Two games between the Denver Nuggets and the San Antonio Spurs, two heartbreaking losses for the Nuggets, who dropped a game they should have won for the second time in less than a week. Unlike last week’s bunk charge call against Carmelo Anthony, which negated his game-winning shot, Denver Stiffs points out that last night’s 109-103 loss to the Spurs came down to the Nuggets not having a closer on the floor. It was an uphill battle for Denver, with San Antonio sitting at 15-2 in their home building. But the Nuggets went cold as the game wound down (box score via NBA.com). Nevertheless, Denver welcomed defensive leader Kenyon Martin back to the floor for the first time this season, and JR Smith had one of his best games this fall/winter, including an amazing 360 layup that is easily in the running for play of the year (video below).
It didn’t help that the Nuggets were short Melo, who traveled to San Antonio but left before the game to be with family after learning that his 36-year-old sister, Michelle, had died. She lived in Baltimore with her four children, but a pre-existing medical condition took her life Tuesday, according to The Denver Post. The Nuggets don’t expect Anthony to return until after Christmas, so he’ll definitely miss the team’s Christmas-day game against Oklahoma City. Trade talks surrounding Anthony had been heating up again, but CBS Sports reports that the Nuggets have temporarily suspended any discussions on a trade in light of Anthony’s loss.