Sunday, February 19, 2012

Denver Nuggets: HeartBreak Hotel

This was the definition of this game.

 Due to past game play of the Mile High squad, I wanted to believe Denver would come out tough, offensively passionate, rebounding, running, defending, but, somehow, in my calculated head, I thought this was wishful thinking. Boy, was I wrong and that's what makes this loss hurt, that much more, for me. They rose my hopes up against a TITLE CONTENDING team, nonetheless, and when things fell apart down the stretch and during overtime didn't go Denver's way, it was HEARTBREAK HOTEL!

Denver was sunk by the OKC Thunder, 124 - 118. I should rephrase that, Denver was sunk by Russell Westbrook(40) and Kevin Durant who (51),combined, had 91 points. The last time any NBA duo has had a 40 and 50 games was way back in 1983 where , ironically enough, Denver's Alex English (47) and Kiki (51) accomplished this feat.

It's easy, in hindsight, to tear apart every minute detail: missed Free Throws, turnovers, settling for 3-pointers, screens, George Karl's coaching and OH!, defense. The fact of the matter is Denver put on a SHOW against THE powerhouse team of the west! It doesn't cure the heartbreak, but it does help the rationality of the loss.

Arron Afflalo led the Nuggets with 27 points, but it was on 10-for-21 shooting, 2-for-6 from downtown, 7 rebounds, 5 assists, but 3 turnovers. Yes, he made points, hustled hard, but settling for shots will not win games against title contending games. Ty Lawon had 17 points on 8-for-17 points, 4 rebounds and 7 assists. However, after Kevin Durant's 3-pointer at 30 seconds, Ty shot, which still baffles me, a three pointer with 7.9 seconds remaining, when he could have attacked a rim.

What about Andre Miller?!?! His play just frustrates me at times, he makes consecutive points, isn't much of a defender, but he gives a viewer hope, but then he has back-to-back turnovers which directly result in points for the Thunder in overtime. This is where Coach Karl, as stubborn as he is, has to re-evaluate his lineups and the lack of not running plays in the final minutes.

Al Harrington, it was fun while it lasted, but your minutes need to go by the wayside. Sure he had 11 rebounds, awesome, but at the same time his 3-for-9 shooting leaves that nasty taste in my mouth. It was evident, that Faried and Kosta can take a portion of his minutes and put them to good use. Oh, yeah, they play defense too.

Other Game Observations:

  • Denver out rebounded OKC 51- 44
  • Had more fast-break points: 18-17
  • More points in the paint: 72-46
  • Denver had so much EFFORT, RUN and PASSION tonight
  • They still lack a closer, something George Karl HAS to issue
  • Brightside, Kevin Durant is just one helluva ball player. 
  • 5 turnovers in OT sealed Denver's fate
  • DEFENSE IS AN ISSUE, ONCE AGAIN, IN THE CLOSING MINUTES (KD's dunk right past Bird is a prime example).
  • Wilson Chandler can't come soon enough; post and perimeter player who can create his own shot
Denver has lost 8 of their last 10 and many being 1 to 2 possession games, the urgency is there for George Karl to address.

Maybe I'm being Brightside Betty, but I am proud of the way the players came out tonight, not what I expected, but it's still a heartbreak hotel loss.

Chalk it up to a morale victory, it's something I'm taking solace in.

EASILY, the best game of the year .........

Too bad Denver let this one get away from them.

Until next time,

Mrs. NBA

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