Originally Posted by NuggetsFan
A.I actually had one of the best seasons of his career with Denver. 3rd lowest tpg, 2nd highest FG% of his entire career. Put up 26\7\3 with 2 steals and looked like the usual A.I. Kinda why Detroit was willing to give up Billups whom than went on to be Melo's 2nd banana, not K-Mart. Wes Persons barely got any burn that year and if my memory serves me correctly he actually shot pretty well for them from distance
Even in the earlier years you could probably argue 'Dre was just as good as Martin if not better.
Either way I disagree this is the best team put around Carmelo. Melo always had talent around him. Just wasn't going to upset those teams and his inefficiency in the playoffs at times is what helped contribute to those Nuggets teams rolling over in 4-5 games. However he's finally out of the dreaded Western Conference. Now he needs to get his shit together and get NY home court advantage which is a realistic possibility and than face a team that's beatable.
A.I. probably still to this day has something left, but doesn't change the fact that he couldn't adjust his game to what teams needed. Yeah, he put up stats in Denver, of course he would...Denver was the most talent he'd ever played with an he wasn't the focus of the defense AND he still got to jack up shots. But, he should've adjusted his game to make guys better instead of trying to win another scoring title. The Billups trade was such a success, because it was really a less is more move. Yes, he was needed as a second scorer on that team, but he found his points within the offense or open looks in transition and provided what the team has needed since Melo was drafted....consistent 3pt shooting.
at defending Wesley Persons (wasn't that his last year, and how many open shots did he hit in the Clippers series?).
You can name off all the talent you want that was in Denver, but it was usually ill fitting over reaches. Bringing Kmart in as a second option, while playing him for a year while he needed surgery the summer they signed him, and if Miller was just as good as the 2nd option....well that's sad. Miller is an ill fitting pg period. He can't really dictate pace, except to slow it down, can't space the floor, doesn't really break down defenses, he's a game manager who can get you a few cheap assists and score out of the offenses flow.
Honestly, the most talented team in Denver that Melo had was the one he left in 2010. That was a top 3 team in the West IMO if Melo applied himself. Still small upfront though. And that was a team starting Kenyon Martin at pf, a year before the Kmart we saw last season...the Kmart looking for a contract worth more than the minimum, and ole 6'8 12ppg and 7 rpg Nene at Center. But they had depth as Afflalo was finally developed, and Ty Lawson was ready to take over the starting role (of course dumbass Karl wouldn't make that move) but was a nice bench spark along with J.R. AND Harrington was great frontcourt depth.
But there were 2 main flaws in Denver. 1. It took about 6 or 7 years to find even 1 consistent outside shooter that deserves playing time in the NBA. Vo Leonard is not a NBA championship team's starting shooting guard.
2. George Karl couldn't consistently get good defensive play out of his team. Karl and the media can blame Melo all you want, but let's get real here. And Carmelo wasn't on last year's team.