In an effort to get burn off those Christmas calories, Brian Shaw put the Denver Nuggets through a lengthy practice Thursday before they head out of town.
Coming off a two-day break and on a four-game losing streak, the Nuggets coach had the players on the floor for more than two and a half hours Thursday before they flew out for Friday's game in New Orleans.
"I don't even know in all my years having two days in a row off," said Shaw, who played 15 seasons in the league and has coached since retiring in 2003. " Just coming out and blowing out some of the Christmas dinner that the guys had eaten.
"Over the two days I got to think a lot about where we are as a team, and one of the things I think we need to do is get back to the basics and back to the fundamentals. So, we spent a lot of time in offensive review just doing the simple stuff."
Denver lost Monday at home 89-81 to Golden State, which eliminated them from the playoffs in the first round in April. The Nuggets have lost five of their past six games, and in that stretch have averaged just 93.2 points per game.
"We scored 81 points the other night, and that's not enough to win," Shaw said. "We held the other team to 89 points, and you think if that happens we would win the game, but offensively we're doing everything too slow."
The schedule remains tight with games Friday against the Pelicans then Saturday at Memphis before the NBA champion Miami Heat play at Pepsi Center on Monday. Denver will play five games in eight days.
Forward Kenneth Faried, who sprained his ankle Saturday at the Clippers and didn't play Monday, practices most session Thursday, but Shaw said Faried was "winching a little bit at times" and his status for Friday remains uncertain.
"I think (the break) does help in the sense that we were on a bad stretch going into Christmas," Shaw said. "So to get away from everybody and not think about basketball at all - just kind of recharge and refresh is like a mini-All-Star break. I go into it saying, 'Well, it can't get much worse. We can only go up from here.' So hopefully that's what will happen. We had a good, good crisp practice today."
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