Obviously, the general consensus around the league is that the more depth, the better. However, for a team that boasts a bevy of young talent, it could be more harmful than not.
First and foremost, it can lead to the lack of an identity. And while I’m all for the concept of being team-oriented, it doesn’t exactly lend itself to players developing defined roles.
For example, the stats show that George Karl still relies heavily on his perimeter players to do the bulk of the scoring. Danilo Gallinari, Ty Lawson, and Andre Iguodala are the only players on the team taking double-digit field goal attempts on a nightly basis.
That said, why is it that not a single player on the Denver Nuggets appears within the top 35 players for field goal attempts per game?
Why do they rank 13th in offensive efficiency and ninth in points per game as a team, despite ranking eighth in pace of play while averaging the league’s fourth most field goal attempts?
Because not only are the Nuggets taking shots without a purpose, no one actually seems to want to shoot the ball.
At this point, it just seems like Denver is a flat-out too selfless on offense.
So while that always makes for a happy locker room, teams don’t win championships playing hot potato.
As a matter of fact, there hasn’t been an NBA teams that has won a title with a player averaging less than 20 points per game in the Finals since the Los Angeles Lakers did it in 1983. And let’s face it, the league has changed a little bit since Magic Johnson was lacing them up in his rookie season.
That being said, facts are facts and I have a feeling Denver fan’s might share my choice feelings for first round exits. The only way I can see that changing is if someone steps up as an offensive leader.
Iguodala and Faried are both team captains and are game changers with their energy and sheer effort alone, but neither are capable of leading an offense. Iguodala has shown some scoring outbursts as of late, which is always nice, but let’s not fool ourselves into thinking he’s Kevin Durant.
Fortunately, we do have two scorers on our team that can hang with the best of them, Gallinari and Lawson. The Nuggets’ 2nd and 4th leading scorers respectively, albeit they’re shooting a combined 39 percent from the floor.
A lot of it clearly has to do with confidence, as Gallo is about as streaky as they come and Lawson is still settling into the roomy shoes of his new contract. Luckily, it doesn’t hurt that shooting slumps are made to be broken and that the NBA has a pretty quirky sense of humor when it comes to momentum.
If the two can hit their stride heading into the All-Star break and more importantly show the capacity to be a little selfish, there might be a small chance this team can develop a true offensive identity in time for the playoffs.
You can catch the Nuggets as they match up against the Golden State Warriors live on TNT Thursday night, 10:30 PM ET. You can also check back at Rant Sports for your daily Nugget’ news.