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Kevin Durant is a Bad Mother Duck


February 16th, 2015 by aswitzer

I attended the February 9th Nuggets game against the Oklahoma City Thunder at the Pepsi Center with one of my long-time friends and his daughter.

At the end of the first half, Kevin Durant… “went off”. As in a frenzy of made 3’s, he went off. The Nuggets, who had dug a nice 20 point hole in the first quarter had cut into more than half that deficit with a fine 2nd quarter until the final 2:34.

Then, this happened:

2:34 Kevin Durant makes 26-foot three point jumper 60-49
2:19 60-49 Kenneth Faried misses two point shot
2:18 Russell Westbrook defensive rebound 60-49
2:10 Kevin Durant makes 25-foot three point jumper (Russell Westbrook assists) 63-49
1:59 Serge Ibaka shooting foul (Jusuf Nurkic draws the foul) 63-49
1:59 63-49 Jusuf Nurkic misses free throw 1 of 2
1:59 63-49 Nuggets offensive team rebound
1:59 63-50 Jusuf Nurkic makes free throw 2 of 2
1:46 Kevin Durant makes 26-foot three point jumper 66-50
1:32 66-50 Ty Lawson bad pass (Andre Roberson steals)
1:30 Russell Westbrook makes two point shot (Andre Roberson assists) 68-50
1:15 68-52 Wilson Chandler makes driving layup
1:01 68-52 Wilson Chandler personal foul
(Kevin Durant draws the foul)
1:01 Kevin Durant makes free throw 1 of 3 69-52
1:01 Kevin Durant misses free throw 2 of 3 69-52
1:01 Thunder offensive team rebound 69-52
1:01 69-52 Darrell Arthur enters the game for Jusuf Nurkic
1:01 Kevin Durant makes free throw 3 of 3 70-52
0:41 70-55 Ty Lawson makes 25-foot three point jumper
0:35 Kevin Durant makes 28-foot three point jumper (Russell Westbrook assists) 73-55

 

14 points in less than 2 minutes.

Then, Kevin felt the need to say something about his scoring explosion:

For those younger members out there, let’s just go with “I’m a bad Mother Duck” and leave it at that.

Needless to say, the Nuggets could never fully regroup and ended up losing 114-124.

Nuggets trade Andre Miller, Jordan Hamilton at deadline in separate deals


February 21st, 2014 by aswitzer

The Houston Rockets had a stockpile of point guards and the Nuggets have plenty of swingman type players. Moving Jordan Hamilton to get the backup point guard the Nuggets desperately needed to finish this season was a good move for both teams. Jordan had been given ample opportunity to succeed in Denver as an off-the-bench long range bomber but never really panned out. Aaron Brooks comes willingly to Denver (he had to okay the trade) as he had become buried on the bench behind Patrick Beverly and Jeremy Lin in Houston. Brooks is a proven NBA player that can push the pace and score when needed from outside.

The Nuggets finally resolved their “Andre Miller” issue at the deadline this week by trading him to the Wizards for Jan Vesely. Vesely is a 6’11 forward from the Czech Republic, who the Wizards selected 6th in the 2011 NBA draft. Vesely has been flirting with the bust label and could use a fresh start with a new team.

Andre Miller had been banished  since an in-game blowup with rookie coach Brian Shaw on January 1st, 2014. Even with injuries to Nate Robinson (ACL) and Ty Lawson (broken rib) the team made due with shooting guard Randy Foye and 2nd year player Evan Fournier running the point. Andre has had some great days in a Denver Nugget after two lengthy runs with the team, but at 37 he had been in that awkward stage of thinking he was better than he really was on the court since the George Karl era had ended last season.

Randy Foye hits amazing game winner against Clippers


February 4th, 2014 by aswitzer

Randy Foye was the hero on a broken play that resulted in him launching a 25 footer at the top of the key while fading to his left and leaping to avoid getting blocked by the Clipper’s Blake Griffin. It swished thru the net as the horn was sounding. Although not as dramatic, Kenneth Faried had a career night with 28 points, 11 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 steal, and 2 blocks.

