This was supposed to be a great stretch for the Denver Nuggets: They’ve got their full roster and head coach all in one spot for the first time since the middle of last season, and the current run of games has them playing some of the league’s worst teams. And yet, Denver lost to the league-worst Sacramento Kings 122-102 last night—just one night after a pitiful loss to another crappy California team. (Put another way, the Nuggets, now 20-15, have lost two consecutive games to teams with a combined record of 19-49.) “Last night was a disappointing loss. Tonight was an embarrassing loss,” Carmelo Anthony tells The Denver Post. “We’re just frustrated right now after losses to teams we should beat…. There wasn’t any focus.”
Regardless, ESPN reports that Melo will probably be staying in Denver through the February 24 trade deadline, because the right deal is hard to come by. The latest reports have the Nuggets and New Jersey Nets still trying to work out a deal that would trade Melo for Nets rookie Derrick Favors, two first-round draft picks, and another player (to clear salary-cap space), but things aren’t quite lining up. A third team, the Cleveland Cavaliers, almost joined with the Nets and the Nuggets to make the deal work around Christmastime, but it fell apart when the Nuggets and Cavaliers expressed interest in the same first-round draft pick for 2012.