The Denver Nuggets will have a new coach on staff. According to numerous reports, former NBA player and Philadelphia 76ers assistant coach Popeye Jones is set to become a part of Denver’s staff and join head coach Michael Malone for the coming season.
Jones played for the Nuggets from 1999-2000 and was an assistant under the 76ers head coach Doc Rivers last season. Prior to joining the 76ers coaching staff, Jones spent 7 seasons as an assistant coach with the Indiana Pacers. Jones coached alongside former NBA head coach Dave Joerger and longtime NBA player Sam Cassell last season.
Jones will go from coaching one elite big to another and fill out a coaching staff down a man after Wes Unseld Jr. departed for Washington.
This will be Jones’ first stint as an assistant coach with a team in the Western Conference, following stints in Brooklyn, Indiana and Philly.
Denver is coming off a season in which center Nikola Jokic won the first MVP award in franchise history. That said, a knee injury to Jamal Murray put a wrench in Denver’s championship aspirations, and the Nuggets wound up getting bounced in the second round of the playoffs.
That said, with Jokic in the prime of his career and Murray on the road to recovery, expectations remain sky-high ahead of the 2021-2022 NBA season. The Nuggets will need a top-notch coaching staff should the franchise want to reach its full potential during the coming season.
Aniello Piro is our Digital Media Manager. Piro has covered every professional sports team in town at one point or another and has been with Mile High Sports since he was in high school. Piro currently covers the Denver Nuggets and Colorado Rockies for Mile High Sports and hosts the 20th and Blake Podcast + the MHS Nuggets podcast. Piro recently graduated from the Metropolitan State University of Denver with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and a minor in communication studies. You can follow AP on social media @MediaByAP