Jamal Murray out vs. Heat

The Denver Nuggets will be without Jamal Murray in their first game in the bubble.

With tip-off just minutes away, the Denver Nuggets will not have Jamal Murray available to them against the Miami Heat in their first game in the NBA bubble in Orlando. The Nuggets could then be forced to use more of their big men in the lineup as they did throughout the scrimmage campaign.

Murray was not a sure thing leading up to the game, and is now officially out as he is still recovering from hamstring tightness. The Nuggets have plenty of experience playing without him, and are prepared to do so after coach Michael Malone and his staff trotted out the now infamous “mile high lineup” featuring five different players all 6”8 or taller.

The Nuggets, however, are going to have a tough test on their hands when they face a team with a number of strong perimeter players who can all shoot from long range. Duncan Robinson, Tyler Herro, and Goran Dragic are all going to be difficult assignments for the Nuggets without their best guard.

The Nuggets will again have to point to Troy Daniels, who was possibly the best performing Nugget during the scrimmage season. All signs point to Murray being able to play every soon, but the Nuggets clearly want to be cautious.

The team’s first game is a significant one, as the standings have already shifted around somewhat. The Houston Rockets defeated the Dallas Mavericks in a ridiculously high scoring overtime game to push them upward, while the Los Angeles Clippers slipped further behind the Lakers and and closer to the Nuggets.

The Nuggets have themselves a chance to vault towards the top of the standings with a win against a tough opponent in the Heat, and will get their first chance to win without Murray on Saturday.