I attended tonight's game in Denver, despite adverse conditions getting to and from the game, some good snow coming down in Colorado. Went to the game with a buddy, Adam (Nuggets fan) as well as a few coworkers.
Adam and I make predictions going in: I predict Nuggets win 120-101, he predicts Nuggets win 108-86. We also predict point totals for Quincy Douby. Adam has no idea who Quincy Douby is, but loves the name. Adam predicts 18, I predict 3.
I arrive at the game in red, white and blue throwback Kings gear, and find out tonight is 80s night. Hopefully the Kings don't play like the Kings of the 80s. Also, despite it being 80s night, neither team wears throwback jerseys.
Anthony Carter immediately strikes me as the worst player in the floor. The guy bobbles enough passes that Mikki Moore is looking pretty good right now.
Early, the Nuggets have established a strategy that the Kings seem ill-equipped to stop. They call it "hustle".
Salmons has 17 of the Kings first 26 points. At one point, he is the only King on the floor who has scored points.
Q1 ends tied at 34. I am pleased thus far, despite the inability to stop "hustle".
Adam asks me why Artest wears the number 93. I have no idea, so I respond "Cause he's awesome". Later in the game, we decide he wears 93 because he will attempt a minimum of 9 3-pointers in every game, regardless of success rate.
Again, I think Anthony Carter is absolutely terrible. Then K-9(woof!) comes in and reminds me that there are worse players in the league than Carter.
Tone Loc is the halftime show. I've never seen an audience change opinions on an artist this quickly. The mood went from "Cool, Tone Loc!" to "What the hell happened to Tone Loc?" in about 3.7 seconds. We coin the phrase, "The NBA: Where Tone Loc happens"
Q3 I ate some nachos, so my notes are quite incomplete. I did manage to jot down that Artest airballed a 3-pointer, but then stole the ball immediately on the other end of the floor. I announce "Tonight, we spell redemption R-O-N"
I have no idea where Beno Udrih is from, but I like him.
Brad Miller has not been good tonight. Lot of stupid fouls. After the 5th foul I jot down:
"Brad Miller = not good". K-9(woof!) comes in to replace him, screws a few things up and inspires me to write, directly below my thoughts on Miller, "K-9(woof!)=ditto"
Artest has two traveling calls in a very short period of time. They seem to stem from indecisiveness.
Francisco Garcia has obviously angered these refs in a past life. All night, lots of questionable calls. No-calls when Garcia thinks he's being fouled. Ticky-tack calls when Garcia's playing defense. And then the missed 3 with 1.7 seconds left. Iverson isn't even going for the ball. The Pepsi center is excited, they know they got away with a big one. Too bad, because even though it was sloppy, this was a fun game.
There are no moral victories this season, but the team made a game out of it. I feel confident this would have been a win if Kevin Martin had been playing.