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#pounditWednesday, December 1, 2021

Articles tagged: Denver Nuggets

Viral photo shows Heat waiting in hall for Nuggets after Jokic-Morris incident

Jimmy Butler

The Miami Heat players were apparently waiting for the Denver Nuggets after Monday’s game like Bishop behind Q’s locker in “Juice.”

Photographer Aaron Ontiveroz of the Denver Post posted an incredible picture to his Instagram page of the Heat gathering in the hallway after Denver’s Nikola Jokic delivered a cheap shot on Miami’s Markieff Morris (video here). Ontiveroz writes that the Heat players, led by Jimmy Butler, were looking to confront the Nuggets but that security intervened.

In the picture, you can see Butler and other Heat players (including Kyle Lowry, Bam Adebayo, and Dewayne Dedmon) glaring menacingly. Andy Elisburg, the GM of the Heat, appears to be the one preventing them from going any further. None of Miami’s players were made available to the media for comment after Monday’s game.

That amazing picture of the Heat definitely adds to the overall surrealness of the Jokic-Morris episode. We haven’t seen anything quite like this one since the incident that took place in Los Angeles a few years ago.

Photo: Jan 22, 2020; Miami, Florida, USA; Miami Heat forward Jimmy Butler (22) controls the ball against the Washington Wizards during the second half at American Airlines Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Nikola Jokic’s brothers create Twitter account to threaten Marcus Morris

Nikola Jokic and his brothers

Nikola Jokic will likely be suspended for the cheap shot he took at Markieff Morris on Monday night, but the fallout from the scrum is now extending well beyond the court.

Jokic delivered a blow to Morris’ back late in the Denver Nuggets’ win over the Miami Heat. The angry reaction came in response to Morris fouling Jokic with a hard shot to the ribs. Morris was injured on the play, but he eventually walked off the court under his own power. You can see the video of the incident here.

After the game, Morris’ twin brother Marcus took to Twitter to issue a warning for Jokic. He pointed out how Jokic “waited until bro turned his back” and wrote “NOTED,” meaning he will not forget the cheap shot from the reigning NBA MVP. Now, Jokic’s brothers are also standing up for their family member.

The Twitter account @JokicBrothers was created on Tuesday morning. It seemed like the sole purpose was to threaten Marcus Morris.

While most people initially assumed that the account was fake, it apparently is not. Jokic’s brothers confirmed to Mike Singer of the Denver Post that they created the account.

Jokic’s brothers, Nemanja and Strahinja, are well known within the NBA community. They go everywhere with Nikola and have a reputation for being intimidating guys. The Nuggets star told Lee Jenkins of Sports Illustrated years ago that Strahinja “once held down my arms and threw knives all around my head” as punishment for refusing to climb a tree.

If you remember, Jokic’s brothers looked like they wanted a piece of Phoenix Suns star Devin Booker during the playoffs last year when Nikola was ejected over an altercation with Booker. You can see the video here.

The NBA will almost certainly ask the Morris twins and the Jokic brothers to tone it down. Whether or not they’ll listen is another discussion.

H/T Loyal LBS reader Brett K

Bol Bol hinting he wants out of Denver?

Bol Bol warming up

It is proving to be a big day for the “Free Bol Bol” crowd on social media.

The Denver Nuggets big man caused a stir this week by hinting on Twitter that he wants to be traded. Bol “liked” a tweet from a fan imploring Denver to trade him instead of having the 21-year-old “riding the bench for three years straight.” Take a look.

Bol, the son of late NBA legend Manute Bol, has since “unliked” the tweet.

Due to injury concerns, Bol fell to the No. 44 pick in 2019 and had his draft rights acquired by the Nuggets. But Bol has gotten virtually no playing time since then, seeing just 6.3 minutes per game over 40 total appearances in his three seasons with Denver. This year has been particularly bad so far for Bol, who has taken the floor just once for three minutes in garbage time.

The Nuggets have generally done a good job developing young players. Stars Nikola Jokic, Jamal Murray, and Michael Porter Jr. are all homegrown. But Bol is simply not getting enough minutes in Denver. He is 7-foot-2 with both three-point shooting and ball-handling ability, so many would like to see Bol get more of a chance to capitalize on his ridiculous upside. It sounds like Bol himself wants the same as well.

Photo: Mar 28, 2021; Denver, Colorado, USA; Denver Nuggets center Bol Bol (10) warms up before the game against the Atlanta Hawks at Ball Arena. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Aaron Gordon working on contract extension with Nuggets

Aaron Gordon

After his trade to the Denver Nuggets last season, veteran forward Aaron Gordon appears to have found a home.

According to Dan Singer of the Denver Post, there is “mutual optimism” that Gordon and the Nuggets will agree to a contract extension. The deal could be finalized as early as this week.

Gordon is entering the final year of the four-year, $80 million deal he signed with the Orlando Magic. While eligible for a four-year, $88 million extension, the new deal is more likely to be for two to three years with an annual value of about $20 million.

Gordon turned out to be a good fit for Denver after the team acquired him at the trade deadline. The 25-year-old’s offensive numbers did suffer, as he averaged only 10.2 points per game. However, he was often tasked with guarding the opponent’s top threat, making him a vital part of the lineup.

After Gordon vented his frustrations with Magic management, you’d figure he’d be careful about a long-term commitment to a team. He’s clearly confident the Nuggets will keep contending for at least the next few seasons.

