I’m a stalker. As hard as that is to admit, it’s true. Here’s the facts of it… I’ve been stalking DNVR/BSN for a few years now, and it’s time I placed the blame. I’d like to accept responsibility, but honestly… it’s 100% Harrison Wind’s fault. Spending the last several years at a cross-town competitor, you tend to pay attention to the folks who are covering the same spaces as you, and Harrison was the guy who always brought a perspective I loved. Who always wrote something I wished I’d said. I plunked my money down just to be sure I could keep on top of what Mr. Wind had to say about the Denver Nuggets. Frankly, I repeatedly begged my former bosses to find a way to poach him. Instead, I ended up gravitating the other way. Either way, we finally get to share a page. I don’t know if I should apologize to Harrison or not. The longer I’ve been reading here, the more voices I’ve come to admire. It’s an exciting time to be a part of this DNVR team.

 

Even so, maybe not quite as exciting as it would be to be a part of the 2019-20 Denver Nuggets, who enter this season as a League Pass darling, one of the league’s toughest “outs”, and as a fashionable preseason pick to finally get to their first NBA Finals. My hands tremble a little just typing that outttt. Typing that outtt. See?

 

Six years ago, we Nuggets fans had to be wondering when the team might ever see the playoffs again, let alone be back in the league’s upper echelons. But what a difference those few years have made. Those of us long-timers who actually spent money on tickets to witness an 11-71 Nuggets season are still waiting to see if we’re about to wake up from a reallllly good dream. And are still a little pissed off about 11-71.

 

That story… Denver being one of the few NBA teams who have NEVER made an NBA Finals, makes your favorite basketball team one of the most compelling and engaging stories of this upcoming season. These Nuggets are just different. They have zigged (roster consistency) when everyone else has zagged (blowing it up). Denver has built that roster around a giver (Jokic, zig) when most everyone else is building around an alpha (zag). While the Nuggets have high expectations for this season, they have built their roster from the ground up and waited on maturation (zig) while every other Western Conference team pushes all of their chips to the middle of the table this season or next (zag).

 

Will it work? Time will tell, but the NBA is a league of copycats. Teams follow the models that got someone else wins. Interestingly, Denver has built something that will be pretty tough to emulate, let alone replicate. How do you rebuild this? Throw a unicorn in the middle, with a hand-picked set of complimentary pieces that have had a number of seasons to gel, grow, and meld. If this were a recipe, you’d need to let it bake for several seasons just to see if you could get the same flavor. So savor that taste for a moment, if you’re a Nuggets fan. Something very tasty looks to be coming this year.

 

How compelling is it? Well, for this Nuggets fan, I finally ponied up for the “You Want How Much?” package for League Pass this season, strictly to get a chance to check out their VR capabilities, and finally finally FINALLY get those courtside seats I’ve always dreamt of. Maybe my courtside seats come with a head visor that makes me look like a pretend superhero, but… at least my nachos are cheaper, and the bathroom is far far cleaner. No… really. It really is cleaner.

 

It’s starting again, Nuggets Nation, and this time Denver brings in one of the league’s finest teams with one of the most unique rosters of players and friends around. If you’re a Nuggets fan, anticipation is a mile high, as almost any outcome seems believable. The stakes are as elevated as they have been in years. Buckle up for a fun and exciting year, and revel in a moment Nuggets fans have been waiting on for a long time. After years of waiting their turn, the time has arrived, the team has arrived, and should be in this conversation for several seasons to come. Come along for a new beginning, friends. This could be the year Denver’s basketball team finally finds themselves at the summit. How excited are YOU about this Nuggets campaign?

Author

Mike Olson is a weekly columnist for DNVR. The Colorado State University alum was born and raised in Fort Collins and has been writing about Denver sports for the last eight years. He currently resides in Los Angeles where he has an unhealthy addiction to In-n-Out Burgers and a healthy aversion to the Lakers.

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