Denver's five game win streak came to an end tonight as the Nuggets fell to a white-hot shooting Phoenix Suns team, 120-112. The Suns shot over 50% not just from the field, but also from beyond the three point line knocking down 13 of their 25 attempts. Gerald Green came off the bench to lead all scorers with 24 points. He hit three of his six three pointers in the third quarter to spur the Suns to a healthy lead they would never relinquish.
Denver was able to hang with the fast paced, high scoring Suns in the first half. At halftime the game was tied. But on the second night of a back to back, the Nuggets ran out of gas, if not effort. By the fourth quarter, the Nuggets were pressing on offense which lead to turnovers and forced shots. The spacing late in the game was non-existent for the Denver offense. Meanwhile the rested Suns did not let up and seemed to knock down every shot no matter how tight the defender played their shooters.
Phoenix should have won this game based on the schedule, but Denver didn't have to keep it as close as they did. Ty Lawson was still able to create as much for his teammates as he was for himself. Timofey Mozgov was still a force on the offensive glass. Denver was able to get to the free throw line 34 times. There was a lot to like about tonight, even with the loss. The rematch on Friday in Denver should be a treat.
Danilo Gallinari only played 9 minutes due to knee soreness. It's easy to explain away any worry based on the schedule, so let's hope it is just that and he is back after the day off Thursday.
Ty continues to dish it out. Lawson is now 2nd in the NBA in assists per game, averaging 9.8
"Kenneth, our lives are in your hands and you've got Butterfingers!?" The Manimal had 5 turnovers and multiple lost rebounds. His ball handling leaves much to be desired.
Wilson Chandler continued rolling with 19 points and 7 boards, however he was a team low -13 in +/-
Tonight was a night we could have used a surge by Nate Robinson. He shot 1-7 from three, matching Ty Lawson. He has yet to go off in a game this year. I sense it could come any game now.
Denver's bench was outscored 44-32. Alex Len was extremely efficient in limited time, scoring 8 points in 3 minutes of the first quarter. Denver takes pride in their depth, but they were out played tonight. If the Nuggs can keep Len in check and limit Green's production, if only through law of averages, on Friday vengeance will be their's.
Have a happy Thanksgiving!