NBA 2018-19: 3 Talking points from Minnesota Timberwolves vs Denver Nuggets

Denver Nuggets v Minnesota Timberwolves
Denver Nuggets v Minnesota Timberwolves

The Denver Nuggets seemed to rediscover their best form whilst beating Minnesota Timberwolves 133-107 at the Pepsi Center in Denver.

Things have not been going right for the Nuggets for the last few weeks. Just like the Warriors, they've seemed out of whack and their performance has been surprisingly low. They had lost four of five of their last games and just seemed a little confused.

The issue was that the Nuggets could not get enough out of the bench, unlike the game against the Warriors where the starters were failing to convert.

However, last night they faced the Timberwolves, a team that was never a part of the playoff race until recently and brought their best to record a convincing win.

Here are 3 talking points from the contest:


#1 In-game changes from coach Michael Malone work wonders

Michael Malone is a man on a mission. He is working not only to become the NBA Coach of the year, but has also established himself as an essential piece in every aspect of the Nuggets
Michael Malone is a man on a mission. He is working not only to become the NBA Coach of the
year,
but has also established himself as an essential piece in every aspect of the Nuggets

It's no secret that Denver are one of the most stacked teams in the NBA this season, but with the playoffs around the corner, teams are looking to cut-short their rotation. Speaking about this, coach Malone said, "Definitely looking at ways to improve our team, and if shortening our rotation's the answer, definitely willing to do that, playing less guys, more minutes and kind of going with that as we head into the postseason. It's all about trying to find a rhythm, because when we had it, we were really good. And now we're kind of out of rhythm," said Malone after the game. This rotation tactic seemed to be what made the difference between the last four matches and this one for the Nuggets.

Placing his faith in the right reserves, he chose the right men to get the Nuggets out of their funk. Although this may seem insignificant as they are now 4-4 since the All-Star game, their gameplay showed a difference that could help them in the run-up to the playoffs. There are still 16 games to go and anything could happen.

#2 Selfless offense from the Nuggets does the trick

The Denver Nuggets seem to have realized the importance of distributing the offensive workload
The Denver Nuggets seem to have realized the importance of distributing the offensive workload

The Denver Nuggets had from Friday till Tuesday to marinate in their loss against the NBA Champions, the Golden State Warriors and gave them plenty of time to think about how to better adapt their game with an eye towards the playoffs.

Through Malone's new strategy and blunt criticism, the team has come to perform as a selfless unit of the offensive end. They had a record 40 assists last night alone and each and every player with court time played their part in the impressive 133-point total.

In the first half itself, eight nuggets scored a minimum of five points, many of whom were playing off the bench. Further, the others made sure to pass and minimize opportunities for turnovers.

Denver's a team that certainly relies on moving the ball, with the game against the Timberwolves proving to be a prime example.

#3 Paul Millsap caps off solid night with a long-range buzzer beater

Paul Millsap made sure to get in a buzzer beater at the end of the third quarter
Paul Millsap made sure to get in a buzzer beater at the end of the third quarter

Paul Millsap played an impressive 33 minutes last night. In this time he managed to make a solid 23 points (8 of 12 inside from the field, including 4 of 5 from the three-point mark). His contribution was important to the Nuggets twenty-six point win against the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Once the ball was in the hands of the Nuggets it seemed as though they were putting in little to no effort into pushing away the Timberwolves who were almost constantly at a point deficit of greater than 10.

For this buzzer beater though, the veteran Paul Millsap took two steps and heaved the ball across the court from just inside the half line to make it. The third quarter then closed at 94-78 giving the Nuggets a 16 point lead.

Quick Links