The 2021-22 season ended sooner than the Denver Nuggets would’ve hoped, losing in five games to the Golden State Warriors. There is a cohort of fans who are upset with the result, but is it really that bad?
There’s no shame in losing to this Golden State team. At the time, it made Denver’s defense look helpless, but we now know that stopping this roster is more of a league-wide issue than a Nuggets issue.
When it came to the Warriors, they just got healthy at the right time and unfortunately for the Nuggets, they were not able to get healthy at the right time.
On top of the injuries to Murray and Porter Jr., let’s not forget that Denver lost a key defensive wing defender that they thought highly of in P.J. Dozier. Dozier was a solid wing defender that they desperately missed throughout the season and playoffs.
P.J. Was in line to play a larger role this season but an ACL tear cut his season short before he was eventually traded at the 2022 deadline.
Who knows what happens if the Denver Nuggets were fully healthy this season. Maybe they wouldn’t have faced the Warriors in the first round in the first place. One thing is for sure Denver still has a very good chance at getting back to being a contender in the Western Conference once again.
Sometimes teams need to be able to take a step back in order to be able to realize what they don’t have in order to be able to take two steps forward and win it all.
The 2010-11 Mavericks are the very exception to that as they made it to the second round of the playoffs in 2008-09 season. During the 2009-10 season they lost in the first round of the playoffs only to win a championship a year later in 2011.
There is proof that taking a step back isn’t always a bad thing and to never panic because you never know what can happen with a fully healthy roster, having all the pieces in place fitting together.
Here are some additional reasons why the Denver Nuggets losing in the first round wasn’t necessarily a bad thing for this team.