Denver Nuggets Visiting Old Friends in Orlando

By Derek Kessinger
Howard Smith- US PRESSWIRE


The Denver Nuggets east coast debut for the 2012-2013 season meets up with former players tonight in Florida. The Orlando Magic’s line-up features recent acquisitions Arron Afflalo and Al Harrington. Both players were part of the Dwight Howard trade, which landed former Philadelphia 76er’s guard Andre Igoudala with Denver.

While Harrington is nursing an injury, Afflalo is set to play in tonight’s game against former teammates. At the end of the lockout a year ago, the Nuggets saw Afflalo as a key centerpiece to the future of this team. He spent three years total in Denver, including the last one on his newly awarded five-year, $43 million dollar deal. However Afflalo did not emerge as an elite player through the course of the shortened season. The lack of consistency made it easy for the Nuggets to ship Afflalo to the Magic.

Afflalo has the potential to be a closer in this league. He has the work ethic and mentality needed to take the game into his hands. He nailed a buzzer beater in a win over the Dallas Mavericks back in February 2010, when Carmelo Anthony was still on the team. However, Afflalo did not keep himself motivated through the lockout and was playing catch up with the Nuggets for most of the year.

The Nuggets lost their first game in Philadelphia in a sloppy effort that included 22 turnovers. Igoudala did not have the homecoming he was hoping for. They will travel to play the Miami Heat across the state Saturday night. The Nuggets are seen as a young team that might be able to compete for the western conference title in the spring.


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