It’s not business as usual for the Pistons as they are set to go against their longtime teammate Chauncey Billups for the first time since the trade for Allen Iverson tonight in Denver.
Chauncey has put his new team (2nd) in a place where they haven’t been in a while… the top half of the Western Conference. Denver (25-12) is on a 5 game winning streak even without the help of Carmelo Anthony, who is sidelined with a broken hand.
Now we all had thoughts about the trade before it happened and now. So The Nugg Doctor and I sat down for a little word association therapy session, his thoughts on Chauncey and mine on Allen Iverson.
ND: I’m not going to bore you with stats because we both know what each man brings to his team every night so what I like about Chauncey Billups is the steady hand he brings. The Nuggets are a team that in recent years could give you a heart attack on any given night, but this year things are a little bit different with Billups. The Nuggets are undefeated when entering the fourth quarter with a lead and are also undefeated this year when Chauncey reaches double-figures in assists. This is a testament to the change in basketball culture within this team that Billups brought. Chauncey’s presence, with his leveling of the emotions and contagious focus on the moment, has silently put a killer instinct back in the Nuggets regardless of the few sizable leads they have given up to a few questionable teams.
ND: It could just be the honeymoon feeling lingering, but I can’t really think of anything I don’t like about having Mr. Big Shot back in Denver. He’s a hometown hero that’s quickly becoming a Cinderella story. Nobody thought the Nuggets would be second place overall in the Western Conference at practically the midway point in the year, but yet here we are at 25-12 and with only the Lakers out to a better start in the West.
N4S: Changes he brought
ND: The biggest change in the Nuggets that I’ve seen directly attributed to Chauncey Billups is a change in basketball culture. The Nuggets have been a bit of circus sideshow the last few years with a ton of statistical and individual anomalies as well as other honors, but that hasn’t added up to a hill of beans come playoff time. Barring ANOTHER serious injury, that shouldn’t be the case this year. The main reason I believe this is in addition to the steady hand I’ve already mentioned the fact that Chauncey has won a championship ring, and a Finals MVP award, and that has guys listening with their ears perked when Chauncey has something to say. Before the trade, I felt that this was kind of a me-for-me basketball team, win or lose, made up of individuals who were going to try and fill their own agendas often times at the detriment to the team. This year, Chauncey’s leadership and championship resume has been a focal point based upon his team-first style of play and the Nuggets have bought into that and it’s been paying off.
ND: I’ve been most pleasantly surprised by Chauncey’s defense. AI was way too much of a gambler on defense for me personally and after watching the way Chauncey more discriminately picks his opportunities on defense it was an area of improvement that the Nuggets desperately needed.
ND: I’d settle for a first round win in the playoffs, but honestly I’m expecting more than that with this year’s Nuggets as long as they can all stay healthy. Kenyon Martin is having a fantastic year, Nene is true inspiration after fighting cancer, and with the gusto of Carmelo and the guidance of Chauncey there is no reason why this team couldn’t make it to the Western Finals. Denver’s also has a great cast the role players with Dahntay Jones, Linas Kleiza, J.R. Smith, and the “Birdman” Chris Andersen bringing their wildly different but effective games every night makes this a very special crew.
Thanks go out to Nick Sclafani, AKA The Nugg Doctor, for giving us some Denver insight. Remember to head on over to The Nugg Doctor for my thoughts on Iverson.
“I’m looking forward to seeing my guys. It’s going to be fun,” Billups said.
But he’s not out to prove anything about anybody giving up on him too soon.
“I’m good. I’ve proved everything I could in that city. I’m doing it now here,” Billups said. “I’m just looking forward to seeing my dudes, competing, playing, having a fun game. That’s all.” Via NBA.com
- The Pistons are likely to have Sheed back, but Rip won’t be able to go against his old friend.
- Nuggets love CB’s leadership.
- A look at the trade from the Denver Post.
- Dumars-Building a contender.
- Not just another game.
- If you didn’t catch Chauncey Billups on WDFN’s Stoney and Wojo show (audio), he’s convinced it was a good trade for both team.
- A quick Hello to Chauncey, a few days later he was gone.
Tip off is at 9:00 P.M. and will be locally broadcast on FSN . If you can’t watch the broadcast, tune into 1130 AM The Fan. Can’t do either? Follow the game on NBA.com.
As one of the fans who was cool with the trade, and still am for the present and future. I have so much respect for Chauncey always so classy and passionate about everything. It was great to hear him talk about “his boys” the way he did.
