The Denver Nuggets may experience their first NBA Finals this year. Along with the Memphis Grizzlies, they are the most stable team in the West, where ups and downs abound. Denver Nuggets’ hospitable attitude continues this year as well. The team with the most wins at home, 22-4. The Nuggets will make the most of it in the playoffs if they top the league and take the field advantage.
Denver’s most important weapon is Nikola Jokic, MVP of the last two years. The Serbian center is running for the MVP award for the third time with 25.1 points, 11 rebounds, 9.9 assists and 63% shooting. Its stability is as eye-catching as its numbers. There is hardly a game he played badly. Moreover, this stability has continued for the last few years.
I don’t think Jokic has been given enough credit. I think he’s a game-changing basketball player. We can count dozens of pivots with passing ability. But there is no one who can play like him. It leaves the opposing defenses helpless. He beats it up, attacks the painted area and finishes it. When you bring in double compression, it doesn’t take seconds to find your free friend. There is no limit to his offensive ability. He has been an inspiration to young people like our son Alperen Şengün. In the future, we will hear the definition of “point pivot” more often and we will always refer to it with Jokic.
Calvin Booth, the new GM of the Denver Nuggets, did well during the transfer window. He added two valuable defensive and penalty shooter shorts like Bruce Brown and Kentavious Caldwell Pope. Along with Aaron Gordon, they pushed the Nuggets defense to 15th place. I expect them to be better on defense.
Returning from injury, Jamal Murray and Michael Porter JR are slowly finding rhythm. Porter suffered a brief injury. Murray, on the other hand, is in good health and supports Jokic as the team’s second scorer.
Set your friends raising
I can say that Aaron Gordon is having his career season this year. Very good in defense as we are used to. On offense, he reached the highest figure in the last six years. Playing with Jokic felt good to him. Besides being a bad decision maker, Gordon, who had a lot of weapons in both sides of the game, started to play much more efficiently when he did not have to produce individual scores with the help of Jokic’s passes.
Bones Hyland is an important weapon with score generation from the bench. Despite his weak physique and selfish play, he is a problem solver. This year, he has improved both his three pointers and his percentage. He is ineffective on defense but gets support from rookie Christian Braun. Braun is like an atomic ant revealing all that he has. Very poor on offense. If it improves on that, it will be a valuable piece. His style reminds me of Alex Caruso. Not as athletic as him, but as daring as he is.
One of the league’s most assisted teams, Denver’s most obvious shortcoming is the lack of alternatives in numbers 4 and 5. The most trusted name is Jeff Green. His age and disability history are alarming. Other bigs De Andre Jordan, Zeke Nnaji and Vlatko Cancar are not enough for the playoffs.
Murray ve Porter support must be
The Denver Nuggets have strengthened as a team with role players aligned with Jokic. In previous years, such wide and harmonious rotation players did not exist. The performance of Jamal Murray and Michael Porter Jr will be decisive for the Nuggets. The contribution of Jokic and the rotation players is more or less obvious. If Jamal Murray and Michael Porter JR do their part in the playoffs, it wouldn’t come as a surprise that they’d all take Denver to the NBA Finals for the first time.
Turner persuasion it happened
The Indiana Pacers, which made the restructuring without resetting the team and the process was fast, convinced Myles Turner to extend his contract for two years. I think this move is the right one. Myles was much more effective in the fast game. Developed offensively. He began to gravitate towards more painted areas. It doesn’t finish bad either. Three points and the hoop added a new addition to the defense. The Pacers added 18 million of the $60 million it will pay Turner to this year’s salary, making room for the next two years’ salary cap. The Pacers will pay 35 instead of 17 this year and $21 million for the other two seasons. Making the payment like this is financially rational. Extending two years with Myles, who has a long history of injury, is a precaution against the risk of injury. At the start of the season, the Pacers sacrificed Turner and signed De Andre Ayton to a four-year, $120 million contract. Considering Turner’s exit and Ayton’s lack of contact, it has been a great favor to Indiana that Phoenix didn’t leave Ayton by meeting the contract.