5 Nuggets who could get axed from Michael Malone's playoff rotation

These Nuggets may not stick in the team’s playoff rotation.

Denver Nuggets, Michael Malone
Denver Nuggets, Michael Malone / Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
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3. Peyton Watson

The 2022 first-round draft pick barely played as a rookie. He was limited to mop-up duties save for the final six games of the regular season where the Nuggets rested their best players to gear up for the playoffs. The 21-year-old has become a nightly part of the rotation in year two, but his warts will likely limit his playing time in the playoffs.

Watson is averaging 6.7 points, 3.0 rebounds, 1.0 assist, and 1.0 block in 18.3 minutes per game this season. He is 6’8 with a seven-foot wingspan and already stands out on the defensive end. It is his offensive game that leaves question marks.

Watson is a career 31.2 percent 3-point shooter and offers little playmaking. He has no concrete role on that end of the floor, which has led him to a negative value over replacement player (VORP) this season. Teams will leave Watson open in the playoffs and dare him to shoot. If he continues to miss or hesitates to fire, coach Malone has to go in a different direction.

Peyton Watson is eighth on the team in minutes played this season. If everyone is healthy, he could be the final cut from the playoff rotation. Expect the 6’8 wing to get opportunities, but it will be on him to make the most of them.