You never expect Randy Foye to be a hero of a victory; not now for the Denver Nuggets, and not before on his previous NBA stops. A hot night from beyond the arc and one big shot to win the game in a 102-10 win over the Dallas Mavericks slightly changed the early perception about the 7-year veteran.
The biggest problem for Foye was being a 7th overall selection by the Boston Celtics 7 years ago. Instead of becoming a specialist in outside shots, teams actually thought he’s someone who can be a starting shooting guard or point guard. Not good enough when it comes to decision making, not a great defender and not versatile enough offensively, he disappointed again and again.
Every player has his use, and Foye’s use is shooting from the outside. He hit five three-pointers in the win over the Dallas Mavericks, including a three pointer against the awful defense the Mavs put on almost every night to give Denver a one point lead with just over a minute left in the game, followed by some great defense and another point from the line to close the game. Foye was actually the one who stopped Dirk Nowitzki from sending the game to overtime with aggressive defense on the German, who has quite the height advantage.
When I saw him with the ball, I thought, `I know he’s going to hit me and I know he’s going to fadeaway. I have no chance to block the shot, so don’t let him get comfortable. When he bumped me a little bit, I nudged him back.
Foye shot 5-of-12 from beyond the arc, finishing the game with 17 points. Ty Lawson, as usual in recent games, turning into five straight wins for the Nuggets, led the team with 20 points and nine assists. Kenneth Faried is looking more and more dominant next to the wrongly used J.J. Hickson, adding 18 points (7-7 from the field) and 14 rebounds including one of the best put-back dunks we’ve seen this season.
The Mavericks? More of the same. Monta Ellis scored 25 points, keeping his streak of at least 18 points in each game since the start of the season alive, while Dirk Nowitzki led the way with 27 points. However, that’s pretty much it from the Mavs. No defense whatsoever, making life very hard for Samuel Dalembert, facing rebounding battles and attackers in the paint almost on his own.
Rick Carlisle is trying too hard to get Shane Larkin into the groove, at the expense of Gal Mekel. The Israeli didn’t play, but is a better player at the moment than Larkin. In the Western conference, which punishes slow starts and early experimenting, the Mavs can’t afford to try and find out who their backup point guard is for much longer, especially if they’re making the wrong decision.
The Nuggets are very close to figuring out their rotation, as the Wilson Chandler – Jordan Hamilton switch is working quite well. However, at some point, Brian Shaw will realize that Hickson on the bench is the best solution to his team’s problems, while plugging Timofey Mozgov in the lineup is the move he needs to make.