FanPost

Are we ready to put Denver to bed yet?



This is starting to become a nuisance.  I don't know if you have noticed it the way I have.  So last month we kinda made a trade with the Denver Nuggets.  We gave up a lot of our players and got a lot of theirs, most notably, one Carmelo Anthony and one Chauncey Billups.  Much of Posting & Toasting was split over the way the trade went down.  The disagreement was less about whether or not to get Carmelo Anthony, but more of how much we should be willing to give up in order to get him.

Since said trade the Knicks have had some excellent wins as well as some mind-numbing lows.  Including last night's game against Memphis, the Knicks are 7-6 since acquiring Lala's Husband.  However, the Denver Nuggets
 have surprised many a critic by going 9-2 since the trade. 

Let's talk about how people have been using this as judgement on the trade.

Let me premise this by saying it is perfectly fair to question the trade the Knicks made.  I was one of the loudest opponents of giving up so much to get Melo.  I questioned Billups for Felton a lot too.  A lot of us were very fond of the players we sent to Denver but we understood what we were bringing into New York.  We understood the Knicks need for acquiring top talent to help us in our pursuit of a championship.  Players like Carmelo are rare and opportunities to acquire such talents don't always come around.  This post is NOT about that.

This is about the skewing of information to make your own point.  I have noticed an increasing amount of posts making note of Denver's post-trade record as a way to say "I told you so" regarding the Melo trade to be a bad move for the Knicks.  If you believe that, fine.  I have no problem with your opinion.  But using the Nuggets record to justify your feelings is bullshit.  That's right.  Bullshit.  If you prefer an English accent, that would be "booshit".  In pig-latin; "ullshitbay".  Ebonics- "mahfucken' BULLshit mahfucka".  In spanish - chorradas.  But I digress.

Here's the thing.  BEFORE the Lala's Husband trade, the Nuggets sat 32-25 and have dealt with significant injuries to hteir frontline players.  Kenyon Martin missed 33 games and Chris Anderson has missed 32 games.  Both guys are healthy again which makes the Nuggets even stronger than they were before.  Obviously the arrival of Gallinari, Felton, Chandler and Mozgov have helped deep an already good team.  However, Gallinari has played only 3 of the 11 games, Felton has been relegated to a bench role behind Ty Lawson (though still playing around 30mins a game), and Mozgov has played a TOTAL of 17 minutes over the last 5 games.  Wilson Chandler has played heavy minutes in the absence of Gallo. 

Now granted, Chandler and Felton have helped Denver overcome the loss of Billups and Anthony along with Gallo (pre-injury).  However, one should not forget that the Nuggets have been playing under a major cloud of uncertainty all season due to the publicity of Melo's desire to be traded.  They have dealt with a ridiculous array of daily scrutiny, rumors and speculations about the situation.  Now that that mess has been dealt with, the Nuggets have been able to just play basketball in peace.  Ty Lawson is nearly averaging a double-double (16.4ppg, 9.3ast, 2.3stl, .506fg%, .400 3pt%) since the trade and Kenyon Martin is playing his best and most efficient basketball of the season.  Nene has also put up his best stats all year since the departure of Melo too.  Hovering around 15ppg, 7reb and .650fg%, he is now increased those numbers to 17ppg and 9.7reb on .638fg% in March.

Basically the Nuggets, who were already a very good team, have continued to play at a high level.  The Ex-Knicks have helped, but they certainly have not been the catalysts for the wins on their own.  I believe the bigger factor was the weight lifted from the team's shoulders once the long-expected deal for Melo was finally completed.  That doesn't mean Melo is now OUR distraction though.  Don't get it twisted.  But the Nuggets were clearly affected by the constant talk of the trade and I am sure George Karl was affected by it as well.  Now with a clean slate, it should be no surprise the Nuggets are playing great because they already had enough talent to win games.  The Knicks definitely solidify them, but credit the Nuggets for their success.

Both NY and Denver have different ideas of how to build a champion.  They aren't teams to be compared against one another.  Please stop using the post-trade records as a judgement against this trade.  It is the equivalent of seeing the headline "Ford & Chevy Involved in Merger", rushing to buy stock in the new company only to find out that the article was actually about a car accident.  A little research goes a long way, guys. 

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