Vegas Over/Under: 45.5
The Record Projection: 48 of fromal The Bet: Over with confidence
When Nikola Jokic re-entered the starting lineup on December 15, everything clicked.
From there forward, the Denver Nuggets submitted the league’s best offensive evaluation (113.3). And though they had been remarkably porous (league-worst 111.9 defensive rating), they still outscored their foes and claimed themselves as a valid danger to make the playoffs.
Paul Millsap is the perfect match next to Jokic, gracing the Nuggets along with his defensive acumen and flexible offensive play. He provides the Mile High City a second top-25 participant, and his presence immediately creates among the NBA’s most dangerous frontcourt pairings.
How will opponents handle passing coming from many distinct places in 2017-18? How can they counteract the offensive excellence when a legitimate defensive stalwart is creating Jokic’s life easier?
And the frontcourt isn’t the only reason for unmitigated optimism.
Gary Harris enjoys enormous synergy with Jokic and is coming off a breakout season. He should keep on emerging as among the Association’s better 2-guards, and he’s joined by yet another high-upside backcourt member in Jamal Murray.
Losing Danilo Gallinari hurts, and the Nuggets largely failed to combine their assets. But this is a deep team overflowing with gift in many distinct positions.