I appreciate everything Chauncey did in Detroit, and at times man i couldnt talk the dude up enough, all my friends most not bball fans knew exactly who Big Shot Billups was and what he could do on the court.
Much Love Chauncey!! You’ll will be remembered always as our Finals MVP. And one of the greatest Pistons of all time.
i don’t care so much about the AI return to denver or the fact that we get to see chauncey again. I wanna see the Stuckey Vs Chauncey match up. that ought to be interesting!
AI should be jacked for the game tonight.
Great to see Chauncey play tonight against the Pistons. Stuckey should match up with Chauncey. Hope sheed and Richard play.
Gotta get video of reunions… i wanna see em cry.
but let’s talk about this…
the media keeps saying detroit is not a contender or an elite team in the east anymore. haven’t we beat orlando and cleveland? i’m pretty sure we beat the hawks and we got a couple more games vs boston too. i’d say we’re still up there.
Man, the guide on comcast said the game started at 9:30, and I missed the start of the game.
The media is an ass….
They laughed at the stones in the 04 finals too.
I don’t hang my hat on what experts think!!!
The run with the latest big thing….bunch of
pontificating blowhards if you ask me….
How are these chumps gonna hate on Dyess? No wonder he would rather retire than play there again.
Showtime eats so much so that he has the energy to drain thows clutch free throws. It’s funny how Pistons were getting killed by missing free throws, wins the game on free throws.
Anyone see the Boston-Cleveland game? What’s up with the Cavs blue and yellow jerseys? Since when did there colors become red, blue, and yellow?? BTW they are outrageously ugly along with there warm-up gear!
Great win for Detroit even though they didn’t play there best.
Cant believe they booed Dyess! How rude!
It’s still hard watching Chauncey play with another team. I kept thinking what if he was still on our team.
Hopefully Rodney will be better for tomorrow’s game.
Lastly- I couldnt stand looking at Chris Andersen, with the hair and colorful tattoos he looks like he should be playing in some kind of band rather than the NBA.
I kept thinking they looked like the Lakers jerseys. Not as bad as the gold and white Wizards uniforms.
Yea they did look like the Lakers jerseys. I saw clips after the game and I thought they were showing the Lakers but the announcers said it was the Cavs and Celtics game instead. So I was confused about it. I hadn’t realized they changed there colors to red, yellow, and blue. Anyone know when that happened? I always thought there colors were red and white.
The Nuggets broadcasting crew kept calling Afflalo a rookie out of UCLA.
I guess thats why he iced the game.
I love Chauncey Billups.
good to see chauncey playing well, but it was kinda funny to hear him say he wanted to be remembered in detroit as coming hard to work every night.. i think we all know that was not the case his last few years (esp uunder flip). he sometimes wouldn’t attempt a shot until the late third and you can say all u want about him trying to get his teammates involved but he was complacent at times too. not saying it was only him but i just found his statement kinda funny.
ANYWAYS… so glad we pulled out the win with half our roster in pain. now all we need to do is pull a miracle in Utah (considering they have our number) and come home with a wonderful road trip in our pocket.
one more thing…
CLEVELAND LOOK DOWN CAUSE UR NOT TAKING THE CENTRAL FROM US JUST YET!!!! 6 1/2 BEHIND … WE’LL CATCH U!
can AI please get a little love homies?!?!?! he was outscored 20 to 3 at halftime by chauncey, but he was absolutely confident, quick as hell, and almost back to the old AI form in the 2nd half… cmon now, he was amazing you cant front, along with tay, and great D that they don’t practice in enver.. i mean no one even mentioned how great he was in the 2nd half (minus that boneheaded play on jr smith at the end) but we woulda never won if it wasnt for his mafnificient play.. although ultimately a team effort, and i say win of the season.. especially the way this baby started.. be that agressive and assertive AI and we wont lose!!! lets go pistons!
those cleveland jerseys are fire i love them.. they have marooon on the collar. i miss chauncey cant wait for the return to mo town tho.. cleveland is a beast btw stil think we can beat them tho kinda…
oh yea and we lost to the hawks mobius
quote of the night!
“That is all fun at the start, but at some point it becomes a game and you just try to win the best you can,” Billups said. “It was a little strange. There were a couple times in the third quarter when I kept looking up at the clock, we were actually up and I kept for some reason thinking we were down because I kept looking at the Pistons’ (score). It was just kind of weird.”
dyess was laughing about it and thought it was koo!
but if it werent for iverson we would of never cought up