The Denver Nuggets are a team that could go either way in the 2013-2014 NBA season. After shocking everyone with an impressive 57-win season last year, the Nuggets lost one of their leaders in Andre Iguodala and scrambled to replace him by signing Nate Robinson and acquiring Randy Foye as part of the Iggy sign-and-trade.
Under first-year head coach Brian Shaw, there’s really no telling what they could do. They could surprise everyone and remain a team that causes problems in the Western Conference or they could bottom out and miss the postseason entirely this year. Both scenarios are pretty much equal possibilities at this point. However, something that seems quite likely to happen is this team getting off to a rough start.
For starters, the Nuggets will have to adjust to Shaw’s philosophies and schemes. That won’t be an enormous issue after training camp and the preseason, but it still make take players like JaVale McGee and Robinson a bit to adjust to the change.
The biggest issue the Nuggets will face early on, though, is the fact of the key players that might not be there. With his recent legal issues, there’s no telling what the status of starting point guard Ty Lawson is going to be when the season gets underway. More than that, arguably their biggest scoring threat and one of their leaders in Danilo Gallinari likely won’t see any action until the middle of the season as he recovers from a partially torn ACL.
In the end, the Nuggets have a lot of things working against them at the start of the upcoming season. They could turn things around and have another surprising run in them, but it would be pretty unwise to expect that run to start right away.
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