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Nets play host to the Nuggets

Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

That went well. After losing three straight games, the Brooklyn Nets returned home on Sunday to play the disappointing Detroit Pistons. Brooklyn was able to stop the losing with a 110-105 victory. At 11-15, the Nets find themselves in the eighth position in the Eastern Conference standings.

Making the trip to Brooklyn this evening will be the Denver Nuggets. The Nuggets have had a pretty poor season all things considered, and are coming off of a 28 point loss on the road to Charlotte on Monday. The Nuggets are currently tied for the eleventh position in the Western Conference with Sacramento, but it's highly unlikely the Nuggets get into the playoffs.

Where to follow the game

For the television watchers, YES Network has got you covered. On the radio side, with the New Jersey Devils and Carolina Panthers occupying WFAN's time (side note: check out sister sites In Lou We Trust and Canes Country for coverage on that game), WCBS 880 AM will give you what you need. Tip off is scheduled for a bit after 7:30 PM.


It's unlikely Brook Lopez makes his return from his back injury while Deron Williams is questionable with a calf injury.

For Denver, Danilo Gallinari will be out for the next month with a right knee meniscus tear. Ty Lawson has been dealing with tightness in his lower back, but he did play in  Charlotte. Darrell Arthur has missed the last two games with a leg injury and is doubtful.

The game

What's up? Let's find out:

2014-2015 Season

Brooklyn Denver


11-15 12-16


94.29 98.67

Offensive Efficiency

100.2 101.3

Defensive Efficiency

103.1 104.7

Turnover Rate

15.5 14.8

Assist Rate

16.6 15.7

Offensive Rebounding Rate

23.1 27.4

Rebounding Rate

48.7 50.6

Free Throw Rate

27.1 29

Effective Field Goal Percentage

49.1 47.7

Opponent's Effective Field Goal Percentage

49.3 49.3

The Cleveland Cavaliers came calling about Lopez, but it's incredibly unlikely they are able to acquire him. The big news in the rumor department is Deron Williams possibly going to the Sacramento Kings. More on that trade and all of its parts here.

Lawson is one of the quickest point guards in the league. He's able to put a lot of pressure on opposing teams by driving to the basket 13 times a game, highest in the league. Unfortunately for Nuggets fans, Lawson has continued a troubling trend. His field goal percentage has decreased every season he's been in the league and he is at a career worst 40.5 percent from the floor. Lawson has made up for his poor shooting by being one of the league's best passers. He's third in the league in assists, averaging ten a night. Although he's shooting 29.9 percent from three point range, he does have the potential to get incredibly from deep. He once made nine three pointers in a game. Assuming Williams is out again, Jarrett Jack will start at the point. Jack had his best game in ages on Sunday, scoring 15 points and handing out ten of Brooklyn's season 29 assists. When Lawson goes out, Net nemesis Nate Robinson will look to pick up the slack. The Nuggets are almost nine points per 100 possessions worse when Nate is on the court.

The Aaron Afflalo and Joe Johnson matchup should be intriguing. AAA has been one of the league's better perimeter defenders throughout his career, but this season the Nuggets have been better when he is off the court. Johnson should look to post up Afflalo. On shots ten feet and closer, opponents are shooting above 60 percent from the field against Afflalo, well above the league average. Johnson has been the person to rely on for the Nets offensively, and even if Williams and Lopez appear, things should continue running through Johnson.

Player to watch: Kenneth Faried

After a good summer with the United States Men's National Team, Faried returned home to sign a four year, $50 million contract extension. So far at least, the success in international competition hasn't carried over to the NBA game. Like Lawson, Faried has seen his shooting take a tumble. And when we take a look at where Faried is taking his shots, we see that he's a little bit further from the rim than he is comfortable with. Over at Denver Stiffs, Nate Timmons writes:

The Nuggets may not need Faried to be a monster on the offensive end; frankly, they have better options. But make no mistake, Faried is an integral part of what the Nuggets want to do and he can be a key cog for how far this team goes. His elite energy and relentlessness for rebounds are what make Kenneth special.

While many may beg for defensive improvement and increased range on the offensive end, don't forget what got Faried here. Yes, it'd be nice to see improvements to Faried's all around game, and those should come with time, but you don't want to lose the Manimal side either.

On the other side will be his summertime teammate Mason Plumlee. Plumlee has been on a terrific run lately, picking up three double doubles in the seven games he has started since Lopez has been out. Like Faried, Plumlee is energetic and takes most of his shots near the rim. The swirling trade rumors didn't have an effect against the Pistons, and it probably won't here. As the season progresses and trade talks begin to intensify, it's going to be worth keeping a close eye on how Mason plays.

From the Vault

Throughout the month, we've been discussing athletes that have taken stands on social issues. One of those athletes was former Nugget Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf. Head back to 1995 and watch him give Jason Kidd the business.

More reading: Denver Stiffs