With nearly half of the Western Conference hovering around .500, it’s hard to count any team out of the race at this point in the season. However, one of the biggest question marks for the Denver Nuggets is undoubtedly Michael Porter Jr.
The Denver Nuggets are currently sitting at 15-10 and are thick in the race for the No.1 seed in the Western Conference. While the team has had some really good games thus far, they’ve also had a few games where the team has not looked anything like the championship contender we all thought they would be.
Nikola Jokic is doing Jokic things, leading the team like he does every year, Jamal Murray is knocking off the rust and is starting to look like the Murray of old, while Bones Hyland is showing everyone why he deserved to be drafted higher than 26th overall in last year’s draft.
While he may be able to score the ball well, Michael Porter Jr. has not been looking like the player that the Nuggets were expecting to be when they handed him a max contract a few years ago.
Can Michael Porter Jr. stay healthy enough for the Denver Nuggets to compete?
The Denver Nuggets are incredibly deep but even with Jokic and Murray leading the way, the team still needs everyone to chip in if they hope to win their first-ever NBA championship this season.
The question is whether or not Michael Porter Jr. will be able to stay healthy for a deep playoff run or if the Nuggets should consider moving on from the young forward, especially when you consider his lengthy injury history. As the 24-year-old has already undergone three back surgeries in his young career and has missed nine games this season due to injury as well.
Denver has never seen its big three fully healthy or what it looks like when they all playing are at their best. As such, the team might be curious to see how high-powered their offense can be if all three can be a cohesive unit at the same time.
However, it might be best for the team to get the most out of a trade for Michael Porter Jr. before it’s too late. After all, he may be a great basketball player, but it does not mean anything if he is not on the court.
What is Michael Porter Jr. worth on the trade market?
Moving Michael Porter Jr. for someone that will contribute to a deep playoff run and be healthy along the way could be exactly what the Denver Nuggets need to win their first-ever NBA title. Particularly when you consider the fact that there should be several young, rebuilding teams at least interested in seeing if they can get the best out of MPJ that the league has not seen yet.
Getting veteran pieces from a rebuilding team, like the Detroit Pistons, for example, can help the Nuggets out when it comes to playoffs and give them potentially the deepest rotation in the Western Conference.
Getting rid of Porter Jr. surely won’t be an easy task given that the team is unlikely to receive a player even close to being as talented in return. MPJ also has such a massive contract and he’s already missed significant time in the past two seasons, so, there are certainly red flags on both sides.
Regardless, trading Michael Porter Jr. for more depth will help the Denver Nuggets finally snap their bad luck and hopefully make their first trip to the NBA Finals in franchise history.