3 studs and 3 duds from Nuggets game 4 win over Timberwolves

Denver Nuggets v Minnesota Timberwolves - Game Four
Denver Nuggets v Minnesota Timberwolves - Game Four / David Berding/GettyImages
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Dud #2: Michael Porter Jr.

It’s hard to knock MPJ much as he has been one of the best players the Nuggets have had this postseason and their most consistent player outside of Jokic. He has also been the only Nugget shooting well as he’s been lighting it up from three-point land all playoffs.

Porter Jr. has also upped his defensive focus and intensity in an impressive way that has made him someone Michael Malone can’t take off the floor. Amazingly enough, he’s been doing all this with clouds of distraction hanging over his head as he’s seen tragic circumstances befall three of his brothers all within the past six weeks.

All things considered, MPJ has been awesome for the Nuggets when they’ve needed him most. But Sunday night, that was not the case as he came through with a rare clunker and his worst game of the playoffs. Porter Jr. scored just 4 points in 35 minutes and didn’t make a single three-pointer. He also looked a step slow on defense and had trouble fighting through screens on the perimeter. Ultimately, Malone chose to ride with Braun over Porter down the stretch as the team was getting almost nothing out of MPJ.

He’ll have plenty of opportunities to rebound from this showing, and he’s earned the benefit of the doubt. But the Nuggets need Porter’s offense and shooting to unlock the best version of this championship team.