NBA 2018 Offseason Breakdown: Denver Nuggets

Back again for the Offseason Breakdown blog, now onto the Denver Nuggets. I’ll write about what the Nuggets did in the offseason, the teams starting 5, strengths and weaknesses, and how I think the Nuggets will do this season. Let’s start.

Offseason Acquisitions and Loses:
Nikola Jokic signs a 5 year $147 million extension
Of course this is the right move for the Nuggets as Jokic is the player the Nuggets are running their team around.
Nuggets draft Micheal Porter Jr. with the #14 pick 
As the draft went on this year, we kept seeing Michael Porter fall and fall due to his back injury. But I really like the Nuggets picking Porter. Porter has all the potential in the world to be a star, so why not risk the chances of picking Porter, and I think Porter will be fine. 
Isaiah Thomas signs a 1 year $2 million contract
What a signing for the Nuggets. Thomas is still a top 15 point guard in the NBA, so the fact that you can sign him to a $2 million dollar contract is great. Now Thomas will probably serve as the 6th man now because Jamal Murray was the primary point guard last season for the Nuggets.
Nets trade Isiah Whitehead to Denver for Kenneth Faried, Darrell Arthur, a protected 2019 1st round pick, and a 2020 2nd round pick 
I don’t know how I feel about this trade because the Nuggets needed to get rid of Faried in order to sign Jokic, but giving up a first round pick for a team to take him is a little bit too much. I think the Nuggets could’ve traded him to a contender and not have to give up a 1st rounder.
Nuggets trade Wilson Chandler and a future 2nd round pick to the 76ers for cash
Weird trade, but the Nuggets need to get rid of players like Faried and Chandler because of there huge contracts.

Starting 5: 
PG: Jamal Murray
SG: Gary Harris
SF: Torrey Craig
PF: Paul Millsap
C: Nikola Jokic

Now the Nuggets look like a really good team this season. The Nuggets have 6 players on their roster, 2 on the bench, and that’s a lot. The Nuggets are going to be a really good scoring team and I can see their point differential this season being really close when they lose games. And I said it before, but Jokic is the star of this team. Jokic averaged 18.5 PPG, 10.7 RBG, 6.1 APG, shot 49% from the field and 39% from the field. Unreal stats for a center.

Denver’s main problem last season was their defense. Denver ranked 22nd in opponents PPG at 108.5 and rankes last in opponets field goal percentage at 48%. Denver needs to play much better defense if they want to make the playoffs this season.

Offseason Grade: B+

Prediction: On paper the Nuggets look like a very good team, but they are in the western conference. But they will still make the playoffs with the 8th seed this season. I originally thought the Nuggets wouldn’t make the playoffs, but with Jimmy Butler potentially being traded, I have them taking their spot.

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