Wednesday, April 29th, 2009 at 11:00 am  |  22 responses

The Difficult Task of Guarding Chris Paul

For the Nuggets, who lead the series 3-1, it’s a three-man job: “Dahntay Jones, Anthony Carter and Chauncey Billups have taken turns defending the ultra-quick Paul. They’ve made it a habit of denying him the ball, contesting his shots, sliding in front of dribbles, pressing him, trapping him — and yes — shoving him at every opportunity. This was never more obvious than in Denver’s 121-63 victory in Game 4 on Monday night at the New Orleans Arena that pushed its lead to 3-1 in the series. Paul, whose team faces elimination tonight at the Pepsi Center in Denver, scored four points and committed six turnovers. ‘We want Chris Paul to feel like he’s being blitzed, like he has a linebacker coming up the middle and one off the side,’ Denver Coach George Karl said. ‘He quarterbacked the team well in Game 3, and we didn’t want to give him the same space in Game 4.’ With the exception of Game 3 — a 32-point, 12-assist Paul performance — the three-prone Denver defensive attack has befuddled Paul, while keeping the Hornets’ offense from finding its rhythm.”

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  • Rasheedionics

    I think George Karl is underrated defensive coach. Remember when he used to coach Sonics with GP and Shawn Kemp… He had them as one of the best defensive teams in the league with original defensive plays. It’s because of George Karl NBA was forced to come up with defensive 3 second violation rule. I don’t know if anyone remembers that.

  • http://www.lkz.ch Darksaber

    That sonics team had the best trapping / rotating nucleus of the 90′s. You’d pass away from GP, then try to evade Shrempf, then get boxed in by Kemp. Never seen anyone use a press that effectively in the nba since

  • Statik

    Luckily for the Nugs this series containing one player is the key to the next round. Lets see if their newfound D is real when they meet Dallas

  • niQ

    i don’t think anyone would’ve thought denver could be this good, this fast.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Blinguo

    Not just those 3, but Birdman grabbed onto Chris by the top of the head on one play in the lane as birdman spiraled out of control on an early jump. Paul didn’t even use his hands to shake him off in disgust. So I guess you can call these guys the Paul Wall?
    Birdman can be Federline to Hulk Hogan’s daughter.

  • 800lb

    I watched a late season game where the Nuggets did the same thing to Deron Williams. They were constantly switching up the D and it took Williams out of commission.

  • Prison Mike

    Would like to see this on Kobe. Finally somewhat going through what Jordan did against the Bad Boys.

  • http://www.realcavsfans.com Anton

    JR Smith will grab his nuggets when he scores tonight.

  • http://basketball-reference.com nbk

    Its too bad David West has been so overrated. All of this shouldn’t be suprising.

  • JoeMaMa

    Unleash Mo Pete.

  • Big J

    nbk he’s playing against three great defensive players in the post Birdman,Kenyon and Nene that would give any team problems not just David West

  • http://basketball-reference.com nbk

    hmm i didn’t know those guys were so elite, i mean David West is supposed to be NO’s number 1 scoring option. Its laughable really to consider 3 guys on the same team elite defenders instead of just admitting 1 guy is overrated. whatever floats your boat

  • http://jakeandamir.com tealish

    nbk: I don’t know if West is “overrated” per se. He is definitely a weak no.1 option for any team, but his current status as fringe All-star/ All-Star snub sits about right in my opinion.

  • http://www.broy7.com nate the great

    the reason why they are so good so fast is because nene is healthy, kmart is healthy, they got birdman, and jr smith plays, and of course bills, and carmelo.
    they have a good team, its just hard to root for them.

  • http://www.triplejunearthed.com/dacre Dacre

    It certainly is hard to root for them…. Although getting home-town hero back certainly makes it easier for me. They are one uniform change away from making the NBA finals me thinks.

  • http://myspace.com/2grownup2beshownup Jack

    Tealish: I think that that fringe all-star/all-star snub is a pretty good position for him. Still, somewhere out there Melo is screaming… Lol. The dude should have at least 5 all-star games under his belt, he’s just hated on by the league so damn much.

  • chintao

    @ nate the great ==> If you have a minute, please take a seat on my couch. Why do you find the Nuggets hard to root for?

  • http://www.slamonline.com Blinguo

    Chemistry and depth of the Nuggets this year clicking on all cylinders overcome one guy with the three, doesn’t matter 1on1 “elite” defensive ability – its a defense by committee (with a ton of guys to get through and weakside helping to protect the rim all the time) ie Dahntay Jones stepping up with no fear to Chris Paul, if he was on the Hornets in a broken disjointed team, he would play as such and be a non factor at all.), and this “rating” you put on him. West had no backup at all and an iffy Chandler who is backed up by Marks who won’t even be given the time to be rated by NBA fans or even NBA.com

  • http://thenbarefsarecompletelyhorrible.com nbk

    David West doesn’t score at the rim.

  • http://thenbarefsarecompletelyhorrible.com nbk

    He shoots jump shots.

  • http://thenbarefsarecompletelyhorrible.com nbk

    Actually pump fake, pump fake, head fake, set shot fadeaway (did he jump?) shots.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Blinguo

    The 18 Foot Assassinated?