Brian Shaw will be taking over the head coaching duties for the Denver Nuggets for the 2013-2014 NBA season, a post held by George Karl last year, and with that will obviously come some changes. There could be changes in the offense, in the mentality and the in the overall scheme of this Nuggets team this year, which we will have to wait to see.
However, one change that we can almost surely expect to see is Wilson Chandler playing on the wing more. After he returned from injury last season to play in 43 games for Denver, Chandler spent the majority of his minutes playing at the four as an undersized power forward. However, Shaw has expressed his plans to keep Chandler on the wing more often this season.
According to reports from Nuggets media day by Denver Stiffs, Chandler seems glad to be getting more minutes away from the power forward position. Chandler noted that playing defense against bigger guys in the post last season caused him to break down a bit and didn’t allow him to be at his full level of effectiveness on either end of the floor. He believes playing on the wing will help him show more improvement.
Because of the reasons Chandler mentioned, as well as the addition of Darrell Arthur this summer as part of the Kosta Koufos trade, Shaw’s plan for Chandler makes a ton of sense. In addition to making him more effective, it will also give Chandler at the opportunity to affect the game more with his outside-shooting ability.
Last season, Chandler shot a career-high 41.3 percent from long-range, a far step up from his career 33.5 percent shooting for his career. However, over the last two or three seasons, Chandler has focused on improving that area of his game and making the three-ball a weapon in his arsenal. With him playing out on the wing, that will give the Nuggets a player that can knock down open threes. That will be an important role for them all season, but even more so with Danilo Gallinari’s indefinite timetable for returning to action.
Chandler was asked to do a lot of different things for the Nuggets last season, but his role should be more defined this season. Because of that, he will be able to focus what he’s working on, stay in better health, and be able to, hopefully, withstand a full season. If it all works out as planned, Chandler could be in for a career-year.
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