NBA News: Nuggets, Michael Malone Continue War Of Words With Lakers – originally posted on Sportslens.com
The Denver Nuggets were not quiet about winning the NBA Championship last year. Their boasting was headed by their head coach Michael Malone, who primarily targeted the Lakers and LeBron James in his celebratory sound bites. Players and coaches from the Lakers’ organization responded over the summer and during the team’s media day this week, and Malone is apparently tired of the talk.
NBA: Drama Continues Between Nuggets And Lakers
Anthony Davis has a message for the Denver Nuggets
“It was just a lot of talking. We get it, y’all won, but me and Bron had some conversations… we can’t wait [to play them].”
(h/t @LADEig )
— NBACentral (@TheDunkCentral) October 2, 2023
It started during the Western Conference Finals last year, when Malone was irked by the national narrative that surrounded Los Angeles losing, and not Denver winning. There were remarks made throughout the series and even during the team’s Finals run that threw shade at the Lakers, but things really compounded during the Nuggets’ championship parade.
Local Denver sports reporter and host Vic Lombardi had the chance to introduce Michael Malone before the coach’s inebriated speech, and referred to him as the “Lakers Daddy”.
This obviously didn’t sit well with the players on Los Angeles’ roster and their coaching staff. When speaking on a podcast in July, Lakers’ coach Darvin Ham chuckled through a question that was posed about Malone and the Nuggets:
“The Lakers Daddy, right? That’s what they call him now? God bless his soul. This shi*t ain’t over”
During media day on Monday, star center Anthony Davis sent a message to the Nuggets in his own interview, saying that him and LeBron heard all of the talking, and that they can’t wait to play Denver this year.
Nuggets Will Take On Lakers On Opening Night
“Michael Malone has had one successful season… Michael Malone will be an irrelevant, erroneous name in the history books of the NBA… Enjoy your 15 seconds of fame, talk about LeBron.”
Richard Sherman takes a shot at the Nuggets’ championship coach pic.twitter.com/cICul0GWwD
— ClutchPoints (@ClutchPoints) October 4, 2023
The drama train kept rolling at Nuggets practice this week, as Michael Malone was asked about his thoughts on the Lakers still talking about him and his team:
“Oh, they’re talking about us? That was what, like 4 months ago?…If they’re still worried about us, that’s on them. This is a new season, a new challenge, and it was a hell of a series against them. I know it was a 4-0 sweep, but all those games seemed like they went down to the wire. We have tremendous respect for that team. I have tremendous respect for Darvin Ham as a coach and the job that he did. But yeah, I don’t listen to any of that stuff. I don’t know what they’re saying, and if we’re on their minds, then I guess that’s on them”
As it stands today in early October, the Nuggets have the third-shortest odds of winning the NBA Championship, coming in at +550. They spent much of the off-season as the leaders on the board, but the recent moves made by the Bucks and Celtics have pushed them into the top-2.
The Lakers currently have the 5th shortest odds of any team, with a designation of +1000.
The two teams will face off on opening night in the NBA, which will be played on October 24th and broadcast on TNT.
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