Thursday night may prove to be one of the biggest nights in Denver Nuggets history and the team needs to understand that. Denver has two great young pieces already in Emmanuel Mudiay and Nikola Jokic. It is now time to use these three first-round draft picks to add to the nucleus of this team.
The Nuggets can keep their three first-round draft picks, trade up, trade down or perhaps package some or all of the picks in a blockbuster deal if the situation presents itself.
One thing is for certain, whatever general manager Tim Connelly decides to do, it must be right. Denver was dead last in the NBA in attendance this season, and the patience of fans is running thin after the team missed the playoffs for a third consecutive season.
It’s not every year that a team somehow acquires three first-round draft picks. Denver should be able to get a stud with the seventh pick. Perhaps the Nuggets can draft a scorer in Buddy Hield from Oklahoma. If not, Denver could gamble on Marquese Chriss from Washington. Chriss has a huge upside at the power forward position and could still be on the board when Denver drafts.
The Nuggets should go point guard with one of their two remaining first round draft picks. It is important that the Nuggets have depth at that position behind Mudiay. Demetrius Jackson from Notre Dame could be a guy Denver targets mid first-round. Although Jackson is undersized a bit, he has showed the poise to be able handle the floor when Mudiay sits.
It is difficult to predict what Denver will do with their last first-round pick. Perhaps Connelly goes oversees for another project or the Nuggets trade out of the pick to stockpile for the 2017 draft. Or maybe the team has an opportunity to package the pick with a Danilo Gallinari or Kenneth Faried in order to acquire a proven NBA star.
All eyes will be on Connelly and it is time for him to earn his contract extension. Given the overhaul of this team, Connelly has done a very good job so far in rebuilding the Nuggets. However, all it takes to ruin that is missing on Thursday night.
The pressure is on. The future success of the Nuggets or lack thereof will be determined this week.
To hear more conversations on Tim Connelly and the Nuggets draft, listen below …
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