The Denver Nuggets had little trouble defeating the Cleveland Cavaliers, 127-99, on Saturday night. The Cavaliers had only eight players ready for tonight and were down to seven players after only five minutes. Point guard Mo Williams left the game due to injury, which allowed Ramon Sessions to score 21 points and distribute nine assists.
The Nuggets continued their recent offensive explosion, scoring 80 points at halftime. And it's a good game for the Nuggets when even Renaldo Balkman makes an appearance (three points, two assists in five minutes). Four of the Nuggets five starters scored in double digits: Carmelo Anthony (12), Arron Afflalo (21), Chauncey Billups (21) and Nene (22). Anthony also grabbed nine boards, and Billups doled out eight assists. Shelden Williams, though he only had two points, pulled down 11 rebounds.
Al Harrington and J.R. Smith combined for 29 points off the bench. Ty Lawson finished the night with five points and five assists before leaving with a sprained left ankle. His status is unknown right now.
The Nuggets (23-16) have averaged 129.67 points during this three-game win streak. They face the San Antonio Spurs tomorrow in a Sunday night game televised on ESPN.
As a native Ohioan, I'm not trying to rub it in Cleveland's face that their former favorite son departed, merely I'm trying to point out that at 8-31 the Cavs own the worst record in the NBA, a year removed from owning the best record in the NBA. And the only variable of note is that the King Of Akron took his talents South.
Now the Cavs are led by some names you might have heard of, but probably wouldn't want on your squad: Antawn Jamison, Anderson Varejao, Mo Williams, Daniel Gibson. Yes, when one of your stars is nicknamed ‘Boobie' you probably are going to have the worst record in the league.
The Nuggets, on the other hand, still have their superstar from the NBA rookie class of 2003, Carmelo Anthony. While Melo won't might not be in the Mile High City by the end of the season, the team should look at capitalizing on wins while he's here in order to set themselves up for a period of transition when, it seems, the entire roster will be shuffled. And what better way to up your record than playing the Cavs?
Tonight's game tips at 7:00 p.m.at the Pepsi Center and can be seen on Altitude for those not attending.