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enemy lines
L. Jon Wertheim
October 29, 2001
an opposing team's scout sizes up the Nuggets
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October 29, 2001

Enemy Lines

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an opposing team's scout sizes up the Nuggets

Unless something totally unexpected happens, this team will be the worst in the West until Antonio McDyess gets back in February from his injured left knee. The Nuggets are going to get buried early, and I'm not sure they'll be that much better after McDyess returns. They don't guard the basket at all....

With Avery Johnson and Nick Van Exel they seem to be following that trend of using two smaller interchangeable guards, like the Rockets with Steve Francis and Cuttino Mobley. Except these guys aren't as good, and they're very small, at 5'11" and 6'1". The guess is, they'll play Van Exel at two because he can break down defenses. But who's he going to kick it to? Who's a threat? George McCloud? James Posey? Van Exel's a threat, that's who. What, can he kick it to himself?

...Plus, Van Exel is living proof of the old adage that you can't change a zebra's stripes. He won't make you better, especially now that he's thinking he's got to do more. He may lead the league in bad shots....

The Nuggets have a ton of O.K. point guards with Kenny Satterfield and Omar Cook to help out Avery, but neither of them is ready to lead a team....

Raef LaFrentz is fairly solid, but Dan Issel showed last year he didn't like him at center, so he'll go with Kevin Willis What you can say about Willis is this: He's better than anyone else they have. Aleksandar Radojevic will be ready some day, but right now he's a stickman....

Issel is a good guy, but he's going to miss John Lucas tremendously. He needs someone on the staff who can step up to the plate, who could be a terrific head coach himself, and that guy is gone....

What's it say when your best off-season move is getting Isaiah Rider?