Oh my god. I can't take it. I've cracked up. Tonight's loss ended a series of games where the Nuggets looked progressively worse and worse. I just... Nuggets lose 117-90 and it's one of those few times where the score accurately describes the game that unfolded.
What can you do? I mean, seriously. What can you do. A calamitous series of events that began with point guard Nate Robinson's ACL injury versus the Charlotte Bobcats two weeks ago has culminated in the riotous team you have assembled before you. A ragtag group of players that either lack the talent to get themselves over the hump, or are just checked out. This is one of those rare occasions where I sincerely hope it's the latter.
Stats don't matter in this game. Until the Nuggets get Ty Lawson back from injury, and lets face it, even WHEN he comes back ... there are issues that this team has that go far, far beyond simple coaching, lack of talent, or what have you. The Denver Nuggets as currently assembled seriously have problems.
If I was to pull one small crumb of good information from tonight's debacle it would be Jordan Hamilton's night. I felt very good watching JHam on the court, getting a chance to shine in a major capacity on the court tonight. While others seemed in a far distant place, likely a result of their souls leaving their body, JHam played hard and seemed like he definitely cared what was going on out there. He finished with 16 points 7 assists and 6 rebounds. It was good to see
Wilson Chandler continued his solid play, but even he seemed ... resigned. He finished with 12 points and 8 rebounds. Outside of that the Nuggets were just a mess. J.J. Hickson finished with 14 points and 13 rebounds but they were extremely empty statistics. He didn't seem to impact the game in any meaningful way, and the Nuggets interior defense was like Swiss cheese. This includes the likes of the normally reliable Darrell Arthur and Timofey Mozgov.
In the grand scheme of things, the Nuggets lack of defense (which has been progressively worse and worse) is a greater indication of where their minds are at than any missed opportunities on offense. Defense is all about effort, and basically the Timberwolves were getting whatever they wanted. It was troubling to watch to say the least.
Nuggets of Wisdom
The last four games before the All-Star break have been progressively more bleak. Not because the Nuggets lost, but because it looked like they progressively lost heart. I don't like seeing at team just look the other way and not give the effort. They had SOME effort tonight, but the team just looked disheartened.
Ty Lawson coming back wont fix the Nuggets issues. Remember, they lost by 27 to the Knicks before Ty was injured. This team needs additional point guards fast...like, NOW. The development of crucial players on this roster depends on getting a floor general, particularly with the type of offense that coach Brian Shaw seems to want to run. The lack of Point Guard, even one that is a back up, hinders the development of players like Evan Fournier and even Quincy Miller ... who have been largely asked to play out of position because the team lacks a floor general.
This must be remedied. Forget winning, for development's sake this team needs a trade and fast. No telling what will happen during the All Star break and the run up to next week's trade deadline ... but one thing is clear, the Nuggets aren't a playoff team.