The Denver Nuggets were another team that had plenty of injuries last year. They changed coaches, Brian Shaw replaced George Karl. Danilo Gallinari missed the entire season. JaVale McGee only played in five games, Nate Robinson tore his ACL, J.J. Hickson had ACL surgery and even Ty Lawson missed some time. With all those injuries the Nuggets still scored the basketball at a high rate, they were 9th in scoring but 28th in points allowed. Even with all the injuries and a new coach they went 36-46.
Ty Lawson continued to improve averaging career highs in points and assists while shooting 35% from beyond the arc. Kenneth Faried had another solid as well. Energy and effort led to 13.7 ppg and 8.6 rpg. Wilson Chandler continued to battle injuries but he did shoot the three ball well, hitting a career high 122 three pointers. Randy Foye was also a solid player who started the most games for the Nuggets shooting 38% from the field.
J.J. Hickson and Timofey Mozgov played center throughout the year since McGee missed most of the season. Hickson was having a decent year offensively until he got hurt. Mozgov was more of the defensive center when he was in the lineup. With so many injuries the Nuggets could never find the right lineups to put together a good winning streak.
The Nuggets swapped picks with Chicago and got Jusuf Nurki and Gary Harris. Harris will be a good addition to the backcourt. He has some size and he can shoot the ball really well. Nurkic is a young big man who might not see much playing time.
Danilo Gallinari will be making his return to the Nuggets this season after missing last year. He was sorely missed because he is another player that can create off the dribble. He’s 6-10 so he can play either forward position if the Nuggets decide to go small. Arron Afflalo is back in Denver after having a career season with the Orlando Magic. He will be the perimeter defender they need. He’s a leader and he can hit open shots.
We make fun of JaVale McGee but he does some things well while he’s on the court. The Nuggets will need him if they want to be a better defensive team. He’s a good help defender who can protect the rim.
Kenneth Faried’s time with team USA will help him going forward. He helped them win a gold medal and he made the All-Tournament team. His game still needs some polishing but he will be really good this season. The World Cup gave him a lot of confidence and that will help him lead this team.
The Nuggets have depth at every position. They will score at a high rate but they have to put together some defensive stops for stretches to become a playoff team. I like this roster because they can run and the addition of Gallinari, Afflalo, and Harris make them a better three point shooting team. Winning 36 games was good with an injured team. They can win 45-48 games.