The Denver Nuggets should avoid TyTy Washington in the 2022 NBA Draft
This slide is less about TyTy Washington being a poor fit and more about signalling that the front office isn’t making decisions based on what’s best for the organization.
Washington might be the best non-lottery point guard in the entire draft and he could be right there for the taking for the Denver Nuggets with either of their picks. His draft stock has fallen in the past few weeks and it could be him falling or the guys around him rising.
Kevin O’Connor, The Ringer says he’s an excellent playmaker who uses plenty of veteran tricks to find a shot for himself or a teammate. He does mention some struggles when it comes to scoring:
"“[He’s a] lethal midrange scorer who makes 52.5 percent of his floaters and 43 percent of his dribble-jumper 2s. He has every move he needs to become a potent 3-point shooter with side steps and stepbacks, though he’s made just 30.4 percent of dribble-jumper 3s at Kentucky.”"
If the Nuggets draft a point guard like Washington on draft night, it could signal their potential to duck under the luxury tax line, as I mentioned last week. Ownership could reasonably hide behind Hyland’s development and Jamal Murray’s return as reasons to not need Monte Morris’ talents anymore.
If they think they can replace an excellent playmaking guard with a rookie, they are sorely mistaken. Even a great passer like TyTy will need time to adjust to the NBA game, as have many young point guards entering the league, and next season is a the Nuggets’ first chance at an NBA championship in a long time.
As John Hollinger, The Athletic put it in his mock draft:
"“It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see that the Nuggets can get under the luxury tax if they trade Monte Morris, and that he probably has enough demand around the league that it wouldn’t be hard to pull off. The Nuggets can fortify their flank in the backcourt by taking Washington; his stock has seemingly cooled off since an awesome midseason stretch, but he still might be the best pure point guard in a fairly weak class at the position.”"
Hopefully, Booth uses these draft picks to find a more veteran contributor or address a position of need like defensive wings. I’ll be worried if I see something different.