When I was covering a few of Pitt’s games earlier in the season, I noticed a familiar face at one of them. Before the game, I left my seat in press row to talk to this individual to confirm that it was him. Without saying any names, it just so happened to be a high ranking Denver Nuggets official.
We started talking and he asked who I wrote for. Once I told him about my site, I also told him that I was going to be covering the Nuggets for FanSided. The journalist in me had to ask him who he was here to see. Without giving me a direct answer, he said, “Oh I think you can take a guess.” While saying that to me, he looked right at the 7-foot New Zealand native Steven Adams.
Adams, who is a freshman at Pitt, is considered by many to be a possible one-and-done for Jamie Dixon’s Panthers. Adams didn’t perform well in the contest against Detroit as he only had two points and three rebounds in 12 minutes. Nevertheless, the interest is there from the Nuggets.
On the season, Adams is averaging 6.9 points, 6.3 rebounds and 1.7 blocks in 22 minutes per game for the Panthers. If Adams is able to improve his play during Big East play, then the Nuggets could take a chance on him in the upcoming NBA Draft.
The Nuggets currently have Timofey Mozgov (2.8 points, 3.1 rebounds), Kosta Koufos (7.7 points, 6.5 rebounds) and Javale McGee (10.6 points, 5.5 rebounds) anchoring the middle. While I’m in favor of McGee getting the majority of the minutes out of the trio, Coach George Karl has gone with Koufos.
Looking at the Nuggets lineup and barring a trade for DeMarcus Cousins or Anderson Varejao (the latter which would make rebounding against the Nuggets impossible), the center position is where they are vulnerable. While the 19-year-old Adams would be a project, you can’t teach height or athleticism – both which Adams has plenty of.
A couple years on the bench learning the position behind McGee would be beneficial for the Nuggets and Adams alike.