Raymond Felton gives Ty Lawson run for his money in Nuggets win over Atlanta Hawks

Who'da thunk the Nuggets would be playing so well following the Carmelo Anthony trade? And each night, it seems as if another new Nug steps up.

Against the Boston Celtics, Wilson Chandler shone -- and in last night's 100-90 victory over the Atlanta Hawks, Raymond Felton demonstrated his value in a big way.

As the Denver Post notes, Felton had been only five for twenty since slipping on a Denver uni prior to last night. But with Ty Lawson ailing due to a case of the flu, Felton racked up sixteen points and seven assists. During his time on the floor, he was an impressive plus-eighteen -- far and away the most efficient performer from either team.

In the immediate aftermath of the Nugs acquiring the ex-New York Knicks foursome, rumors were rife that Felton would be dealt, since he and Lawson bring similar skills to the training table. Obviously, that hasn't happened yet, and versus the Hawks, Felton made a strong case for him sticking around. Not only does he provide the sort of depth every NBA team covets, but he ensures that the Nuggets' pace doesn't flag when the second unit enters the game.

The key for George Karl is keeping Felton happy even as he makes it clear that Lawson's the point guard of the future. If Ty spends all his time worrying about playing time and looking over his shoulder, he won't develop as quickly as the Nugs need him to in order to ball at a high level. But if both Lawson and Felton can coexist, the results could turn out to be as positive over the long haul as they were last night.

More from our Sports archive: "Wilson Chandler tattoo photos: Chris 'Birdman' Andersen will love new Nuggets teammate's ink."

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