|Game 67: 2014-15 NBA Season|
|Series 2-1 Nugs|
|March 13th, 2015|
|Smoothie King Center - NOLA
|4:00 PM MT|
|Altitude / 104.3 FM
|Ty Lawson||PG||Tyreke Evans|
|Gary Harris||SG||Eric Gordon|
|Danilo Gallinari||SF||Quincy Pondexter|
|Kenneth Faried||PF||Anthony Davis|
|Jusuf Nurkic||C||Omer Asik|
|Denver Stiffs||Blogs||The Bird Writes|
Darrell Arthur, Randy Foye, Wilson Chandler are all out
Jrue Holiday (stress reaction - lower right leg) and Ryan Anderson (right MCL sprain) are OUT. Tyreke Evans (left ankle sprain) is PROBABLE.
|Who will start for the Nuggets?||Etc...||Watch Anthony Davis.|
Did you know the Pelicans haven't played a game since Tuesday, March 10th? Does that seem bizarre to anyone else? Somebody get Skynet on the phone and ask them what's up with the NBA schedule makers! Skynet? Yes, Skynet is likely now running things. How else can you explain the Terminator like performances from Anthony Davis this season? The guy is unstoppable.
There was a reason George Karl once lit up like a Christmas Tree when we talked to him about Davis, back when Karl was still coaching the Nuggets and the two teams were getting ready to square off. Davis is averaging, AVERAGING, 24.5 points, 10.3 rebounds, and 2.8 blocks this season. Through the five games he's played in March, Davis decided to up the Ante and is averaging 29.8 points, 10.6 rebounds, and 4.2 blocks - to go along with 3.2 assists and 1 steal.
Davis is the reason that Nuggets Nation is so divided, and it is divided ... to a degree. At just 22 years-old currently, Davis was the 1st overall pick of the 2012 draft and he has transformed the Pelicans since the departure of Chris Paul. At 36-29, the Pels are just a half game out of the playoff race in the Western Conference, behind the Oklahoma City Thunder. Davis represents the promise of the top of the NBA Lottery, a place that Nuggets head coach Melvin Hunt is taking his team away from.
Under Hunt, the Nuggets are 5-2 and are again playing modern style basketball (or throwback late 1960s, early 70s Knicks basketball). There is ball movement, player movement, and an emphasis on having fun and flying around on both ends of the floor. The Knicks played somewhat similarly to that style with Willis Reed, Bill Bradley, Walt Frasier, and Co.
Check out some of these Tweets from our guy Adam Mares:
Play of the game in last night's win over the Warriors. Watch Nelson point at Melvin Hunt right afterward too! https://t.co/SqNpf1MrB1— Adam Mares (@Adam_Mares) March 14, 2015
Wilson Chandler eFG% Jan 1 - Mar 3 (Shaw) 47% Mar 4 - Mar 14 (Hunt) 63.3%— Adam Mares (@Adam_Mares) March 14, 2015
Wilson Chandler 3FG% Jan 1 - Mar 3 (Shaw) 29.2% Mar 4 - Mar 14 (Hunt) 47.4%— Adam Mares (@Adam_Mares) March 14, 2015
What the above represent to me is Hunt getting the Nuggets to play a style that leads to easy buckets. It has been fun to see, but while the wins pile up the draft pick decreases (and the chances for lottery combinations decreases too). As my colleague Andrew Feinstein said today, we can't have it both ways. If you wanted Brian Shaw gone, you have to be okay with what the team is doing now. Keeping a guy in place just to lose games is cheating the game.
While the Nuggets currently sit in the 8th draft slot, they are only one win and three losses "ahead" of the Brooklyn Nets (their pick could go to the Atlanta Hawks - Pistons with Darko Milicic-like?) for the 9th slot.
But the Nuggets might be doing themselves a favor by resting some guys for today's game:
#Nuggets are joining the teams randomly resting players. Darrell Arthur, Wilson Chandler & Randy Foye are being held out of today's game.— Chris Dempsey (@dempseypost) March 15, 2015
I can actually say that being in the locker room recently, the nagging injuries are catching up with some Nuggets. Darrell Arthur and Randy Foye have been dealing with injuries all season. Wilson Chandler can be seen icing his left knee heavily after many recent contests. Credit Kenneth Faried for playing with kinesiology tape on his right shoulder. His shoulder has really been hurting him (heavy ice and wrapped after games), you can tell. But he told me the kinesiology tape really helps ease the pain during games and he even leaves it on for a while after games.
It's a crazy time to be a Nuggets fan, and this five game road trip will be fun to watch. Starting in a couple hours against the Pelicans.