 Relive the moment:

 

 

Photo by Garrett Ellwood, Denver Nuggets

Photo by Garrett Ellwood, Denver Nuggets

NBA Photo-Art from RareInk.com, including Manimal Dunk for All-Star Weekend


February 15th, 2013 by aswitzer

Denver Nuggets and NBA Fans – RareInk.com‘s mission is to create extraordinary and accessible art for sports fans.  Today, in conjunction with the 2013 NBA All-Star Game, RareInk launched a gallery with 200 new pieces of cutting-edge, photo based artwork featuring past and present NBA players.

NuggetsHoops has had the good fortune to sample their impressive wares first-hand, as I have this Nuggets Logo artwork hanging in my basement office:

 

Denver Nuggets

Denver Nuggets logo on stretched canvas

 

Go check out their collection today and pick up something for yourself or the NBA Fan in your life. Details from a RareInk press release earlier today:

Each piece is produced using museum quality archival materials and is offered
as either fine art paper prints ($69 and $109) or stretched canvases ($109 and $199). Every piece is a hand-
numbered, limited-edition, with release numbers ranging from 100 to 250.

Off the Backboard, one-handed, with a finger mustache


January 24th, 2013 by aswitzer

Boom!

Yeah, another crazy JaVale McGee moment just happened…

Free 1 Night Fantasy Game Event This Friday – $300 Prize!


October 31st, 2012 by aswitzer

NuggetsHoops is giving all readers a chance to win $300 this Friday night – for free!

All you have to do is register as a Draftstreet.com user via this private referral link by 6:00PM ET this Friday – 11/2/2012.

Registration and entry in the event is free.  Basically, you register then draft a team from all NBA players for this Friday night’s games only. The total fantasy points you earn from your drafted players gives you a score – the highest score wins. You have $100,000 to draft with and players are valued based on their current market value. Players like Lebron James and Kevin Durant will cost the most so if you can pick some lower valued players that have a great game on Friday, you will do well.

It’s a quick and easy way to check out NBA Fantasy Gaming – and still have a chance to win a little cash – an opportunity not to be missed!

If you have any questions about this event, please post them in the comments!

Raising Expectations for Nuggets in 2013


October 29th, 2012 by aswitzer

With a final mighty surge, the Lakers swatted aside the pesky Denver Nuggets, ending their 2012 season in a hard fought game 7 in Los Angeles.

Over the summer, the Lakers went out and got 38 year old Steve Nash from the Phoenix Suns in a sign and trade. Then the Lakers traded for Dwight Howard in a big multi-team deal that also featured your Denver Nuggets. Trading away Aaron Afflalo and Al Harrington to the Orlando Magic gave up a bit on offense but should upgrade their perimeter defense by getting Andrea Igoudala in the deal. The Nuggets also drafted for a promising young Frenchman in Evan Fournier and a 2nd round surprise in Quincy Miller. Then the Nuggets showed faith in Javale McGee and gave the Nuggets center a a 4 year deal with roughy $44 million. Lastly, they picked up Anthony Randolph – a promising young player that the Nuggets hope will finally come over age while on their roster.

With these moves, and the rest of that nucleus from the 2012 Playoffs intact, the Nuggets look to improve upon their results of last year. That will take a higher finish in the Western Conference Finals standings – hopefully 3rd or 4th at a minimum. That might have just gotten a little easier with Harden (the Thunder’s prized 6 man) getting traded to the Rockets this week. Unfortunately the Nuggets have their own distraction in the little matter of Lawson’s contract. Lawson will be a free agent this coming summer if a new deal isn’t reached and signed for on this Wednesday.

Book Review: “Basketball Junkie” by Chris Herren and Bill Reynolds


May 6th, 2011 by aswitzer

Chris Herren was a 2nd round pick by the Denver Nuggets in the 1999 NBA Draft. He played in 45 games as a rookie, battling thru knee and wrist injuries. After only one season with the Nuggets he was traded to Boston. I remember being pretty excited about the Nuggets pick in 1999, as Herren put together an impressive 3 year career at Fresno State after transferring from Boston College after his Freshman year. After only one season with Boston, Herren’s NBA career was over – a once promising career brought short thanks to bad personal choices and drugs.

This book is a memoir of those days, and how Chris has since turned his life around – marrying his high school sweetheart, being a father of three, and working with kids today to help them find balance between sports and life.

His book – Basketball Junkie comes out next week – May 10th.

