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Golden Nuggets mine first NBA championship for Denver

Things to do in Denver when you’re champions? Celebrate! Finals MVP Nikola Jokić, Canada’s Jamal Murray, and the most balanced team since the 2004 Detroit Pistons have just taken the Mile High City to the sky.

Golden Nuggets mine first NBA championship for Denver
Golden Nuggets mine first NBA championship for Denver

It hasn’t felt this good since the 1994 eight-seed Denver Nuggets shocked the top Seattle Sonics in the first round of the playoffs. Dikemebe Mutombo, all trademark smiles, holding the Spalding to the skies like it was Simba.

Now, the 2022-2023 Denver Nuggets are kings. After sweeping LeBron and the Lakers in the Western Conference Finals, no sleeper seed was going to give them a rude awakening.

We’re guessing Jimmy Butler should have touched that Eastern Conference Finals trophy just a little bit. It’s going to be a while before he gets to hold “the next one”.

Yet we should give respect where it’s due to Butler, big Bam Adebayo, the incredible run of Caleb Martin and the rest of ever underrated coach Erik Spoelstra’s hard-nosed Miami Heat team. Especially South Beach lifer and O.G. Udonis Haslem on his Wade like one last dance.

Especially in this day and age where we erase every other team the moment they lose. Whether it’s asking if previous champions are failures, or reducing legends to memes.

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Now we’ve offered our two cents, let’s give all the gold to those who deserve it. Your 2023 NBA Champions, the Denver Nuggets. The first chip in franchise history, dug out of the hardwood earth. The wild west hasn’t been this tough since the winners of NBA Finals shoot-outs wore Spurs on their sneakers.

Mere months ago, some fans were campaigning for Nikola Jokić NOT to win a third-straight regular season MVP award. Well, how about a Finals one and a championship ring to go along with his wedding one that he keeps tied to his sneaker shoelaces like a matrimony knot? His daughter drumming on the trophy.

Why so serious? The Joker is holding all the cards now. First center to win the Most Valuable Player award in the National Basketball Association Finals since Shaq in 2002. Having more than the reliable Canadian bear in Todd MacCulloch to go up against, too, with Bam, Bam.

The jokes on all those who slept on Nikola like a Taco Bell commercial when he was drafted later than those who wish they stayed a few more years in college. George, Wilt, Bill, Kareem, Shaq, Hakeem, Patrick, David and all the other Goliaths’. Nikola’s name belongs in the center of them all.

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Canadian’s have been taking over courts, especially during the last few years. Championships too. Now joining true Golden State Warrior Andrew Wiggins, Kitchener, Ontario’s very own Jamal Murray has overcome it all.

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Those who thought his Bubble play had burst. A potential career-ending injury. His own thoughts that he was “damaged goods”. Let alone all fickle fans who are quick to write someone off with a simple swipe.

Jamal Murray is now an NBA champion and one of the greatest comeback stories of all-time. A pure point and shooter, putting up legendary lines. Dropping points, rebounds and assists to go with few, if any, turnovers on the offensive end. The rest of the league may have two left hands, but the only one guaranteed to steal the ball on the break…is him.

“HIM”. That sounds perfect for Jamal Murray in a league where all stars are trying to give themselves that moniker. Presuming Murray isn’t one of the NBA’s elite is like believing Jokić doesn’t belong with the best of the best.

Think of all the Hollywood NBA names you grew up idolizing. Tracy McGrady. Vince Carter. Stephon Marbury. Jamal is right there. If not better. Rocking something on his finger, the others don’t.

Denver came close in Florida, and then it looked like that was their window. Especially when they let Jerami Grant go. Yet, coach Mike Malone was thinking of a master plan…and now he’s just painted his masterpiece. Recently retired Nuggets legend Carmelo Anthony congratulating them and his fellow number 15 (raise both) on Twitter.

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Haters will talk, and even those who offer the league’s new dynamic duo (best since Shaq and Kobe?) praise will do it whilst slighting the rest of this complete team. No stars apart from Jamal and The Joker? Are you kidding? These Nuggets are anything but chicken.

Just like the ’04 Pistons that championship crippled a Shaq, Kobe, Karl Malone and Gary Payton super team, Denver’s squad is full of big names making big sacrifices. Joining Murray and Jokić’s pool party, Michael Porter Jr. has always been that guy. Completing the 4-1 win over Miami with a Game 4 double-double of 16 points and 13 rebounds. His teammates chanting, “Mike, Mike, Mike” like those seagulls in ‘Finding Nemo’ (“mine, mine, mine”) as he was interviewed post-game.

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How about Aaron Gordon, too? You remember those early ‘Air Gordon’ dunking days in Orlando, Florida. Today, he is a more complete player, big blocker and stopper, putting the clamps on the opposition.

Now the Heat is off, you can thank him like air conditioning in the hard to breathe altitude of the Ball Arena. Just like you can, two-time champion Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, valuable vet journeyman Jeff Green and the coming of age and stage of Bruce Brown.

These Nuggets have stone-cut their way to the ‘chip. Now let’s pop bubbly like Nikola for the parade day reign.

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B(ring) it in.

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