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Thursday, December 9, 2010
Good old Denver Nuggets, the best punk team in the NBA
You have to admire the stubbornness of the Denver Nuggets. They refuse to play defense or any semblance of team basketball and they won't change for their head coach George Karl or just about anybody.
Sure they got to the 2009 Western Conference Finals (where they got smoked by the Los Angeles Lakers) but does anyone not named Lala actually think they have a prayer to get anywhere close to there again? Superstar/dope Carmelo Anthony should be traded any day now (please so we can stop listening to all the rumors) and then they'll go back to the basement of the Western Conference.
Denver (13-8) came to Boston (17-4) last night but were not at full strength as Carmelo sat out with a knee injury (wink wink, sure big guy). Not surprisingly, the Celts rolled to their eighth straight win (the eighth such streak of the Big 3s illustrious tenure in Boston) 105-89.
I'm just glad I didn't shell out money to see Anthony and be left with former UMass star Gary Forbes starting in his place, what a letdown.
Ray Allen led the Celtics with a game-high 28 points while Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett (9 rebounds) both notched 17 points. Rajon Rondo was clearly not himself (limited to four points) but he still had 13 assists against Denver's variation of the Swiss cheese defense.
Boston head coach Doc Rivers had to protect his starters too since they were in the first leg of a back to back. Glen Davis, who should be considered a front-runner for sixth man of the year if he keeps this up, added 16 points, six rebounds and three steals off the bench.
It was good to see college stars can still do things in the NBA as Ty Lawson paced the Nuggets with 24 points and seven assists. J.R. Smith also had 16 points off the bench. The only Denver starters that did anything (and that's being kind) were Arron Afflalo (16 points) and Nene (12 points), who has to be Giselle's favorite NBA player.
The Cs jumped ahead right away, 35-21 after one quarter. Even without Melo, the Nuggets can put up points with the best of them so they closed it to 59-52 at the half.
It wasn't a pretty second half but Boston did enough in the third (21-17) and fourth (25-20) quarters to hop on their charter flight with few worries.
For the game, the Cs shot 55.9% to 42.3% for the Nuggets. Boston made eight more free throws (25-17), rebounds (42-34) and assists (26-18). Denver had five more steals (13-8) but the Celts had a whopping edge in blocks (10-1).
I have no idea why TNT agreed to this game in prime time (favor to their boy Doug Collins?) but the Celtics go to Philadelphia tonight to take on the still terrible 76ers.