Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports
The Nuggets are a very good team that are most likely going to make the playoffs but they've recently hit a rough patch in their season losing 4 out of their last 5 games. They hit a bit of a low point on Friday night when they were defeated by the 16-37 Wizards despite Ty Lawson having an incredible game with 27 points and 12 assists. The Nuggets are currently in the 5th spot in the Western Conference, which is pretty exceptional considering the strength of the Western Conference and the fact the team really doesn't have a superstar player like Durant or LeBron.
The closet thing the Nuggets have to a superstar is veteran forward Danilo Gallinari, who's averaging 17.4 PPG on 42% shooting. Gallinari is one of the best shooting forwards in the NBA and will use his 6'10 frame to put shots over the 6'7 Kidd-Gilchrist. MKG is an extremely solid defensive player but there aren't many players who have the length of Gallinari. While Danilo shouldn't have any problem putting his shots over MKG, he's a high volume shooter who's shooting 42% of the field which is slightly above average for an outside shooter.
While the match-up between MKG and Gallinari will be at the center of attention, my eyes will be on the showdown between Byron "Double Deuce" Mullens and JaVale "Pierre" McGee. Byron is coming off of one of his worst games of his career on Friday where he only had 2 points and 6 rebounds on an abysmal 1-for-12 shooting. Mullens's game perturbs me as a basketball fan because he's a center that shoots less than 40% from the field. Meanwhile, Denver features the center platoon of McGee and Kosta Koufos.
McGee is becoming one of the more entertaining players in the league because of his off-the-court actions on social media but is an inconsistent role player on the court by averaging 19 points and 9.2 repounds per 36 minutes. Koufos isn't an enigmatic player like McGee but is solid low post scorer making 60% of his shots from inside the post. Brendan Haywood should be decent coming off of the bench against either Koufos or McGee but I still expect both of those players to have solid nights because of Charlotte's lack of front-court depth.
Honestly, my mind draws a blank when I think of ways that this Bobcats team can win tonight's game because the Nuggets are a better team all around. But the beauty of sports is that any team can win any game. Miracles happen all the time in the game of basketball and it might happen tonight in Charlotte when we least expect it.