The dead of the offseason is in full swing, the draft is done, major free agents have all signed and outside of a disgruntled Kyrie Irving, the trade market is wholly uninteresting. With plenty of time to pontificate, the Stiffs got thinking about rivalries. Who is the Denver Nuggets rival? How do we define and rank rivalry and once we do, will anyone truly be able to be called a rival of the Nuggets? The slow period gives us time to answer these questions so in the words of Daenerys Targaryen: shall we begin?The methodology is loose, to be kind. Mostly its based off of feel. However, there were certain things to take into consideration: teams with former Nuggets players (especially ones who were disgruntled while in Denver), teams who have routinely beat the Nuggets (especially in the playoffs), teams who play in the same conference, teams who play in the same division, and to some degree, teams who have upper echelon talent. Again though, there’s not a lot of hard science here. Rivalries are about emotion and passion, which makes them difficult to quantify but also helps determine where emphasis should be placed. Losing a playoff series is demoralizing for a team and its fans and that breeds hatred of the team that bested them. Losing a player to free agency, or worse having a player force his way out, also tends to stir up emotions of anger and finally a player being spurned by his former team is never a good thing so those three factors played the biggest role in making this list. There is almost nothing to make a rival out of this group. All are nowhere near competing, all are in the Eastern Conference and all have virtually no significant history with the Nuggets. You’re really grasping at straws here. The best arguments for having a rivalry with any of these teams would be Dwyane Wade choosing the Bulls over Denver last year, Brooklyn beating the Nuggets twice in a season on buzzer beaters from Joe Johnson and the Pacers backing out of a deal that would have landed the Nuggets Kevin Love. There’s A LOT of talent in this group, whether that be the Celtics whose Finals appearance chances get better with Irving’s malcontent, or the 76ers who are rising from the ashes but come loaded with young players with extremely high ceilings. Every team on this list has guys who profile as future stars in the league, and many already have ascended to that status. However, outside of the Pelicans they are all Eastern Conference teams meaning a true rivalry would likely have to be born from a finals matchup with one of them and outside of Boston (and including the Nuggets), none of these teams strike you as a finals contender in the near future (maybe Washington, but cheap nba jerseys authentic that’s a stretch). The Pelicans have been such a non-factor that there isn’t much of a rivalry now, but with both them and the Nuggets expected to battle for the final playoff spots in the West, this rivalry could get a lot more heated very quickly.