It’s officially NBA season!
Instead of rehashing the disgusting Broncos loss to the Raiders on Sunday, I want to focus on something I can actually look forward to:
The Denver Nuggets.
It feels like it’s been like this for a few years now. Hoping beyond sanity that the Broncos will turn it around and look like a different team this year, and then by Week 6 completely giving up on the dumpster fire of a season. But not to fear Denver fans, we have a savior, and his name is Nikola Jokic.
The Joker provides Denver with something the Broncos have lacked for years: A generational talent.
Jokic is 1 of 1. There has literally never been anyone in the NBA like him, and I doubt there ever will be again. He’s like a combo of Larry Bird, Pete Maravich, and Kevin McHale all in their primes.
White guy comparison’s aside, the man is just plain fun to watch. Having the best player on the team also be the most unselfish is unheard of in the NBA. The culture of the Nuggets and how they play is a direct result of the way Jokic carries himself on and off the floor, and I couldn’t be happier about that fact.
He’s also an absolute Gif machine:
I love him.
Am I IN love with him?
Tough to say, but I wouldn’t bet against it.
You know who else I have a massive man crush on? The Nuggets prize rookie, Bones Hyland. The front office has had an incredible track record of drafting unheralded guys, and this year is no different. Not only does Bones have endless amounts of skill, he also seems like a genuinely awesome person. If you haven’t fallen down the Bones Hyland YouTube rabbit hole yet, I don’t know what you’re doing.
Here’s a little taste of what kind of guy he is:
I love his personality and he should provide a bolt of energy into this team from the jump.
Outside of that, this kid is SKILLED on the offensive end. His range is unlimited. His passing is beyond his years. He already has some of the best handles on the team. Don’t believe me? Let’s see what the Nuggets have to say:
I love what he was doing in summer league and the preseason. It’s rare to see a kid this young with this much confidence.
His body type reminds me a lot of Rajon Rondo, which makes his defensive ceiling very promising. But his scoring and playmaking ability is already gonna be a problem for defenders.
If fact, Bones has impressed so much in training camp, even coach Malone has basically admitted he’ll be a part of the rotation this year.
For Michael Malone to be saying these things is borderline astonishing. This is a man who refuses to play young guys extended minutes, let alone rookies.
I wholeheartedly believe this year’s draft will go down as one of the all time greatest. There was so much talent all across the board. With that being said, the rest of the league letting Bones drop to the Nuggets at pick 26 was a mistake. He’s gonna be a contributor from day one.
Outside of Bones, what am I most excited about for this year’s Nuggets team? It has to be Michael Porter Jr.
With Jamal Murray out (definitely until after the All Star Break, probably a bit longer than that), MPJ needs to step up for the Nuggets in a big way. And I think he’s fully capable. This man just had one of the most efficient shooting seasons of all time.
He’s already an elite shooter in the NBA. He’s also 6’10” and only 23 years old…Suffice it to say, MPJ’s ceiling as a scorer is astronomical. Like all-time NBA great astronomical. He’s no joke, and I’m giddy about what he can do as the #2 in our offense with Murray out. I wouldn’t be surprised to see an All-Star appearance from MPJ this year. He’s that good.
Now obviously his defense needs some work, but that will come with time. I don’t think his defensive ceiling is that great, although I do think he can be a capable defender if he really wants to. His flexibility and lateral movement are an issue, hence why I don’t think he’ll ever be a great defender, but with his size, length, and athleticism, he’s more than capable of being a net positive on that side of the court. We just need to see some consistent effort from him on that end.
Speaking of consistent effort, I’m gonna transition to the Nuggets ultimate wild card: Bol Bol.
Imagine if Bol had Bones’ enthusiasm for the game? He’d be an unstoppable force like we’ve never seen before. To his credit, Bol is something I’ve never seen before. A true unicorn. 7 foot whatever, with handles and a smooth 3 point stroke. But with Bol, it’s always the same thing. Over the past couple of years, every time he’s gotten in the game, I say the same thing over and over again.
Like I’m a parent trying to encourage my 5 year old kid. Instead, I’m a childless man shouting obscenities at my TV.
But so far in preseason, Bol has shown some spark that we haven’t seen in the past. Almost as if….he cares? I know it’s crazy thinking, but I can’t help think of the possibilities…
Like ya know how Anthony Davis is frustratingly unguardable? Like if he’s healthy, there’s literally nothing that can be done to stop him? You know who the one man in the entire universe who could potentially give him problems is? Bol Bol.
He’s the ultimate wild card in my opinion. Someone that may not see the floor at all this year, but also someone that may make an enormous impact if he actually gave a shit once in a while. A boy can dream can’t he?
Anyways, this has gone on long enough. I am bound to have future opinions about this Nuggets team that I can’t wait to write about. Aaron Gordon being our LeBron stopper, PJ Dozier being our Swiss army knife, and Facu being our pest. The potentially enormous impact of Jeff Green, Will Barton pissing me off, and Austin Rivers doing the same.
And the return of the heart and soul of this team:
Jamal Motherfuckin Murray.
Hop on, this will be a fun ride.