Tuesday December 5, 2023

The Nuggets’ Big Three Could Reunite for Playoff Run

  • Michael Porter Jr. (back) and Jamal Murray (knee) could return from injury soon.
  • Reigning MVP Nikola Jokic is leading the NBA in triple-doubles this season.
Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports/Design: John Regula
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Sunday’s 124-92 dismantling of the Trail Blazers was the Nuggets’ sixth win in a row and eighth in their last nine, tying them on record with the 5-seed Mavericks.

Now, forward Michael Porter Jr. (back) and guard Jamal Murray (knee) could both return for the playoffs, per The Athletic, with the former potentially back in mid-to-late-March.

Reigning MVP Nikola Jokic has kept this team competitive more than halfway through the season in what could be their last chance for a title before their Big Three becomes more expensive.

  • The Nuggets are currently the 11th-favorite (+3500*) to win the Finals.
  • Jokic, Porter, and Murray add a combined $66.3 million against the cap this season.
  • Next season — when Jokic gets a pay bump and Porter’s rookie extension kicks in — that number rises to $95 million.

Jokic is leading the NBA in triple-doubles this season — he’s five away from tying Wilt Chamberlain for most all-time by a center.

Porter had a breakout sophomore campaign in 2020-21 (19.0 PTS, 44.5 3PT%), while Murray tied or set career highs before tearing his ACL last season (21.2 PTS, 4.8 AST, 1.3 STL, 47.7 FG%, 40.8 3PT%).

The Nuggets are sleeping giants in the West — and they could be a legit title contender with the return of their two stars.

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