Note - I thought I had posted this on Wednesday night after getting back from the game. Apparently I only saved it. My bad.
- Kevin Durant looks so skinny in person. I've been a big fan of his and have argued that strength doesn't really matter if you're that good, but it is going to matter for him. Earl Watson's arms were twice as big as his. And when he stood next to Nene, K-Mart, or even Najera, he looked more like an extremely tall 10 year old than a professional athlete. I think he's going to have some real problems with physical defenders, and I wouldn't count on his body lasting throughout an entire season. With that said, he is going to be very good.
- After the early game excitement wore off, AI looked like a real life PG for the game. He controlled the tempo, didn't pound the ball too long, distributed well, played great defense, and ended up with 14 assists and 7 steals. If he can play like this every game we are going to win a lot of games this year.
- Judging by warm-ups (and later during the game) it looks like Carmelo has added the 3 to his repertoire. If he can hit about 35% from deep this season, he will be absolutely unguardable. I can't wait!
- The team dropped the ball a little bit with the player intros. They built the excitement, the lights were off, strobes were flashing, music was bumpin', Rocky was running around waiving his Nuggets flag, and then the first player they introduce is Bobby Jones. Then the crowd gives a half-hearted cheer as they all look at each other trying to figure out exactly why the fuck Bobby Jones is playing for the Nuggets again.
- There were several "Tulo" chants during the game. It still blows me away that this town is that crazy over the Rockies.
- I left the game feeling pretty good about our team. Sure we struggled early, and the Sonics are not going to be a good team this year, but look at it this way; We played without Chucky Atkins, without JR Smith, with Nene and K-Mart playing limited minutes due to injuries, we had to start Yakhouba (and play him considerable minutes), Mike Wilkes had to play 12 minutes, we didn't play all that well the first three quarters...... and we still scored 120 points and won by 20. Imagine how badly we would have crushed this team at full strength.
I've got a good feeling about this team.