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View Full Version : Utah Jazz @ Denver Nuggets - Round 1 Game 1


u2sarajevo
04-17-2010, 08:18 AM
Jazz-Nuggets Preview (http://scores.espn.go.com/nba/preview?gameId=300417007)
Time: 9:30PM CST
TV: ESPN
Line: Denver +5

Unless there is interest I probably won't start one for the other matchups today because they are mostly too boring. :)

DENVER (AP) -- AK-47 is out, K-Mart is in.

Forward Andrei Kirilenko will miss Utah's first-round playoff series against Denver after aggravating his strained left calf during a workout Thursday, making it harder for the Jazz to guard Nuggets All-Star Carmelo Anthony.

Kirilenko, who has missed 15 of his team's last 17 games, was injured during a light workout in Salt Lake City. An MRI revealed a muscle strain in a different area from his previous two strains, so team doctors recommended two weeks of rest while they look into other treatment options.

"I can't react. What am I going to do? Go jump and hit my head against the wall? I'm not going to do that," Jazz coach Jerry Sloan said. "He got hurt. I felt bad for him, and he wasn't very happy about it. He was devastated. That's part of this business. You just try to encourage him to try to keep his spirits up."

The Nuggets will surely search for ways to exploit his absence, but having Anthony fire up more shots isn't the response acting coach Adrian Dantley wants.

"I think 'Melo shoots enough shots already," said Dantley, who went 11-8 in place of George Karl, who is recovering from treatment for throat cancer.

Told of Kirilenko's absence in the first round, Nuggets forward Kenyon Martin just smiled.

Martin will man the middle for Denver, but how effective he'll be remains a mystery after he missed 18 games with a balky left knee before returning to play limited minutes in the Nuggets' final three regular season games.

With Kirilenko out, Sloan said he plans to have Carlos Boozer back in the lineup for Game 1 Saturday night at the Pepsi Center.

A strained muscle in his right side kept him out of the season finale Wednesday night, when the Jazz lost to the Phoenix Suns at home, relegating them to the road for the first two games of the playoffs as the fifth seed in the West.

Had they won that game, they would have had the third seed and the home-court advantage. Instead, they had to cross the Rocky Mountains to open in Denver, which won its second straight Northwest Division title.

"It would have been great to be home," Jazz point guard Deron Williams said. "We can keep dwelling on it, keep talking about it. But we're not home. So, there's no reason to talk about it. We're on the road."

And there's also no use fretting over Utah's injury-riddled lineup, including Mehmet Okur's left Achilles' tendinitis.

"We want to have our team at full strength, but what can you do about injuries?" Williams said. "You can't make a guy play if they're hurt. They need to sit out and take care of themselves."

That's what Martin did in Denver.

The Nuggets were cruising along in second place in the West with designs on catching the defending champion Los Angeles Lakers back in February when Karl was diagnosed with throat cancer and Martin, in the midst of his best season in years, was slowed by patellar tendinitis in his left knee.

Instead of season-ending surgery, he opted for "blood spinning" -- platelet-rich plasma injection therapy -- in hopes of being back in time for the playoffs.

Although he got some games under his belt before the playoffs, nobody knows what Martin will be like now.

"I'm all right, I'm going to play, so that's all that matters," Martin said Friday.

Martin hasn't been running up and down the court in practice, in part to preserve his health but also because he gets winded easily.

"Terrible. But it ain't as bad as I thought it would be," Martin said of his conditioning. "Got a couple of games in, especially at home. I think that was the most important thing, for me to get the altitude in my lungs a little bit. It don't matter out here, man. You could be gone for a day and come back and it's still going to bother you a little bit. Just got to push through it."

Dantley said he has no idea what he'll get out of Martin after the forward told him at halftime of a season-ending loss at Phoenix that "his knee was bothering him and he wasn't going to play the second half." Martin said later he was just playing it safe.

"Well, the only person that knows how Kenyon is doing is Kenyon," Anthony said. "I can sit here all day and tell you what I think about him. A.D. can tell you what he thinks about him. You know, we don't know how Kenyon feels on the inside. If he says he's ready to go, he's ready to go."

Even as a shell of himself, Martin could impact the Nuggets' fortunes, Chauncey Billups suggested.

"Everybody knows the presence that he has. When he's not out there, we miss it, just his defensive capabilities and rebounding, just him knowing the game of basketball. So, I'm glad that he's back."

Underdog
04-17-2010, 08:36 AM
I just hope these two teams beat the hell out of each other for 6-7 games...

sike
04-17-2010, 11:20 AM
I HATE both of these teams.

Blackspider972
04-17-2010, 12:26 PM
I just hope these two teams beat the hell out of each other for 6-7 games...

