Nuggets vs. Clippers Preview: First hoops game ever at Mandalay Bay

Kirby Lee-US PRESSWIRE - Presswire

The Nuggets and Clippers traveled to Las Vegas for tonight's game, the first ever on the Vegas Strip.

2012/2013 NBA Preseason
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October 6th, 2012, 8:30 PM (MT)
Mandalay Bay Events Center, Las Vegas
TV (None in CO) / 950 AM The Fan
Probable Starters
Eric Bledsoe PG Ty Lawson
Jamal Crawford SG Andre Iguodala
Caron Butler SF Danilo Gallinari
Blake Griffin PF Kenneth Faried
DeAndre Jordan C Timofey Mozgov?
Advanced Stats (2011/2012)
89.2 (27th of 30) Pace 94.2 (2nd of 30)
108.5 (4th of 30) ORtg 109.2 (3rd of 30)
105.7 (18th of 30) DRtg 106.2 (20th of 30)

The Story:

The NBA returns to Las Vegas for the first time since the 2007 All-Star game. Well, I guess we should count Summer League - where the NBA is in Vegas every off-season. But this is the first game on the actual Las Vegas Strip. The Mandalay Bay Events Center is typically home to boxing matches and The Ultimate Fighting Championship events. But tonight, the NBA takes over.

The game can be seen on TV if you live in California ... Altitude still is not carrying preseason games. Very frustrating for those in Nuggets Nation.

Chris Paul and Chauncey Billups will be sitting this one out for the Clippers and for the Nuggets: Andre Miller, Julyan Stone, and Wilson Chandler will not play.

What to watch:

-The battle between Kenneth Faried and Blake Griffin should be a good one. In our Q&A with Steve Perrin of Clips Nation, he addressed what Griffin needs to focus on to take another step forward this year. Nuggets fans should focus on Faried and whether or not he's able to incorporate some of his off-season lessons into his game. He said he's been focusing on post-moves, let's see what he has got.

-DeAndre Jordan vs. JaVale McGee. The two centers are both athletically gifted and they will be linked to each other for signing similar contracts the last two off-seasons, Jordan getting $43 million and McGee getting $44 million. The Nuggets' youngster has a fluid aspect to his offensive game that could vault him to elite center status in a hurry, but can he find his offensive touch? We'll find out a little bit of the answer to that tonight.

-Timofey Mozgov ... will he start? How will the young Russian play coming off his Olympic success? I like watching Mozgov play with his aggressive style, but he can get lost in the shuffle and pick up early fouls. What has changed about his game?

-Nuggets wings. The plethora of wings for the Nuggets need to get their shooting touch down in a hurry. It's time to practice the dribble-drive offense and get used to being on the court together. Gallo, Iguodala, Jordan Hamilton (the birthday boy), Corey Brewer, Quincy Miller, and Evan Fournier will all hopefully see a little time - especially with Andre Miller sitting out.

-Lamar Odom and Jamal Crawford. These guys both need big bounce back seasons for the Clippers, how will they play?

Enjoy the game folks - if you are able to watch it!

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