Originally Posted by CakeorDeath
Saying the Nuggets are better than the Jazz because they "played the Spurs tougher" (which is arguable, especially considering the Jazz beat the Spurs by 30 in game 3) is like saying the Jazz are better than the Mavs because Utah beat a GS team that handed Dallas their ass.
Its all about matchups. Dallas > Utah > Denver > GS
Utah was better than Denver this year. They won the division, swept the regular season series between the two teams, and were more consistent.
We'll see if that holds true next year.
That's all fine and good, but you have to remember the Nuggets had a fractured season this year (as they have for about 3 years now. 2 of those three years a starter had a season ending injury on opening night, and all three years featured a starter going down for the year within the first two games.) Add in the brawl suspensions this year, as well as having to adjust to 2 new point guards, and Nene not being healthy until mid year, and it's rather amazing that the team won 45 games.
For comparison purposes, the Jazz had only 1 15 mpg+ player (Giricek) play less than 70 games this season. The Nuggets had three who played more than 70 games (Camby, Kleiza, and Najera). That's a pretty significant difference, and basically evens the 6 game advantage the Jazz had in terms of record out when looking at the teams objectively.
That's not to say I think the Nuggets are automatically better than the Jazz, even after you take their respective series with San Antonio into account (between which the Nuggets was easily tougher played). I mean, the Boozer Williams combo is deadly, and when those two are on their game they are hard to beat. But without seeing the Nuggets given the road that the Jazz got (a good team in Houston and an overachiever in GS) it's hard to just claim the Jazz are better too.
Basically, if you claim the Jazz are better based just on where they got in the postseason, you must also admit that the Cavs are better than the Jazz. A real argument would be worth listening to. Unfortunately, we have to wait till next year to see it all pan out. Let's just hope that the Nuggets stay injury free for at least the first week of next season.