The Denver Nuggets had a lot of positives come out of out their loss to the New Orleans Pelicans. There is just one scrimmage game left for the Nuggets.
The Denver Nuggets again went very tall in their starting lineup, just not quite as gargantuan as they were in the first game. The Nuggets started Nikola Jokic, Mason Plumlee, Jerami Grant, Bol Bol, and Torrey Craig against the Pelicans.
New Orleans got off to a hot start offensively, canning 13 points inside the first three minutes. The Nuggets ended up giving away 33 points in the first quarter, and 66 for the entire first half. Given their enormous lineup, it may be time to phase in more of the athletic wing types to balance out the floor a bit more as the team continues to experiment with lineup combinations.
Troy Daniels had a huge night, drilling 7-10 three pointers which accounted for most of his 28 points. Bol Bol had another strong showing, putting up 15 points including another two swished three pointers. Noah Vonleh played 30 minutes and struggled, shooting 2-7 from the field.
While 104 points is hardly anything to be discouraged about in a scrimmage game, the Nuggets had six of their eight available players post a negative plus/minus rating. Jerami Grant had a particularly miserable showing, posting a whopping -27. Even Daniels, who was at times unconscious from behind the line, came out to -11.
Jokic and Bol were the only Nuggets to post a positive plus/minus rating. Clearly, Michael Malone and his staff are becoming more and more desperate from wing and guard depth, making the ascension of P.J. Dozier crucial to the team’s success. To this point, there has hardly been any sign of any lingering fatigue from Jokic, who only very recently battled the coronavirus, as did Malone.
The Nuggets will next play the Orlando Magic on Monday night.