What is it about the Jazz that brings out the worst in the Nuggets.
- Carmelo Anthony went back to his selfish/frustrated ways. Only having one assist and having four turnovers (including two offensive fouls)
- Chauncey Billups, who came into the game red hot (shooting nearly 50 percent from the field and over 40 percent from behind the arc) was a dismal 4-of-12 from the field and hit only 1 of 6 treys.
- Nene, who just came off of his eighth double-double of the season, had only five rebounds.
- The Nuggets bench, which had three players averaging more than 10 points a game. Didn’t have a single player on the second unit score in double figures.
- JR Smith, who has played under control for most of the season, shot two questionable shots and had a crucial flagrant foul down the stretch in the fourth and was ejected.
- Al Harrington hit only 1 of 7 shots.
- George Karl, who usually has a very good rotation and doesn’t overplay his starters had four play over 35 minutes. And used Ty Lawson, who had a nice spark in the second quarter for only 16 minutes.
What it adds all up to is frustrating loss at home versus a conference rival, which was struggling going into the game. Dropping eight of 10 games and didn’t break 100 points in the three previous games.
- Nene tied his career high with 28 points and also had three blocks
- Anthony scored 31 points
- Arron Afflalo had a double double with 13 points and a team high 10 rebounds
- Kenyon Martin had a solid all-around game, nine rebounds and four assists
- Ty Lawson scored eight points and had two steals in 16 minutes
- Anthony and Nene were 25-26 from the charity stripe
LOWLIGHTS (most are listed above)
- Al Jefferson had his way with Nene and Martin, scoring 28 points
- Bell had a season best 20 points and got under the skins of Smith and Anthony on defense
- Nuggets allowed the Jazz to score 30-plus points in each quarter
- Harrington, Smith and Andersen combined to go 3-14 off the bench
- Billups and Anthony shot 11-33 from the field
GRADING THE NUGGETS
- Nene- B-, tied a career-high with 28 points, but only grabbed five rebounds.
- Kenyon Martin-B-, good on the glass, but didn’t do much else
- Carmelo Anthony-C, despite scoring 31 points it was a pretty bad game from Anthony (shooting, defense, turnovers)
- Arron Afflalo-B, played good defense on Williams and was strong on the boards
- Chauncey Billups-C, off shooting night by Billups, but did make a timely shot down the stretch.
- Chris Andersen-C-, took a bad shot and didn’t do much in his 12 minutes on the court
- Al Harrington-C-, made a three in the first quarter but didn’t do much after that
- JR Smith-D, he let Bell take him out of the game and took some questionable shots
- Ty Lawson-B-, was a spark in the first half. Didn’t do much in the second
- George Karl-C, relied too much on his starters and was outcoached by Jerry Sloan
And on top of losing to the Jazz, the MeloDrama is starting to come back into the picture, with the always reliable Marc Spears reporting that Melo’s agent said, once again, that Melo won’t sign with any team except the Knicks. Insult to injury.