Read more about it on his website: Basketball Junkie

Or, pre-order the book on Amazon if you are already interested.

I’ll be reviewing the book over the next few weeks and will add a review to this post. Please check back!

2011 NBA Nation rolls into Denver May 7th and 8th


May 5th, 2011 by aswitzer

NBA Nation LogoThe NBA’s largest mobile basketball playground – NBA Nation comes to Denver this coming weekend alongside the 24th Annual Cinco De Mayo festival this Saturday May 7th and Sunday May 8th at the Civic Center Park in downtown Denver.

Here’s the current schedule of events for each day:

Saturday, May 7:
All Day DJ Bedz
12pm – NBA Legend & Denver Nuggets Ambassador Mark Randall
12pm – Denver Nuggets Dancers
12pm – Super Size Mascot Rocky
12:30pm – NBA Legend Rick Barry
4pm – NBA Legend & NBA Nation Ambassador Darryl Dawkins
4pm – Sprite Slam Dunk Showdown

Sunday, May 8:
All Day DJ Bedz
12pm – NBA Legend & Denver Nuggets Ambassador Mark Randall
12pm – Denver Nuggets Dancers
12pm – Super Size Mascot Rocky
2pm – NBA Legend & NBA Nation Ambassador Darryl Dawkins
3pm – NBA FIT Clinic

Please note that all appearances are subject to change.

Read more about the NBA Nation 18-wheel truck and all its activities. You can also read about last year’s event and see photos.

I’m going to try and go Sunday afternoon with my son, if Mother’s Day activities permit. It looks like its going to be a lot of fun for basketball fans of all ages!

Keys to beating Thunder in Round 1


April 18th, 2011 by aswitzer

The Denver Nuggets enter the 2011 NBA Playoffs with a very different squad then last season. Even bigger than all the player changes, is the return of their head coach. Not only has Coach Karl triumphantly returned from a tough battle with throat and neck cancer at the end of last season, since the big Melo/Billups trade. Karl was the key factor last year in the Nuggets fading down the stretch and losing in the first round to an inferior Utah squad. With him back, the Nuggets have their confidence and swagger back… even without their All-Star small forward and clutch shooting point guard around. Karl also seems to have a new sparkle in his eyes since the trade – he is really enjoying coaching a hard-working, talented team without having to deal with the ego of a superstar.

What the Nuggets need to do to win this series:

Play as a team
None of the Nuggets individually can win this series. This new Nuggets squad that went 18-7 to close out the season after the trade won by playing together, both defensively and offensively. Offensively, the Nuggets must distribute the ball. With no superstars, and few one-on-one players other than JR Smith, the Nuggets point guards Ty Lawson and Raymond Felton need to penetrate in the lane and kick to open teammates to create high percentage shots. On defense, they must continue to play great team defense all on the interior and out at the three point line – something they’ve suddenly been doing very well at the end of the season.

Get healthy
The Nuggets have a ton of nagging injuries but the key one is probably Aaron Afflalo. Afflalo had become one of the go to guys in the 4th quarter on offense before going down with a hamstring injury that has refused to heal completely. Even more key though is Afflalo’s one-on-one defense – if he can’t play effectively in this series, the Nuggets have a much tougher time finding the right guys to cover Durant and Westbrook.

Don’t get caught up in playoff mental games
I’m mainly looking at Nene with this one. During the final two games between these two teams in the regular season, Nene and Kendrick Perkins went literally forehead-to-forehead several times after getting tangled up under the basket. Both are big immovable forces that man the middle for their respective teams. If either get tossed due to a scuffle, it could easily tip the scale – especially for the Thunder if its Nene that can’t keep his cool. Nene shoulders a fair amount of offensive load along with defensive responsibilities, whereas Kendrick is primarily looked at for his defense and toughness. Nene also has a tendency to lose his game once he’s lost his head, so I hope he can keep Perkins from getting under his skin.

Contain one of the Thunder superstars – Durant and Westbrook
The Nuggets are most likely doomed if both of these guys have offensive gems each game. Why? Because the Nuggets may not have the firepower to keep up, especially in crunch time when every possession becomes critical. If both Durant and Westbrook are playing well, it may be impossible to cover both and force one of the other 3 Thunder players on the court to beat us – they are simply that good.