A couple of updates on a couple starters for you Denver Nuggets, it sounds like Wilson Chandler could play against the Clippers on Saturday, Oct. 19th in Las Vegas for the team's fourth preseason game. On the other side, Kenneth Faried tweaked him hamstring and will be evaluated Friday, according to the team's Twitter account.
It would be nice to see Chandler out there familiarizing himself with his new teammates and the new offensive and defensive systems. It is still basketball, so whenever Chandler is back in action, he should figure things out quickly. If Faried misses the game, J.J. Hickson could find himself starting his third game in a row at the power forward position.
The debate of Faried vs. Hickson as the team's starting power forward rages on, but like Chris Dempsey said on our podcast Tuesday night, Faried is pretty well entrenched as the team's most popular face and taking away that starting gig would be a risky move. It will be interesting to see if Brian Shaw lets anything other than play on the floor determine his decisions. Basketball wise, Shaw can't really go wrong with starting either guy - they both have a lot of work to do on their games. With both Faried and Hickson being about the same age, the potential for both guys to grow their game is still there. I don't know if moving Faried to the bench would sour him, but like Dempsey writes in a piece today - he does seem to be important to both the Nuggets and to the NBA.
-Would Shaw allow anything or anyone to influence his decisions? Well, from a piece Adrian Wojnarowski recently wrote on Josh Kroenke - there does seem to be some influence from the front office on the team.
The NBA has changed, the dynamic between front offices and coaches forever more tuned together. If Karl's generation represented an old-school division of power, Kroenke has nudged the Nuggets toward a more modern league reality.
"We never want to tell the coach what he has to do: He has to decide the best combinations on the floor, who to play, what to run," he says. "But the best organizations in the NBA have that camaraderie, that cohesion, between the front offices and the coaching staffs. There's so much information available now, and this makes the most sense. It's a good dynamic to have, and you can feel everybody is on the same page here."
It's a little difficult to understand what Josh is saying in that above quote.
"We never want to tell the coach what he has to do..."
and then ...
"But the best organizations in the NBA have that camaraderie, that cohesion, between the front offices and the coaching staffs. There's so much information available now, and this makes the most sense."
Is Kroenke just saying that the communication between the front office and the coaching staff is better now than it was under George Karl? Or is Kroenke saying that the front office has "information" now that could help coaches make decisions on things? For all the "Kroenke wants power!" conspiracy theorists out there - have fun with those quotes.
-Colin Neilson referenced Drew Garrison's piece in his Andre Miller article today. It's well worth your read. I spent time talking hoops with Garrison in Las Vegas at Summer League and he knows his stuff and came up with some good insight on Miller's passing: read it here.
His assist numbers are solid, but not gaudy. The same can't be said for the actual passes.
Take, for instance, his famed full-court dishes. Many players attempt Hail Mary passes, but few players succeed. Miller is poised like a quarterback in the pocket looking downfield for his target and is surprisingly accurate once he puts the ball in the air. Here, Miller launches the pass once he recovers possession, leadingDanilo Gallinari toward the rim:
Garrison's piece includes some awesome picture breakdowns and video.
-As I mentioned after the second Spurs preseason game, Damion James might make this Nuggets team. Shaw is looking for defenders and has shooters in Nate Robinson, Randy Foye, Evan Fournier, and to a degree Quincy Miller (still a raw offensive player) and James fits that mold. Chris Dempsey breaks down how the salary implications would work if Denver were to sever ties with the guaranteed contract of Jordan Hamilton to keep James.
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