Vegas Over/Under: 45.5
Fromal’s Record Projection: 48 The Bet: Above with confidence
When Nikola Jokic re-entered the starting lineup on December 15, everything clicked.
From there forward, the Denver Nuggets submitted the league’s best offensive rating (113.3). And though they had been unusually porous (league-worst 111.9 defensive rating), they nevertheless outscored their foes and claimed themselves as a valid danger to make the playoffs.
Now, they’re better–with a lot.
Paul Millsap is the perfect fit next to Jokic, gracing the Nuggets with his defensive acumen and versatile offensive play. He gives the Mile High City another top-25 participant, and his presence instantly creates one of the NBA’s most reckless frontcourt pairings.
How will opponents handle departure coming from so many distinct places in 2017-18? How will they counteract the offensive excellence every time a legitimate defensive stalwart is making Jokic’s life simpler?
Along with the frontcourt isn’t the sole reason for unmitigated optimism.
Gary Harris enjoys tremendous synergy with Jokic and is coming off a breakout season. He should continue emerging as among the Association’s better 2-guards, and he is joined by yet another high-upside backcourt member in Jamal Murray.
Losing Danilo Gallinari hurts, and the Nuggets largely failed to consolidate their assets. But this really is a deep team overflowing with talent in many different positions.