The Denver Nuggets walloped the New York Knicks last night 110-94 behind a couple of strong performances. One from young rising star, Nikola Jokic, and another from the Manimal, Kenneth Faried. Jokic scored 20 on 9/20 shooting and Faried posted a double-double with 24 points and 10 rebounds. Four other Nuggets scored in double figures.
A game like last night shows why the future is bright for the young Denver Nuggets. With the likes of Jokic, Emmanuel Mudiay, and Gary Harris, the Nuggets have a strong core to build off in the years to come and while they may not be playoff contenders this year, the games still mean a lot.
Emmanuel Mudiay is only 20 years old and is already showing extreme growth from the start of the season. In the last four games, Mudiay has scored over 15 points while turning the ball over very rarely, 3 times or less. This is a great sign that the young point guard, along with the 21 year old center Jokic, can lead this team in the future.
Gary Harris, age 21, Jusuf Nurkic, 21, Jakarr Sampson, 22, Joffrey Lauvergne, 24, and Will Barton, 25, round out the nuggets young, athletic roster. With pieces like these, the future is as bright as the sun for the nuggets. Not to mention the Nuggets will have four first round draft picks in the next year.
Recently Coach Michael Malone stated that the young guns would be getting more minutes towards the end of games and this is going to prove to be an extremely valuable for the future stars. Learning how to close out games, play tight defense, and make the clutch shots at the end of games, during a time where the Nuggets are not competing for the playoffs, will take some of the stress off of the young guys while still allowing them to develop the necessary skills.
As they say, patience is a virtue, and for the Nuggets and fans of the team this rings very true. With games like last night, there is no reason to believe that the Nuggets will not be competing for a playoff spot, a hopefully an NBA championship within the next couple of years.