Toronto and Denver were ousted last night from the NBA playoffs; both were up against superior opposition, but only one played like they wanted to be there: the Raptors. The Nuggets are the poster child for underachiving, thuggish, selfish and boneheaded play. They played little if any defense the entire series, allowing easy layups and uncontested jumpers. Sound familiar, Wolves fans? It's a wonder why they even bothered to contest for the eighth seed, especially when the best moment of their "run" was when their mascot drew up a chair and read the paper in the middle of the Lakers' introduction line in Game 3. The only bit of fire we had last night was Thug No. 1 Kenyon Martin shouting "It Ain't Over" during a run to get within six in the second quarter. Otherwise we had Carmelo Anthony telling anyone who bothered to listen that they quit, and George Karl being defensive about the Nugs lack of...well, just about everything, especially intensity. In a situation where chemistry, and unity of spirit are vital to success, Denver is the Band of Others.
As I mentioned in an earlier post, it's fortunate we did not pick up Allen Iverson in a trade just to keep KG here. He and Anthony showed little on-court leadership; it's ironic that within little more than a year the Sixers can be drawing more of a buzz with Iverson gone, than the Nuggets with AI present. Still even more irony: even though the Sixers made the playoffs (albeit in the weak East), after shedding their icon superstar, focusing on youth and obtaining draft picks, they still fired their GM Billy King earlier in the season for unsatisfactory progress. After shedding our icon, focusing on youth and obtaining draft picks, our VP is the new Charlton Heston; management of the Wolves will seemingly have to be pried from his cold, dead hands.