The Denver Nuggets landed wing Andre Iguodala as part of the Dwight Howard/Andrew Bynum trade last summer, and the move has paid off nicely for Denver. Even though some of the other teams in the scenario didn’t get quite what they expected, Iguodala has given the Nuggets exactly what they needed from him.
Iguodala’s statistical output isn’t the most spectacular — he averaged just 13 points, 5.3 rebounds and 5.4 assists per game while shooting .451 from the field and .317 from three, so nothing off-the-charts special. But Iguodala’s ability to contribute to the game in multiple facets and his versatility blend perfectly with the Nuggets style of play.
Denver has a number of players that can play multiple positions, with Iguodala being the most interchangeable of them all. His natural position is small forward, but Iguodala can play the two-guard spot in stretches if required. Need a back up point guard? Iguodala’s ability to handle the basketball and make good passes/decisions/plays for his teammates can do the trick.
Not only is Iguodala versatile offensively, he’s also one of the better wing defenders in the NBA. He’s athletic enough to both chase shooters around the court and off screens, while also have the quickness and footwork to lock down opposing PG’s as well.
The Nuggets will need Iguodala to be at his best in their series against the Golden State Warriors. Golden State has a number of players on the perimeter that can be dangerous, and Iguodala’s jack-of-all-trades style of play will be key to shutting down Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Jarrett Jack; whichever one is the hot hand at the moment.
Iguodala gives the Nuggets just what they need this series; a player capable of playing and defending multiple positions. His contributions on both ends of the court will be an x-factor for Denver in their first round series.