2012 NBA Playoff Wrap-Up: Denver Nuggets


It was a hard-fought series but the Denver Nuggets fell short to the Los Angeles Lakers in a thrilling seven-game series. Not much was expected out of these Nuggets but their fight and determination suddenly made the future brighter. I talked to Jonathan Maness (@nuggetslove) of NuggLove.Com about what had just transpired against the mighty Lakers.

Lakers in SEVEN. A few made shots here and there and the Nuggets might have pulled it off. Tell me how you feel about these Nuggets.

It's hard not to get excited about this young Nuggets squad. They could have laid down after falling behind 3-1, but they had nothing to lose and made a series out of it. I think it is fair to say that Games 5 and 6 was the best they played this season - especially Ty Lawson. The best part about the playoff run was that many of the young players received valuable postseason experience. The future is bright for the Nuggets, but they still have a ways to go.

Is there anything new that you discovered about the Nuggets' personnel. I think there was one obvious player, right?

In my eyes, there were two players that emerged in the playoffs - Ty Lawson and JaVale McGee. Lawson, too often this season, would be passive and let the defense dictate the pace of the game, but that wasn't the case in the final two games of the series. Lawson caught fire in Game 6, everything he threw up went in but in Game 7 he just played his game. He got to the basket, he pushed the pace and didn't let up. When he plays that way, he is tough to stop; he just needs to do it more frequently.

McGee had some good moments in the series, and some not so good moments. He caught national attention for his performance in Game 5, but in my opinion Game 7 was his best game of the series. Mainly because of how he played on defense. That's going to be his calling card in the NBA. He still has lapses here and there on the floor, but most of his mistakes happen on the offensive side of the ball. If he can accept what his limitations are on offense, I think he could be a very special defensive player.

What is next for Denver in terms of the roster? What else is needed?

Obviously, the biggest thing is re-signing McGee. However, it is a little worrisome how much money he wants. A contract similar to what DeAndre Jordan signed with the Clippers would be fair considering how raw he is and his upside. I personally would love for the Nuggets to go after Kevin Garnett, Lou Williams or even Jason Terry. They obviously need a shooter, but I think a veteran leader would help too. Especially since Andre Miller will probably not be back.

PHOTO CREDIT: Andrew D. Bernstein/Getty Images.

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