In Dallas, they started calling the Denver Nuggets the "Thuggets.'' Maybe Mavericks' owner Mark Cuban helped start that nickname.
"I don't know where that comes from," Carmelo Anthony(notes) told the Denver Post. "I mean, we just play basketball. We play hard, we have fun out there on the court. Maybe it's because we've got tattoos. Everybody has tattoos on our team, so maybe that's what it is." . . .
The Post wrote: That's fine, calling the Nuggets names. Stuff happens in the playoffs. So long as the hoops world acknowledges the obvious: The Mavs are a good team, but they were no match for a Nuggets team on a once-a-quarter-century roll. . . .
But don't take my word for it. Roll tape on Mavs coach Rick Carlisle: "In the final analysis, Denver is a better team. . . . These guys are a legitimate, championship-caliber team. They've got a great shot." . . .