But if that happens, won't they be too fatigued when they have to face the Lakers in the 2nd round?

chumdawg
04-17-2010, 10:49 PM
On ticky-tack fouls...Melo on Miles just now sure looked ticky-tack, by all observations...but then again, why the hell does Melo do that?? It's on him.

LonghornDub
04-17-2010, 10:56 PM
Man, the Jazz just can't catch a break with injuries to key players as of late. AK's out, Boozer's probably not 100%, and now Okur is out for the rest of this game and maybe more.

chumdawg
04-17-2010, 11:12 PM
Man, the Jazz just can't catch a break with injuries to key players as of late. AK's out, Boozer's probably not 100%, and now Okur is out for the rest of this game and maybe more.Sad thing is, we can't take any joy in that. We need who wins this series to be tough with LA/OKC.

On that note, I'll say that I may have been too quick to dismiss the chances and the prowess of the proud team from Denver. And I'm not saying that after seeing the first half (which was mostly meh)...I was thinking it before. Still a lot of talent on that team.

chumdawg
04-17-2010, 11:40 PM
I don't know why no one is commenting. This is a fantastic game.

LonghornDub
04-17-2010, 11:41 PM
I'm studying as I watch, otherwise I'd be posting more. Great game.

Did you (or anybody else) catch that weird commercial just now with Melo? It was like "Brought to you by the fans of Carmelo Anthony in Utah." What was that all about....

chumdawg
04-17-2010, 11:51 PM
I'm studying as I watch, otherwise I'd be posting more. Great game.

Did you (or anybody else) catch that weird commercial just now with Melo? It was like "Brought to you by the fans of Carmelo Anthony in Utah." What was that all about....I didn't see that...switched to SNL at the half...but it seems like an intriguing stategy. Go for the segment in Utah that likes the black tatooed guy.

I do understand that there is a sizeable gay contingent in SLC, so perhaps there's that. But before now, I haven't been under the impression that Carmelo is a big item with the gays. Wouldn't doubt it, though.

LonghornDub
04-18-2010, 12:00 AM
I didn't see that...switched to SNL at the half...but it seems like an intriguing stategy. Go for the segment in Utah that likes the black tatooed guy.

I do understand that there is a sizeable gay contingent in SLC, so perhaps there's that. But before now, I haven't been under the impression that Carmelo is a big item with the gays. Wouldn't doubt it, though.

Yeah, it was very strange. Hopefully they'll show it again.

chumdawg
04-18-2010, 12:06 AM
Boy, Denver is opening up a CAN!

I don't mind saying that I underestimated them.

LonghornDub
04-18-2010, 12:09 AM
These guys are just so deadly at home in the fourth quarter. This is exactly what they did to us in all three games in Denver last year, if I remember correctly.

chumdawg
04-18-2010, 12:50 AM
Damn them Denver Broncos.

dude1394
04-18-2010, 12:16 PM
I think you just have to make sure that you don't throw the ball around against denver. You are better to dribble drive against them but if you cannot..you have to make sure you don't aimlessly toss the ball around the horn. They are really,really dangerous imo when they get a running game going, it will snowball on you quick.

Now after typing that, it's the same with a lot of running teams, it gets their rhythm/flow going and they start hitting everything as well as being even more energized defensively.

You've got to make sure you don't toss it around against them I think. Now having typing that and having not watched the game I'm going to have to go check the turnovers. ;0

EDIT: My hypothesis looks pretty shaky in this one. it looks like JRSmith went bonkers to get it started and Anthony finished it. Weird...it appears the jazz actually shot 60% in the fourth??? Looks like JRSmith should get the game ball in that one 18 in the fourth? eek...

JCmasta
04-18-2010, 12:43 PM
People are going to overreact after this game but Utah was leading or down by 2 after the 3rd and the nuggets got hot from 3 and poured it on towards the end. They can't consistently stay this hot and i wouldn't be surprised if Utah steals game 2.

aurelino9
04-18-2010, 04:46 PM
Okur is out for the rest of the playoffs. Seems like the Mavs have the toughest matchup in the first round. Both Phoenix and Denver are playing undermanned teams.

dude1394
04-18-2010, 05:14 PM
Okur is out for the rest of the playoffs. Seems like the Mavs have the toughest matchup in the first round. Both Phoenix and Denver are playing undermanned teams.

Man...opportunities in the NBA can be so fleeting. It's not like nfl or baseball where you've got a tremendous bunch of players who can make up. You lose a starting 5 of import and you are pretty much done unless you are already in the finals.

Mavericks Rockets Fan
04-20-2010, 02:14 PM
Okur is out for the rest of the playoffs. Seems like the Mavs have the toughest matchup in the first round. Both Phoenix and Denver are playing undermanned teams.

What is funny is that both Phoenix and Denver lost to their undermanned opponents at home...