Well, in my one of my previous articles I had a breakdown of the Denver Nuggets training camp roster and who I thought would make the team. I had Keith Brumbaugh making the final Nuggets roster, because I thought he possessed skills that the Nuggets were in dire need of including rebounding and outside shooting.
Today the Denver Nuggets made their first cut and it so happened to be Keith Brumbaugh. Not Dontaye Draper (a point guard) or Kurt Looby (a center), but Keith Brumbaugh. This prediction was worse than the one I had with Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston actually staying together.
I am some what upset with the fact that the Nuggets cut Keith lose so soon. There weren't many details on his release. It could have been an injury issue, or it could just be the fact that Renaldo Balkman has been playing lights out in the two games the Nuggets had this pre-season notably the game in Utah.
Numerous reports are saying Balkman will play back up small forward behind Carmelo Anthony. This leaves Joey Graham and James White in a bit of a jam. With JR Smith and Arron Afflalo set at the shooting guard position that doesn't leave much room for Graham or White.
I expect the Nuggets to keep Joey Graham for depth purposes as a combo shooting guard and small forward, but I don't see him really fitting into George Karl's rotation. James White has been very impressive and if the Nuggets don't decide to keep him on the roster, I hope they send him to the D-league to let him develop his game a bit. I see a lot of raw potential in the video of James White this pre-season.
If I had to make a more educated prediction, I would say the Nuggets final roster will look like this:
PG: Billups, Carter, Lawson
SG: Afflalo, Smith, Graham*
SF: Melo, Balkman, Graham*
PF: Martin, Allen
C: Nene, Anderson, Petro.
*I have Graham at SG and SF because I expect him be a combo SG/SF.
This leaves Dontaye Draper and Keith Looby getting cut. I then expect James White to stick around in D-league and possibly get called up at some point in the season in case of an injury.
As far as George Karl's rotation goes, I expect Afflalo to start due to his defense and his scoring (much improved from Dahntay Jones) along with Billups, Melo, Martin and Nene. I expect to see second rotation of Carter, Smith, Balkman, Allen and "Birdman" Anderson. I see Graham, and Lawson getting some minutes, but not as much as the 10 players above.
Look for Smith to also play some time at small forward when Karl throws out Carter with Billups. We may also see a little of Lawson with Billups as well.
Stay tuned for more Nuggets news and a recap of the Nuggets, Pacers game.
Check out more of my Nuggets articles and MTRmedia.com under Nuggets on the G.O. (GO as in Garrett Olsen) Thanks!