Woody Paige: Denver Nuggets Need to Hire Chauncey Billups to Get Back to Playoffs

By Woody, Paige | The Gazette (Colorado Springs, CO), March 20, 2018 | Go to article overview

Woody Paige: Denver Nuggets Need to Hire Chauncey Billups to Get Back to Playoffs


Woody, Paige, The Gazette (Colorado Springs, CO)


The distraught Nuggets are in need of a big shot to reach the postseason.

And Mr. Big Shot.

After another devastating defeat in double overtime on the season's longest trip, the Nuggets, now 38-33, must win at least eight of their 11 remaining games to avoid missing the playoffs for the fifth consecutive year.

Nuggetforgetaboutit.

The road continues to be long and winding, as the Beatles asserted - and too hard for the Nuggets. They've lost 23 of 34 away from The Can. They still have five more on this perilous Hannibal-like journey, then two more in cities with teams contending for the last Western playoff position.

Let the madness begin! Denver Nuggets embark on NCAA Tournament of their own

Meanwhile, the Nuggets' president, supposedly a basketball enthusiast and expert, is spending three months on sabbatical in London.

If Kroenke The Younger doesn't care during this critical crunch time, and Kroenke The Elder is in parts unknown, then why should the rest of us?

The Nuggets played with no effort - coach Mike Malone's description - in a loss to the Memphis Teddy Bears in the expedition's first game. And on Monday night in a pointfest, the Nuggets scored 141 points, but fell to the Heat by eight.

The Timberwolves lead the Nuggets for the eighth playoff spot by two games, a modest margin, except when the Nuggets' recent record and upcoming schedule are considered. The Nuggets are playing at .500 pace and confront the Tanking Bulls next. Victory should be easy, but ... the cross-country, over-the-border tour also has stops in Washington, Philadelphia, Toronto and Oklahoma City. The Nugs will be fortunate to win any.

And the Raptors, the East's No. 1 seed in the East, probably will go all-Jurassic Park on the Nuggets. Masai Ujiri isn't over his bitterness.

Ujiri and Josh Kroenke were the principal executives of the Nuggets when they traded Carmelo Anthony and last made the playoffs. Ujiri received a five-year, $15 million offer from Toronto, and the Nuggets didn't even counter. The Raptors' president has made the Nuggets' president look silly. The Raptors are playoff perennials, while the Nuggets sunk into an annual abyss after George Karl's firing.

The Nuggets probably will stagger home with a 39-34 mark and be eliminated figuratively. …

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