Defense the focus for these Nuggets

Here’s the Denver Post blog with insight on this season’s Nuggets squad:

Make no mistake about it, the Nuggets will be a defense-first basketball team. And to that end, much of what was drilled during the week was on that end of the court. Against the Clippers — and then Mavericks on Tuesday — [Nuggets coach Michael] Malone wants to see progress on that end of the court first. Success there will allow the team to get on the break on offense.

“The hope is if you have a solid defensive effort that we’re able to run off of our defense,” he said. “I think we have some guys on our team that are really suited to play up tempo, open court. I think Emmanuel Mudiay, the more we can put him in open court situations, the more he’s going to thrive. Offensively we know there are going to be some growing pains, but as long as we’re not throwing the ball all over the gym and we’re trying to execute, we’ll be okay, regardless of the outcome.”

Nuggets forward Danilo Gallinari reported feeling “fresh” after the first couple of days of practices. He and forward Joffrey Lauvergne are coming off of playing in the EuroBasket 2015 tournament in the first couple of weeks of September. Both will be monitored for fatigue and held out as necessary, Malone said.