As it would for any coach, the memory of a Game 7 loss in the Western Conference playoffs lingered for George Karl.

On his 61st birthday, the Denver Nuggets were in position to pull off one of the greatest postseason comebacks of all time, leading the Los Angeles Lakers by four points with 10:44 to play.

The Lakers eventually rallied to avoid an upset at the hands of the sixth-seeded Nuggets, who fell just a few minutes short of becoming the ninth team in NBA history to overcome a 3-1 series deficit.

With the 2011-12 season in the books and 2012-13 approaching, Nuggets.com is taking a closer at the team’s primary rotation players and how they fared during a challenging 66-game schedule. Denver assistant coach Melvin Hunt was kind enough to provide candid assessments, which reflect the views of the Nuggets coaching staff as a whole.

Today’s featured player is Jordan Hamilton, a first-round draft pick who went through the usual highs and lows experienced by NBA rookies.

The 2012 Timo World Tour was in full swing this summer, making stops in Caracas, London and Moscow before returning to Denver.

In the end, it was immortalized in bronze.

Denver Nuggets center Timofey Mozgov returned to Pepsi Center this week after a productive three months highlighted by an Olympic bronze medal performance and the first Basketball Without Borders event in his native Russia.

“It was a busy summer,” Mozgov said. “A good busy summer.”

An autographed jersey hangs on the bedroom wall, along with a poster-sized picture of McKaila Steffes’ favorite Nuggets player.

Included in the collection are smaller photographs and dozens of newspaper clippings – compete with box scores – that McKaila and her brother Wyatt carefully cut out during the 2005-06 NBA season.

Earl Watson spent less than five months playing for the Nuggets, but his legacy in the Steffes household will last a lifetime.

With the 2011-12 season in the books and 2012-13 approaching, Nuggets.com is taking a closer at the team’s primary rotation players and how they fared during a challenging 66-game schedule. Denver assistant coach Melvin Hunt was kind enough to provide candid assessments, which reflect the views of the Nuggets coaching staff as a whole.

Today’s featured player is Kosta Koufos, a young center who made an impact for the Nuggets while sharing time with fellow 7-footers JaVale McGee and Timofey Mozgov last season.

Envelopes both big and small are stacked precipitously on a filing cabinet in Masai Ujiri’s office at Pepsi Center.

His virtual inbox is equally stuffed with follow-up correspondence from people he met during the latest Basketball Without Borders Africa camp in Johannesburg, South Africa.

“I’ve got piles and piles of mail and e-mails I have to return,” Ujiri says. “But I love it. It shows that there is an impact we’re having over there.”

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