Michael Malone had gotten used to the humdrum. The offices the Nuggets’ coaching staff inhabit are just down the hall from the team’s locker room. Last season, Malone’s crew didn’t have much noise to contend with as they planned a practice or strategized for a game.

“Maybe some music,” Malone said. “But you didn’t ever hear chatter.”

But last week, Malone noticed a shift. Malone heard shouting instead of the faint thumping of a bass. He walked into the Nuggets’ locker room to investigate. As he suspected, Isaiah Thomas was inside egging teammates on.

“Every day last week there was a full on argument where I had to see what was going on,” Malone said. “Right in the middle of it was Isaiah Thomas. They were talking about Magic Johnson, what kind of impact he’d have on today’s game? Klay Thompson, would he be a big-time scorer if he wasn’t on Golden State?”

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Christian Clark

Christian Clark is an Arlington, Texas, native who covers the Denver Nuggets for BSN Denver. Education: I graduated from the Missouri School of Journalism in December 2014 with an emphasis in print and digital news. Career: My work has been featured in the Fort Worth-Star Telegram, The Oklahoman and Columbia Missourian, and online at TexasFootball.com and Denverite.com. I came aboard at BSN Denver in November 2017. Most memorable sports moment: Game 2 of the 2011 NBA Finals. The finest sports book I’ve ever read: Friday Night Lights by Buzz Bissinger. One sports movie I can’t live without: Tin Cup, do not @ me Most memorable experience as a reporter: The quadruple-OT game between the Nuggets and Trail Blazers. The sport that started it all: Basketball. My sports-watching memories kick in with those early-2000s Dallas Mavericks teams. They had bad hair and scored a lot of points. Shout-out to Nellie Ball.