Nuggets stock watch: 2 intriguing risers, and 1 disappointing faller

Denver Nuggets v San Antonio Spurs
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Stock down: Christian Braun

Braun came into the season with expectations similar to those of Watson, except having shown more last year, there was a higher level of comfort. Braun had some great moments in the NBA playoffs and Finals last season as a rookie and was the player most expected to take a leap and become the most important and reliable bench contributor.

Braun hasn’t been bad this year by any means, but he also hasn’t separated himself from the other bench players. He’s had his moments, but he’s been generally inconsistent. His stats are similar to last year across the board despite having increased minutes and usage.

His advanced stats have actually mostly regressed from last season, and it just doesn’t feel like he’s made the most of his minutes. I’m sure he’ll still get minutes in the playoffs, but he hasn’t run away with the job the way that many hoped he would.

Coming into the season the Nuggets were hoping that Braun would take a major step and emerge as a young core part of this team going forward. While that may still end up being the case, he hasn’t done anything to prove that.

He’s been just another guy off the bench, and on any given night, any of Watson, Justin Holiday, or Reggie Jackson could be preferred to Braun. Luckily for Braun, he’ll be judged in the playoffs more than any other time, but if he doesn’t perform on the court, he could see his minutes limited.

He has been playing his best ball of the season lately, and maybe this latest stretch is a sign of things to come. He could easily end up with a rising stock by the time it’s all said and done. This is another signal of how the Nuggets have it pretty good right now.