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Welcome back, Nuggets. Something to cheer for again

Finally, some great news. Our NBA-title-defending Nuggets tipped off the basketball season on Tuesday with a 119 to 107 win over the Los Angeles Lakers. Before the game, NBA hoopla included the raising of the championship banner, plus the highly anticipated ring ceremony.

No basketball team anywhere is better, or more entertaining, than our NBA Champion Denver Nuggets. In total, the Nuggets will have nine games this regular season on TNT, nine on ESPN and four on ABC.

We need our Nuggets and the NBA, now more than ever. Downtown Denver’s too-often depressing. Really hard news from our dysfunctional Washington, D.C., and around the globe, saddens and frightens.

The Broncos are disappointing and dull, even when they squeak out a win. Six decades of Silverman NFL season tickets ended several years back. On TV, I can record and watch the tedious, injury-plagued games super fast.

So sad was this past Rockies’ season that I went zero for 81 in attendance. Since their blessed birth, I’ve attended on average 10 to 15 games a year, but not anymore. If a Colorado team won’t try hard, neither will I.

The Nuggets don’t aspire for mediocrity. They fully aim to repeat their NBA championship. Vital to their title defense is Jamal Murray. The Nuggets might have won prior championships if the premier shooting guard hadn’t demolished his left knee at Oracle Arena on April 12, 2021.

But that’s when the charismatic Canadian’s story gets great. Through strong parenting, hard work and amazing athleticism, the Blue Arrow’s back, better than ever.

Quick and fierce like a wildcat, Murray is a fan favorite. It’s not taunting in the NBA to fire off imaginary arrows following massive Murray flurries. Great shooters carry a certain swagger. When Jamal smiles, Nuggets’ Nation lights up.

The Blue Arrow has fresh new athletic shoes, his Jamal Murray New Balance Two WXY v4, and he takes pride in the design. Mal doesn’t even own a car, but he sure can drive spectacularly to the rim. Number 27 gets around Denver just fine.

Expect Murray to be an all-star this year and, as a result, earn a Super-Max contract like his big pal, the Nuggets’ all-time best player, Nikola Jokić. Whatever Murray is paid will be well deserved for a clutch 16-game player who craves the playoffs to show his best.

Native Serbian Jokić and his family are well-settled in Denver now. Featured in every aspect of the Nuggets’ celebration, darling daughter Ognjena Jokić, must be telling her father she wants another ring. So do all Nuggets fans. We are greedy.

Nuggets will win the NBA championship again. Back to back, baby!

The Nuggets’ competitive head coach Michael Malone raised his family, and this fabulous team, in Denver. Malone’s father, legendary NBA Coach Brendan Malone, died Oct. 10, at age 81. I expect Michael Malone’s wise and loving father knew the truth of my next sentence. If healthy, the Nuggets are going to repeat as NBA champions.

Teamwork made the Nuggets dream work, and we’ve got the winning band back together, featuring the best basketball player in the world.

Our Joker is in his prime and he’s complemented perfectly by his teammates. Even though the Nuggets lost sixth man Bruce Brown, who was superb in the playoffs – and at the parade – the second team is vastly improved.

Huge advances are expected from Christian Braun, Peyton Watson and recently well-rewarded rebounding machine Zeke Nnaji.

Colorado’s own Reggie Jackson will be a strong veteran presence, as will Justin Holiday and Deandre Jordan, which is excellent for the three promising (and experienced) NBA rookies on the roster. Keep your eyes on swaggering rookie shooter Julian Strawther who doesn’t look like a rookie.

The Nuggets are the best team in basketball and one heck of a great diversion. Last season was so much fun. Let’s do it again.

Craig Silverman is a former Denver chief deputy DA and a columnist for The Colorado Sun, a nonpartisan news organization based in Denver.