Early returns for Zion Williamson, Damian Lillard, Kawhi Leonard


Youth, plus endurance and former monitor document, equal cautiously snug: Jamal Murray

Picture: Getty Photos

We haven’t seen Jamal Murray rating greater than 40 factors since he dropped a 50 burger on the Cavs in February 2021. To be truthful, he didn’t tear his ACL till a few months after that, didn’t have an damage historical past earlier than the tear, and, at his peak, can rating with any guard within the NBA.

He didn’t return to the playoffs final season like lots of Denver followers had hoped for, however I’d somewhat not mess with dashing again from an ACL when it wouldn’t have mattered. To date, in about 26 minutes per recreation, he’s nonetheless discovering his legs and the boldness in them. The Nuggets are 2-2 in video games he’s performed (they’re 3-2 general), and he’s taking pictures 38 % from the ground, 6 factors decrease than his profession common.

Except you had cash on the Nuggets for one of the best document within the league, it’s insanely early to fret about him, or his crew, although. They’ve the reigning two-time MVP, and Nikola Jokic primarily doubles as coaching wheels for Murray’s comeback.

My greatest fear about Denver is its protection, and it’ll take a bit for the seventh-year guard to regain the power to stay with opposing backcourts. The Nuggets are backside 4 in factors allowed at 111 per recreation, and solely actually have two, possibly three defense-first guys on their roster in Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Aaron Gordon, and no matter bench participant Nugs’ followers assume I forgot.

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