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Game 75 preview: Knicks vs. Nuggets

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When I'm enjoying a sub-sandwich, as I get close to finishing that bad boy off I typically start looking for the best remaining bites. I never want my last bite to be just bread. So what I'll do is turn that sub around so that perhaps I can have a couple last enjoyable moments with my sandwich.

Sort of disturbing I know, but I'll bet some of you do the same thing.

Now the last bite is pretty darn important. You don't want to make some rookie mistakes. For instance, if you just plow straight through the sandwich your best bites will be behind you and like I stated above you'll be left with the bread bite. The worst possible outcome to any sandwich eating experience.

Now, if you take a little bit of time to turn that sandwich around you can really help yourself out and get another 2-3 delicious bits of sandwich and really set yourself up for success.

Now to get to those scrumptious remaining bites you have to go through the all-bread bite, which nobody really likes, but what you are left with can be quite fantastic!

I'm sort of feeling this way about the Nuggets finishing up the season. We've been through the all-bread bite, which was the 11 game 3-8 stretch that started Feb. 20th in Chicago and didn't end until a win against the Thunder on March 11th.

Starting with that Thunder win the Nuggets have been enjoying the last remaining bites of their season (the remaining sub-sandwich). Denver is 8-1 since March 11th and playing great team basketball once again. Things feel like they did during much of the season and the 11 game stink fest was the horrible all-bread bite.

The team is clicking at just the right time and Nene is back patrolling the paint after his brief two-game suspension (in which the Nuggets went 2-0). Nene went right back to work against the Warriors with 8 points on 4-5 shooting and grabbed 7 rebounds in just 24 minutes.

Since the Nuggets were able to go 2-0 during his suspension I think we can now look back on it and say, "Well that was a nice rest for the Big Guy right before the playoffs."

The Nuggets will be taking on a Knicks team (29-45 ... 10-26 on the road) that still has some fight left in them. New York will be playing their fourth game in five nights and should be ripe for the plucking.

The Knicks hung tough in Utah last night and even held a lead of 93-92 with 7:05 remaining in the game. The Jazz outscored them 20-11 and won the game 112-104, but after watching the post-game highlights I didn't see any quit in the Knicks.

In their last three games the Knicks beat the Hornets in New York, lost in Charlotte, and lost in Utah last night after giving the Jazz a scare.

Once again the Nuggets will need to come out with focus on defense and a willingness to share the ball on offense. Denver has been shooting very well as of late and I would like to see the offense take the ball to the rim as much as they can. Don't rely on jumpers tonight and don't overlook the Knicks.

Al Harrington averages 20 ppg for the Knicks and can light it up on any night. The double-double machine David Lee (16.1 ppg / 11.9 rpg) will be in action. Lee notched a double-double in all 13 Knicks games in February. Larry Hughes and Nate Robinson can also catch fire on offense if Denver's defensive effort is lacking.

Only 2 1/2 games separate the #2 seed and the #7 seed. The Nuggets can get the #2 seed as they sit just half a game behind the Spurs. Keep winning Nuggets ... let's all enjoy this last bite before the playoffs.

 

Pregame Notes:

  • On Denver's three-game win streak Melo is averaging 34.3 points per game ... he averages 22.8 ppg on the season
  • Melo is 6-12 from beyond the arc on Denver's current win streak (50%) ... he's shooting 39% on the season and 31% in his career from distance
  • Renaldo Balkman hasn't snagged an offensive rebound on Denver's current three-game win streak

 

--Nene fires back at Admundson

In Denver Times writer Chris Tomasson interviewed Nene about the suspension and got his take on Phoenix forward Louis Admundson. Excuse Nene's English a bit, but he still had some harsh words for the "nobody."

 

--Denver Post columnist Jim Armstrong looks at Melo's playoff hurdle.

 

--Billups talks about his role with the Nuggets, as told to Chris Dempsey

 

--Nobody panic ... Sonny Weems has been recalled from the 14ers

 

 

ntimmons73@yahoo.com (Nate)