Monday, March 13, 2006

Now Leaving New York, Next Stop Indiana


(FortCollins-CO) In the city that most people consider being the Mecca of basketball and the biggest stage in the world, the Denver Nuggets put on a skills clinic for the New York Knicks. The Nuggets left no doubt on stage at Madison Square Garden that they were not only going to win the game, but were going to show the Knicks what team chemistry is all about. The Nuggets had five players in double figures, just missing seven with Greg Buckner and Reggie Evans scoring nine and seven respectively. The final in this win was 108-96, all Nuggets all the time.

The first quarter saw the start of Andre Miller, Marcus Camby, Rueben Patterson, Carmelo Anthony, and Kenyon Martin. It didn’t take long to see that Kenyon Martin was on another wavelength early and would take his familiar seat on the bench with an inflamed ego, whoops I mean, knee… Enter Reggie Evans and the chemistry for the Nuggets. Evans gives the Nuggets 30 solid minutes, seven points, eight rebounds, two steals, and an assist. He works like a dog with a smile on his face and I love it. His smile, attitude, and work ethic are contagious like bird flu and he makes the Nuggets play with lift and swagger.

The game was a little tighter than expected with the Knicks playing a respectable half and the Nuggets were only up by five at the intermission. Once the third quarter started though, watch out New York. The Nuggets must have got the pep talk of the year in the locker room because they showed out Madison Square to tremendous defense, electric scoring, and all around desire to rock the Knicks to sleep. Denver only allowed the Knicks 15 points in the quarter and Carmelo was hitting jumpers in everyone’s face like they disrespected his mother. Pulling up, rocking with his back to the basket, and driving to the cup to finish with the yak, Carmelo Anthony had the Garden oohing and awing like a magic show was going on. No one could guard him and he finished with a game high 35 points and five assists.

Marcus Camby was the defensive anchor. The Nugget big man finished the game with ten points, five blocks, and 18 rebounds. I bet the Knicks are really upset they let him go. Marcus is like a fine wine, maturing in his tenth year and putting up All-Star caliber numbers. Andre Miller was no slouch either. The point guard finished with 16 points and eight assists while having to guard Stephon Marbury or Steve Francis for much of the evening. The three other men that deserve kudos are the, “littlest big man in the game” Earl Boykins, Greg Buckner, and Eduardo Najera. Earl was an instant shot in the arm for the Nuggets by contributing 15 points and three assists and Najera looked good tossing in ten points and countless hustle points. Greg Buckner is filling the void nicely around the three-point line by hitting three of eight attempts.
There are two other points to put exclamation marks next to in the chart. First, the Nuggets have now broken a three game winless drought at Madison Square Garden. Second, and more importantly, is Carmelo has now scored 30 or more points in nine of the last 17 games. The young superstar is continuing to grow and is peaking at the most opportune time. If the Nuggets are to make waves in the Western Conference playoffs they are going to need him to rise to the top of his game and be that go-to guy in the clutch.
Next on this east coast road trip is the Indiana Pacers. This could be the toughest team on this voyage so the Nuggets need to get some rest, get some treatment for the bumps and the bruises, and make sure this eastern odyssey gets finished out in style. It all starts with Indiana boys, lets see you come together.

4 comments:

Nugg Doctor said...

Nuggets fans:

There will be a great picture up for this article as soon as the Blogger service is back running at normal capacity. For whatever reason, I can not upload at this point. Your patience is appreciated.

Enjoy,

The Nugg Doctor

nanananana said...

yes, let's see them come together alright! The Nuggs ARE coming together and it is a great site to see. They are a really good team, I can't wait to see the next game! GO NUGGETS!!! Thanks doc for the recap.

The Foges said...

Good win by the Nuggs, it's too bad they can't play the Knicks every night. Let's take it to Indy.

p.s. Is there anyway we can convince George Karl to keep K-Mart on the bench permanently?

Nugg Doctor said...

Foges,

If there was a way for me to get into George Karl's ear, trust me I would. I am all over the place putting my opinion about Kenyon Martin in writing. I just hope George is reading... It seems crystal clear to me that he is a negative vortex on this team. The whole dynamic seems to change when his out of the game. The Nuggets play cohesively when he is on the bench.

New York is struggling this year and no one can deny that. That is why it was good to see the Nuggets decisively beat them. A four or five point win would of been nothing more than a moral victory against a bad team. The fact is that the Nuggets dominated them like they should have, and that was releif to see.

Thanks for reading Foges,

The Nugg Doctor