This summer has not been kind to the Denver Nuggets. Going into the 2013 season, their team has taken one giant step backwards in a particular area that wasn’t even necessarily a strength last year.
Losing out on Andre Iguodala and Corey Brewer hurts the team big time in terms of defense. They were both without a doubt the two best perimeter defenders on the team, and next to JaVale McGee in the post, the best defenders on the team overall. Iguodala was the team’s best defender by a long shot, and without him or Brewer they are left without definitive defenders on the wing.
Danilo Gallinari and Wilson Chandler are both solid swingmen, in respect to offense. They can fill it up on any given night and when hot, can get a nice stroke going from outside. Signing former Utah Jazz guard Randy Foye will also more than likely help out offensively, but still, will not address the defensive gap that is left by Iguodala and Brewer.
Iguodala spurned the Nuggets for the Golden State Warriors, making them one of the big-time favorites in the West next year among a couple other powerhouses. Brewer, on the other hand, decided to head back to where his NBA career started in joining the Minnesota Timberwolves.
For the Nuggets to have anywhere near the same success they had last season they are going to either have to adapt a new defensive mindset among their current roster, or go after another perimeter defender — which, at this point, isn’t likely. There aren’t too many guys left in that category that are truly worth a look.
Denver may be in some serious trouble next year without their two defensive gurus on the wings. They’re going to have to depend heavily on their post play and fast break. Of course, without the elite defenders there could be a lack of fast breaks which will ultimately hurt them even more. It’s going to be tough for Denver to duplicate last season without these guys.