Rudy Gay; Andre Miller; Jonas Valanciunas ; Kenneth Faried
Denver Nuggets 108 Final
Recap | Box Score
109 Toronto Raptors
Amir Johnson, PF 34 MIN | 4-6 FG | 0-0 FT | 7 REB | 3 AST | 2 STL | 2 BLK | 0 TO | 8 PTS | +2

Not one of his stronger games, as somewhat expected going up against Faried who makes you work. No complaints in terms of effort and but looked slow-footed at times and didn’t get the spell of rest he needed due to Bargnani’s ineffectiveness. If Ed was around, this was one of those games where Johnson would’ve been given a bit of a rest.

Rudy Gay, SF 25 MIN | 6-14 FG | 4-5 FT | 4 REB | 3 AST | 3 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 17 PTS | +10

Started off like a man on fire, but his tendency to play at half-pace on defense puts him in vulnerable defensive positions, which is partially a reason why he picked up four fouls by the early third and had to sit the entire quarter. Was a bit of a no-show in the fourth until he got his chance with the game on the line. Very similar play as in Indiana and delivered. Again.

Jonas Valanciunas, C 32 MIN | 1-3 FG | 6-6 FT | 8 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 2 BLK | 4 TO | 8 PTS | +11

Does he make a silly rookie mistake ever third possession? Probably, just look at his turnover count. But damn, this guy is in the fight for every single rebound that’s out there. Heavy minutes against physical players means a good learning experience tonight, and if this season is about developing, injury aside, he’s working doing it in spades.

Kyle Lowry, PG 37 MIN | 4-10 FG | 1-1 FT | 4 REB | 10 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 4 TO | 11 PTS | 0

Burned by Lawson all game long, partly because he was too aggressive eon the perimeter. And aggressive on defense sometimes means lazy, as in, reaching for the ball, trying to poke it from behind instead of holding his own up-front, etc. Offensively, had a statistically alright game but there are defensive and offensive possessions where the team is desperately looking for stability and leadership and he just doesn’t provide enough of it.

DeMar DeRozan, SG 39 MIN | 8-18 FG | 6-6 FT | 8 REB | 3 AST | 2 STL | 1 BLK | 2 TO | 22 PTS | +1

Matched up against the physical Hamilton, was finding the going tough but managed to hit a couple nice fades over him. Still finding where/how to get his shots with Rudy being the #1 option now. We’ve seen more one-on-one stuff from him of late than we’d like, but the introduction of Gay has meant two things: 1) he sees less double-teams, 2) he doesn’t get as many first touches. He’s adjusting to both and needs to be given a little more time. Once he/Casey learn how to use Gay properly, he will profit. For now,k though, this level of posterization will suffice.

Landry Fields, SF 15 MIN | 2-3 FG | 4-5 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 8 PTS | 0

With Gay in foul trouble, came in to draw a few fouls and was useful in a short stint. Job well done.

Andrea Bargnani, C 18 MIN | 2-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 4 PTS | -8

Struggled on defense big time against the agility of the Denver front-line. This was not a good matchup for him and it showed right from the start. Randolph and Faried can neutralize his quickness with ease and eat him up on the glass. This was never going to end well for him, and it didn’t.

John Lucas, PG 14 MIN | 5-9 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 14 PTS | +1

After a dud of a second quarter where Denver erased the Raptors lead on his watch, he came in the fourth to hit four massive threes. The best part was that they were shots that were within the offensive, and funnily enough, the two he forced he missed badly. Nice, somewhat unexpected against Miller, offensive punch from the bench.

Alan Anderson, SG 13 MIN | 4-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 10 PTS | -7

A couple of big shots in the fourth quarter. This guy was due for an efficient performance and he did well in limited minutes. Had a massive offensive rebound off his own miss late which avoided some potentially fatal pressure.

Terrence Ross, SG 14 MIN | 3-6 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 7 PTS | -5

Hit a three early, but overall looked very bad. Very out of sync in terms of footwork, and couldn’t defend anyone, picking up three quick fouls.

Dwane Casey

He did not adjust to Lawson at all and did not even give the Denver PG a second defensive look to think about. I thought this was a game ideal for Quincy Acy, given Denver’s agility but he never saw the court. Also didn’t see a zone despite Denver being a poor 3-pt shooting team and killing us off the dribble. The final play was nice, a clearout for Rudy and luckily for us, Denver didn’t double.