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Nuggets coach Michael Malone on the Lowe Post Podcast

The Denver Nuggets head coach sat down with Zach Lowe to talk about coaching, the Nuggets, and more.

Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

For the two or three of you that somehow don't know, Zach Lowe is the best basketball writer on the planet and, according to Slate, the best American sports writer. Period. End of sentence. He also hosts a phenomenal podcast for ESPN creatively titled "The Lowe Post." Today, he had Nuggets head coach Michael Malone on to talk about...well...everything.

On being fire from Sacramento

My wife is very, very mild mannered but when I called her that night when I got fired, she was very emotional and angry. And I get it. And I told my daughters that next morning before they went to school that I would never allow for them to hear it from someone else before they hear it from me. And they were devastated and crying and they didn't want to go t school. And I said, 'no you're going to go to school and hold your head up high.' This is part of my job, unfortunately.

On working with Josh Kroenke and Tim Connelly

Working with an owner like Josh Kroenke is amazing, and Tim Connelly. Where I can honestly say to you that we have great communication and we're honest with each other but we're aligned with what we're trying to do.

On the Jokic/Nurkic combo

For the last five games of the year we said 'let's see if Nikola and Jusuf can play together.' And what are the pros and what are the cons and something we can look to years going forward. There were some great moments and there were some moments where we said 'I'm not really sure.' As I've looked at it and we've talked about it over the summertime, you have two unique bigs and most of the NBA is going away from that. The rest of the league is going small ball, Steve Kerr and the Warriors had their death lineup and you keep playing the small forward at the center position. But what I love about Jokic and Nurkic is that they are both very skilled, are very good passers. Jokic can step out and shoot the three, he shot 33% from there last year as a rookie on his way to becoming a first team all-rookie player....

...Offensively I there's no problems playing them together. I really don't. Defensively was my biggest concern. Can Nikola Jokic guard stretch fours? Can he guard smaller, athletic fours away from the basket? That's something that we've talked about, we've addressed and just trying to make sure that, not only do we work on him getting stronger and his body but also working on his quickness and foot speed because he did a good job of guarding the interior for us like when we beat San Antonio at home. He struggled a little bit when he had to guard a stretch four who he had to close out on the perimeter and run him off of the line.

On Jusuf Nurkic's sophomore year and struggles

It was a very tough season for him, a very frustrating season for him. And understandably so. Coming off a rookie season where there was so much promise and so much talk and then the injury doesn't allow him to have the same type of output in year two.

I have to say he has been terrific. His work ethic, his body. One thing I love about Nurk, as he's lost this weight and he's getting in unbelievable shape as he's playing for the Bosnian national team this summer, he's wearing tighter and tighter clothes just to show everybody how good of shape he's in.

I'm actually going to fly over to Bosnia in a couple of weeks to watch him play as they try to qualify for next year's European championships...just a way to show him how much I believe in him and support him.

There is a lot of good stuff in the podcast. Check it out!