The excitement over the Iverson/Billups trade is off the charts in the Mile High City. The Nuggets, after all, are 5-1 since re-acquiring their native son. And no one is happier about this than the head coach.
Hearing George Karl talk about the ramifications of the swap, you’d almost be led to believe that a great weight has been lifted from his shoulders; that he’s finally free to demonstrate his coaching ingenuity to the world now that he’s been blessed with a “playmaker”.
From the Denver Post.
“I don’t think there’s any question coaching a team for many minutes, without a passing and point guard mentality, is frustrating for a coach. Sometimes I saw something, but I couldn’t get it done on the court because I didn’t have a playmaker out there.”
“A.I., at times, had trouble trusting the guy he’s throwing it to,” Karl said.
Karl even busts out his calculator to demonstrate Iverson’s inferiority at the point guard position (something about “contested-shot charts, bad-shot charts and cheap defensive possessions”).
Of course, there’s no mention of Karl’s failure to properly utilize Allen alongside Melo, the team’s overall inability to play a lick of defense over the last couple of years, or the fact that their recent success has come largely against sub .500 teams.
The “Answer” when Denver bows out of the Playoffs early yet again next spring? Iverson’s fault, naturally.