2022 NBA Draft: Three players the Denver Nuggets could draft

COLLEGE PARK, MARYLAND - FEBRUARY 27: E.J. Liddell #32 of the Ohio State Buckeyes handles the ball against the Maryland Terrapins at Xfinity Center on February 27, 2022 in College Park, Maryland. (Photo by G Fiume/Getty Images)
COLLEGE PARK, MARYLAND - FEBRUARY 27: E.J. Liddell #32 of the Ohio State Buckeyes handles the ball against the Maryland Terrapins at Xfinity Center on February 27, 2022 in College Park, Maryland. (Photo by G Fiume/Getty Images) /
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CLEVELAND, OHIO – FEBRUARY 18: MarJon Beauchamp #14 of the G League Ignite reacts after being introduced before the 2022 Clorox Rising Stars at Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse on February 18, 2022 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OHIO – FEBRUARY 18: MarJon Beauchamp #14 of the G League Ignite reacts after being introduced before the 2022 Clorox Rising Stars at Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse on February 18, 2022 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /

MarJon Beauchamp

MarJon Beauchamp once again adds what Denver needs to get over the top in the West; defense.

As a 6’6”, 196-pound hybrid shooting guard/small forward, Beauchamp, a member of the NBA’s G-League Ignite, is another high-energy player who would be a fantastic option for the Denver Nuggets. While he not be as efficient offensively compared to Liddell, he makes up for it with a strong defensive game.

This year, he played a limited scoring role that utilized his over 7-foot wing span to lock down the opponents best guard and wing players, defending them down low or at the top of the key. He became a slasher and off-ball scorer that (while wasn’t the best shooter) provided the extra support on the low block.

Despite not being the best shooter beyond the arc, Beauchamp can be what a team needs on the defensive end. Which is hard to find as the modern NBA is more offensively-driven than in previous years.

Beauchamp took a long road to get to the NBA. Going to Chameleon BX, a training program for hopefuls instead of the college route, only to then see his opportunity limited due to COVID-19 restrictions. Before then playing for his local hometown college in Yaminka, Washington and finally, the NBA G-League.

Where he would blossom into a talented defensive piece that could be very attractive to teams looking for that spark at the three or four position. Specifically a team that’s desperate to limit the opposing team’s stars scoring ability.

Although, Beauchamp said that it’s these hardships that have helped him get to where he is today.

"“I feel like I’ve found myself and learned new things about myself,” he said on a pre-draft Zoom call last Friday. “I’ve grown as a man, and taken steps to where I need to be.” “I was very close to giving up the game when I moved back to Yakima from Chameleon BX,” Beauchamp said. “That was probably the hardest time in my life. It was pretty tough because I didn’t have any opportunities. Like they said, they love you when you’re at your highest, but when you’re at your lowest, you don’t really hear from anyone. That was the position I was in.”"

His ball movement and excellent defensive game along with his low paint and post scoring ability would perfectly complement players like Jamal Murray, Nikola Jokic, and Michael Porter Jr. Allowing the Nuggets’ playmakers to kick the ball out in space while Beauchamp remains an anchor on defense to not give the opponent any leeway.

Some NBA comparisons for Beauchamp include Brandon Clarke, Kelly Oubre Jr., and Blake Griffin. Traditional paint guys who combine their ability to score down low with the defense and athleticism to impact a game when needed.

Scouts have said that his improvement was noticeable with the Ignite as well, with him being second on the team in scoring this past season. Averaging 15.1 points, 2.5 assists, 7.5 rebounds and 1.5 steals per game in over 36 minutes played.

"“A glue guy who can fit around other types of players. He’s better in the open court than he is in the half court,” the source said. “His mid-range stuff is good. He did not shoot the ball from 3 — his numbers were poor — but there’s nothing wrong with his shot. He just had to do it more. “Score in transition and make mid-range shots off of pin-downs, he became really efficient that way.”"

His game certainly needs work, but, with improvement, he can be just what the doctor ordered if you’re a franchise like the Denver Nuggets. An offensive team in search of high-energy pieces and a spark plug that can help space out the floor and make plays with reading coverages.

Due to his potential and versatility, Beauchamp has been thrown around all ends of the draft board. While most slots have him going in the mid-late twenties, the Nuggets might be able to snag him at 21 (or if they’re lucky, 30).

He’s going to be a project offensively but his defense is exactly what coach Malone and his staff are looking for. Somebody who can use their athleticism to make big plays and, over time, improve their shooting to become a lethal sledgehammer. Making him a deadly addition to any team looking for that key specialist who can grow and become a flex player in a system designed to bring out the best of their abilities.