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Denver Nuggets: The times, they are a-changin'

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Hope and melancholy over a series of changes has one Stiff in a reflective mood

One of many changes for this season's Nuggets, at the far end of the bench - Coach Michael Malone
One of many changes for this season's Nuggets, at the far end of the bench - Coach Michael Malone
Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

I started out spoiled.

For the eight years I spent in Los Angeles as a kid, my then-hometown Dodgers had the same infield: Steve Garvey, Davey Lopes, Bill Russell, and Ron Cey. Their tenure in L.A. outlasted mine by six months, and I grew up positive that great teams like that were built to last. I think if you'd asked me then if I'd still be watching that crew play into my 40s, I'd have been confused as to why I wouldn't be. Turns out that infield would be the longest-running in the history of the sport.

In the long run, such things are not built to last. Not in life, families, relationships or sports. As was well chronicled by our dear friend Nate Timmons this past week, he's on his way to new adventures. A beloved member of the Denver Stiffs family, Nate has moved on to try his hand at another assignment. His departure will be deeply felt by the Stiffs writing crew and readership. Nate is a good friend and writer, and a dyed-in-the-wool Nuggets geek. As it always goes, not even wonderful things last forever. However, the guys remaining on the site are excited to try and make it into something even better and stronger as we move forward. Turns out, I started out spoiled with the Denver Stiffs as well.

It doesn't stop there. As was (possibly over) covered in these pages, there have been some personnel changes amongst your dear Denver Nuggets these past couple of seasons as well. Ty Lawson, Arron Afflalo, Timofey Mozgov, Nate Robinson, JaVale McGee, Aaron Brooks, Evan Fournier, Jordan Hamilton, Andre Miller, Quincy Miller, Anthony Randolph, Jan Vesely, Brian Shaw, and Melvin Hunt have all departed the team in the last two seasons, with the requisite number of bodies flowing in to fill those spots as well.

Even your favorite Nuggets squads were shorter-lived than your fond memories will recall. Carmelo Anthony, Chauncey Billups, and Kenyon Martin? Two and a half seasons together. Dikembe Mutombo, LaPhonso Ellis, and Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf? Almost four seasons together, but with injuries plaguing all three, Ellis especially. Alex English, Dan Issel, and Kiki Vandeweghe had four seasons together, with English and Issel sharing one more campaign before the Horse rode off into the sunset.

There's an old saying in Colorado when voicing your displeasure for the weather conditions, "wait 15 minutes, and it will change". That saying seems to apply to more and more facets of my life as I go along. Please pay close attention to the beautiful and horrible things that come about for your team this season, Nuggets Nation. The only thing for certain is that however they go, they'll never be the same again. The times, they are a-changin'.

Treasure this day, and treasure yourself. Truly, neither will ever happen again.

Ray Bradbury

P.S. Thanks again for making me a Stiff, Nate Timmons. I owe you one. Good luck out there.