3 reasons why the Nuggets should prioritize health and rest over chasing the #1 seed

New York Knicks v Denver Nuggets
New York Knicks v Denver Nuggets / Matthew Stockman/GettyImages
3 of 4

2. The schedule is favorable and role players get an opportunity 

Another valid reason why the Nuggets shouldn’t overly exert themselves is because their remaining schedule isn’t very challenging. They can afford to toe the line a little bit here, resting some guys while still competing for wins.

They’ve already won games against the Blazers and Grizzlies without key players. Of their eight games left in the regular season, they still face the Jazz, the Hawks, the Grizzlies again, and the Spurs twice.

Those are all games the Nuggets should at least have a chance to win, even if they hold out some of their star players. They also host the Cavaliers - who have been floundering. Another big game against the T-Wolves still looms, and the only challenging road game is a trip to face the Clippers.

Beyond affording rest to star players, these games could also offer valuable opportunities for role players to get big minutes and have some final auditions for playoff minutes. Even this late in the season, the edges of the rotation are still up in the air. 

Guys like Christian Braun, Peyton Watson, Justin Holiday, Reggie Jackson, and Zeke Nnaji are still fighting for minutes. Not all of those bench guys will play in every game, but a strong showing over these next few weeks could earn them a longer leash when the games really matter.