Does this headline seem a little familiar to you? A little déjà vu? It’s because less than two weeks ago George Karl called Andre Miller one of the best point guards of all time. He clarified the statement by saying he looked at Miller as a traditional lead guard, a player who did all the small things, never took stuff off the table and was always a team-first guy. It still made headlines because, well, Andre Miller is to “greatest point guards of all time” what Ja Rule is to “greatest rappers of all time.”
But in related news, the Nuggets have won six games in a row after barely surviving against Portland last night, and are suddenly just one game behind Golden State for the West’s No. 5 seed. They’ve done that despite having a ridiculously difficult opening schedule, all the while their best players started colder than ice. Suddenly, at 24-16 and with February fast approaching, people want to know: do the Nuggets deserve any All-Stars?
Karl was asked, and once again sang the praises of his (now… again) backup point guard, Miller. He told The Denver Post:
“I think it’s sad. I don’t see anyone mentioning any of our guys,” he said. “We get a couple more wins this week, and we could have one of the better records in the West. We don’t get much mention.”
Asked which of his players he deems worthy for consideration, Karl paused for a second.
“That would be really difficult to say,” Karl said. “I’d probably say Andre Miller. From the standpoint of efficient minutes, Andre’s given us as efficient minutes as anybody. But I think Ty (Lawson) and (Andre Iguodala) and (Danilo Gallinari) all have had moments. And I’m excited, because I think they all are getting stronger and more confident, and their consistency is getting at a higher level. But because of their up-and-down moments, it’s going to be difficult for them to get any recognition.”
In just over 25 minutes a night, Miller is currently averaging 9.1 points and 5.8 assists. He won’t get any All-Star votes. It’s probably a better argument to look at everyone else. After shooting under 39 percent from the floor through November, Gallinari is dropping 19.9 points and 5.9 rebounds a game (plus 42 percent three-point shooting) in January. He might not get voted in by the coaches, but he deserves mentioning.
There’s also Ty Lawson, averaging 14.4 points and leading the team in assists (6.9) and steals (1.5). Yet because of names like Parker, Westbrook, Bryant, Harden and Paul, Lawson doesn’t stand much of a chance.
The team’s best chance might be Kenneth Faried. He’s one of the hardest-working players in the league, and is currently dropping a double-double (12.5 points, 10.2 rebounds). But again, with a crowded Western Conference frontcourt – and an even more crowded Denver bench eating into everyone’s numbers – it’s looking like the Nuggets won’t be represented on the court in Houston for the midseason classic… no matter what their coach thinks.
Should anyone from the Nuggets make the All-Star Game?
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