After the conclusion of the 82-game, 2012-13 season, could two seemingly meaningless open-season losses to a depleted Philadelphia 76ers team and a talent-gutted Orlando Magic team bite our Denver Nuggets in the ass?

You bet.

As my colleague Nate Timmons said to me at the conclusion of Saturday’s Stiffs Night Out, the Nuggets’ 119-116 loss to the NBA Champion Miami Heat – in Miami – could be considered “a good loss” and I completely agree.

But I would argue that the losses to an Andrew Bynum-less 76ers team and lottery-bound Magic team are "bad losses." Bad, bad, bad losses. (Those who have followed this blog for years have probably heard my rant before distinguishing between "good losses" and "bad losses.")

Bad losses are, of course, the games you should win. But worse than that, they seem to be the games that cost you a playoff seed, or home court advantage in the playoffs, etc.

Come April, when the Nuggets are fighting neck and neck with their Western Conference cohorts for a three, four or five seed in the playoffs, it will be losses like these that head coach George Karl and his Nuggets players will wish they had back. In the past, Karl himself has said that his team has to learn to respect the regular season if they’re to achieve home court advantage for the first round of the post-season.

Other than Saturday night in Miami, our Nuggets haven't respected the regular season thus far. With a few home games to be played this week, perhaps that will change.

On to the links …

LaPhonso Ellis, former Nuggets great, returning to Denver | Nuggets Ink — The Denver Post
My all-time favorite Nugget, LaPhonso Ellis, will be honored before tipoff on Tuesday.

Antonio McDyess considering return to NBA – Yahoo! Sports
Adrian Wojnaworski reports that the former Nuggets power forward is gauging interest from NBA teams.

Nuggets lose to Heat as Ray Allen hits 4-point play in final seconds – The Denver Post
Benjamin Hochman recaps the Nuggets’ heartbreaking loss in Miami.

Mile High Sports | Goodman: George Karl needs to stop the excuses
Eric Goodman writes that the heat is on Coach Karl to deliver playoff success this season.

Nuggets rookie Evan Fournier captivates late-night audience | THE OFFICIAL SITE OF THE DENVER NUGGETS
Aaron Lopez writes that Evan Fournier’s parents are following the rookie live … from France.