The Denver Nuggets suffered a bit of a set-back Sunday night with a 127-109 loss at the hands of the Los Angeles Lakers.
Nothing aggravates a Nuggets fan more than losing to a team that can easily be beaten, especially after dropping 146 points on New Orleans the other night. Back-and-fourth the Nuggets seem to sway between defensive woes and shooting woes, but personally I think the Denver Nuggets just have an inconsistent woe with outstanding play and total embarrassment. To make it even worse, Head Coach Mike Malone and starting center Nikola Jokic both received technical fouls and were ejected from the game in the second quarter. Paul Millsap also left the game with a wrist injury, and hopefully it isn’t too serious and he is able to come back ASAP.
I blame most of this demoralizing 109-127 loss on the dreadfully slow start on both offense and defense. Once the Lakers were up by twenty, there was no catching them. The interior defense was dismantled the whole game along with the perimeter defense as well. Since the Nuggets were behind they tried to take forced threes resulting with quick use of the shot clock and an easy rebound for the Lakers. Even though the Nuggets seemed to throw up a bunch of shots, they did end up making one more three than the Lakers and shot a better three point percentage. Gary Harris and Wilson Chandler led the team tonight with a combined 37 points and went 7/13 on threes. The rest of the roster doesn’t have much to talk about except for Mason Plumlee’s free throw percentage, which was 2/10 by the way.
Another factor that fueled tonight’s loss was the amount of turnovers. Denver had 21 total turnovers tonight coming mostly from the first half. Now I’m no coach, but in order to win games the ball has to stay in your team’s hands. With all these cons I can only think of one pro and that is at least there are still many games to come. The Nuggets have obviously not hit their stride yet but they have shown glimpses of pure talent and the ability to beat anyone. Tonight just wasn’t their night and that is okay, it happens. Below are some stats that hopefully improve next game against the Sacramento Kings Monday night.
43% FG% 53%
42% 3 FG% 38%
69% FT% 56%
21 TOs 15
47 REBs 46
4 Tech Fouls 1