headhunter" a prized spot on the bench, he must be very good at his job. However, this same man has been on the bench for a long while now, and has seemingly made no progress in finding a suitable candidate to coach the team, which makes it seem like he is not so good at his job. Baffling.
All kidding aside, I find it next to impossible to put any sort of faith into Adrian Dantley as acting head coach of the Nuggets. His player rotations are atrocious, he seems to be incapable of injecting energy into the squad, he refuses to work the refs, and again, I'm unsure if his heart is still beating. The only remedy, and consequently the only hope for the playoffs? Big George. We need you buddy. Get well soon, come back and lead us to glory, or at least non-embarrassment.
"L" is for "Lawsome"
As in, the word we made up for Ty Lawson. A hybrid word combing "Lawson" and "awesome". I think that nickname is frawsome, which is another word I just made up, a hybrid word combining "friggin" and "awesome".
Once upon a time, at the beginning of the season, the Nuggets were able to play an exciting, blindingly fast rookie who pushed the pace of the game and was THE perfect guy to bring in to rest the aging Billups. However, "Memento" has set in, and this young speedster has been forgotten, and is no longer allowed to play. The reasons why are unclear, but my only suggestion is that Dantley make a visit to the tattoo parlor and try his hardest to remember that Lawsome is really, really good, and that he should actually get some playing time.
"I" is for "Intelligence"
As in, that thing our point guard has forgotten. That's right, I'm looking at you again, Chauncey. You see, there was a time not so long ago when I thought our star ball-handler was among the smartest players in the game, an unflappable presence who steered the ship, herded the flock, kept our composure, kept the ducks in a row, and did a number of other very useful and exciting things.
However, I seem to have been very wrong about this. "Memento" strikes again. I never thought I'd see the day where Chauncey can be found guilty of a laundry list of "No-No's" in the same game. I'm going to bust out the handy number function we've been provided for this one. Here are some of the things Billups did tonight:
- Not passing.
- Getting technicals.
- Not passing.
- Forcing bad shots.
- Not passing.
- Playing intermittent defense.
- Not passing.
- Not passing.
As you can see, he did 8 bad things tonight. Not just tonight, but over the last month or so, I have seen a player that looks a lot like Chauncey Billups but doesn't seem to play like Chauncey Billups. Consequently, my inevitable conclusion is that marauding aliens have kidnapped Chauncey, and replaced him with a selfish, ignorant, non-athletic alien slug creature (with a rubber Chauncey suit, of course), who happens to hate Denver, Denver's basketball fans, and anyone who would be negatively affected by our once steady leader of men playing like a chicken with his head cut off.
I hope this changes soon, and you should too. Otherwise, we will return to our "one-and-done" ways when it comes playoff time. I don't miss those days.
"E" is for "Excuses"
As in, those things I am tired of hearing, and also making up in my own mind for the performance of the team this season. Yes, we've had some key injuries that have hampered our performance. Yes, our under appreciated coach is in an awful situation and fighting his butt off to get out of it. And that's about it. There are no excuses for some of the clunker's we have thrown down this season, no excuses for the effort that was put forth tonight. The team lacks motivation, resolve, drive, focus, tenacity, camaraderie, and a lot of other "inspirational poster" words I can't think of right now. I don't see how this will change in a week, to the point where we can show up to the playoffs and actually make some noise, but I sure hope it does.
So, in closing, my letters form the word "PDECLIE". Pdeclie? Darn straight. I was thinking about getting really saucy and having the letters form a word, as tends to happen in these sorts of writings. But I decided to draw inspiration from the game tonight, and just put forward a half-assed effort, that ends with confusion and a whimper.
The word of the day is Pdeclie.