The Denver Nuggets organization is in the midst of heavy change. Not only was Coach of the Year George Karl released this offseason due to lack of postseason success, but Executive of the Year Masai Ujiri decided to walk away from Denver and embrace a new, more prominent role with the Toronto Raptors.
All of these changes will weigh heavy on the Nuggets this season, and with Andre Iguodala signing with the Golden State Warriors, it will be difficult to ascend to the top of the Western Conference. It will up to a few key players to help the Nuggets maintain a respectable record and potentially make the playoffs in an extremely competitive conference.
Danilo Gallinari is arguably the most important player for the Nuggets this upcoming season. His ability to stretch the floor offensively while also providing size to help guard the paint makes him extremely valuable. Last season with the Nuggets, Gallinari averaged a career high 16.2 ppg, while also bringing in 5.2 rpg, and 0.9 spg. With Iguodala’s absence, the Nuggets will rely heavily on these numbers from Gallinari for production, both offensively and defensively.
This upcoming season, Gallinari will need to improve on his averages from last year. An increase in minutes is almost a given at this point, considering Gallinari is now one of the Nuggets’ best players, so an increase in his offensive production is not out of the question either. In his first season with the New York Knicks, Gallinari shot 45 percent from the field. He will need to get back to this percentage in order to be offensively efficient while on the floor. This will be a tumultuous season for the Nuggets. Hopefully, Gallinari’s play can help the Nuggets rise above potential mediocrity.
Jared Doyle is a Miami Heat writer for RantSports.com.
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