The Denver Nuggets take on the also hot New Orleans Pelicans on Monday night in a game that has the opportunity to salve restless Denver fans.
When last we saw these Nuggets, they were dumping a fourth-quarter lead to the Los Angeles Lakers. Denver lost 121-114. In the grand scheme, it didn’t matter, Denver will lose at least 20 games this year (yes, I think they could win 60).
It’s always disheartening to lose to the Lakers, particularly these Lakers who are long on pomp and circumstance and short on delivery. The NBA remains abuzz over LeBron James‘ presence in Los Angeles but by now people are understanding that the 2-4 Lakers are not really a danger in the West.
The Pelicans, for their part were bum-rushed by Rudy Gobert and the Utah Jazz on a back-to-back and without the services of the still-injured Anthony Davis. If not for the self-professed greatest shooter in the NBA, Joe Ingles 0-for-4 performance from the three-point line, who knows what kind of numbers Utah could have put up.
That makes the Monday night matchup with the Nuggets a scary proposition for New Orleans, if anyone in the division can match or exceed Utah’s offensive prowess, it’s the Nuggets. Utah hung 132 on the Pelicans on an Ingles off night. Denver should have no trouble scoring the ball, they rarely do, and with Davis out, the Nuggets catch a break on both ends of the floor.
So what does Denver need to do to secure their fifth win of the season? Let’s start with: