Mark Cuban, come on down!: Advantage Denver in the Nuggets-Mavericks matchup
On ESPN Radio's Mike and Mike in the Morning show today, hosts Mike Greenberg and Mike Golic declared the just-completed Denver Nuggets-New Orleans Hornets series to have been the most lopsided in NBA history, given that the Nugs outscored the Hornets by an average of over 24 points per contest even though they lost one game.
Of course, stats lie, and these do, too: Last night's game was tied 49-all at halftime and was fairly competitive most of the way. That said, the outcome was never really in doubt. As someone who's grown to expect the Nuggets to build leads in big games, then slowly give them back and fade at the end, it was more than a little strange to have known in my heart of hearts that they'd eventually win going away -- but I could get used to it.
And now, Dallas, which is a better opponent from the Nuggets' standpoint than San Antonio, who the Mavs bested in the first round. Sure, the Spurs are aging and beat up, and Denver fans wouldn't have had to suffer through the dreaded Manu Ginobili Flop Parade: I love seeing him on the bench, forced to remain upright. But the Nugs would have had to battle their history of gagging it up against the Spurs, particularly in the playoffs -- remember San Antonio's '90s-era sweep, not to mention the Spurs easy first-round victories a couple of years back? In contrast, the Nuggets have traditionally matched up well against Dallas, winning all four head-to-heads this season. And as an added bonus, there's a very good chance Mavs owner Mark Cuban will lose his shit at some point, which is always fun.
Will the Nuggets win the next series, too? They won't be setting any NBA records this time around -- but the answer is "yes."