‘Suns in 4’ fan fight guy goes viral after sweep

Suns in 4 fan

A Phoenix Suns fan who called his shot in about as aggressive a manner as possible went viral after the team completed its sweep of the Denver Nuggets on Sunday night.

During Game 3 of the Western Conference semifinal series, a Suns fan got into a shoving match with two Nuggets fans. Things took a more serious turn when one of the Denver fans threw a couple of swings at the Suns fan. The Phoenix supporter then proceeded to pummel the guy who hit him. After he was done dominating both Nuggets fans, the Suns fan shouted “Suns in 4!”

Well, he was right. Phoenix finished off Denver with a 125-118 win in Game 4 on Sunday, and the “Suns in 4” guy went viral.

No one really emerges as a winner when grown men fight over sports teams, but it’s hard to imagine anyone looking worse than those two Nuggets fans.

Tempers flared a bit on the court between the Suns and Nuggets (video here), but Phoenix dominated the series. The Suns will now await the winner of the Jazz-Clippers series, which Utah leads 2-1.

Jamal Murray out for season with torn ACL

Jamal Murray

The Denver Nuggets’ chances of making a deep postseason run took a huge hit on Tuesday, as Jamal Murray will miss the remainder of the season with a knee injury.

Murray has been diagnosed with a torn ACL in his left knee, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic.

Murray limped off the court during Monday’s game against the Golden State Warriors late in the fourth quarter. There was initially some optimism that the injury might not be serious after he refused a wheelchair, but unfortunately an MRI has confirmed the bad news. You can see a video of the play here.

The Nuggets entered Tuesday with a record of 34-20 and in fourth place in the Western Conference. Murray has averaged 21.2 points, 4.8 assists and 4.0 rebounds per game. He had been dealing with right knee soreness prior to Monday, which led him to miss the previous four games.

Report: Austin Rivers could sign with this contender

Austin Rivers

Austin Rivers may just end up with the team that helped get his dad fired.

Mike Singer of The Denver Post reported Monday that the Denver Nuggets are interested in signing the veteran guard. The report adds that fellow free agents Troy Daniels and Gerald Green are also on Denver’s radar.

The Nuggets recently traded for high-flying forward Aaron Gordon. That left a void in their backcourt, as it cost them valuable depth pieces in Gary Harris and RJ Hampton. Singer notes that Denver does intend to add another player before the postseason, possibly on a 10-day contract.

The 28-year-old Rivers began this season with the New York Knicks. But he fell out of the rotation after the team acquired Derrick Rose. Rivers was then traded to Oklahoma City in a three-team deal at the deadline and promptly got waived by the Thunder. But he brings plenty of playoff experience to the table, having gone on runs with the LA Clippers and the Houston Rockets.

We know that Rivers loves to troll his father Doc. Signing with the team that Doc blew a 3-1 lead to last year would be another great unintentional troll.

Photo: Bryan Horowitz/Flickr via CC-BY-SA 2.0

Aaron Gordon traded to Nuggets from Magic

Aaron Gordon

Aaron Gordon has been at the center of trade rumors for what feels like years now, and the Orlando Magic star is finally on the move.

The Magic have traded Gordon to the Denver Nuggets, according to multiple reports. Gary Harris, RJ Hampton and a first-round pick are headed to Orlando in the deal.

Gordon had been frustrated with the Magic and explained earlier this week why he wanted to be traded. It became obvious that Orlando was going to give him his wish after All-Star Nikola Vucevic and Evan Fournier were also traded earlier on Thursday.

Gordon, 25, was the fourth overall pick by the Magic in the 2014 NBA Draft. He is averaging 14.6 points and 6.6 rebounds per game this season.

The Nuggets entered Thursday with a record of 26-18 and in fifth place in the Western Conference. They also acquired veteran center JaVale McGee at the deadline, so they seem intent on trying to contend this season.

Jamal Murray recognized Nuggets’ error on final play

Jamal Murray

The Denver Nuggets committed a major blunder at the end of their loss to the Washington Wizards on Thursday night, and Jamal Murray took responsibility for his role in the mental lapse.

The Nuggets were trailing 112-110 with about five seconds remaining and had a 3-on-1 fast break opportunity. Rather than cut to the basket for what probably would have been an easy game-tying lineup, Facundo Campazzo and Michael Porter Jr. stopped at the three-point line. Murray kicked the ball to Campazzo, who missed the shot. You can see the video here.

Murray wasn’t as at fault for the play as Campazzo and Porter, but he held himself accountable on Twitter after the game.

“My fault Nuggets nation.. on to the next one.. STICK WITH US!!” he wrote.

Murray even shared an angle of how bad the play was:

Porter Jr. admitted he could have cut to the basket, but he defended the mentality of wanting to hit the game-winning shot.

“I looked at the play afterwards. One of us could’ve easily cut. Honestly, I could’ve cut and got a dunk,” Porter said, via Mike Singer of the Denver Post. “But we were just thinking, one of us is going to get a three. If the shot goes in, no one’s talking about it.”

Nuggets coach Michael Malone did a good job of summing up the blunder after the game. Porter is right that no one would have criticized the play if Campazzo hit the game-winner, but he didn’t. Taking a low-percentage shot was not the right decision in that situation.

Video: Nuggets blew the last play against the Wizards so badly

Jamal Murray

The Denver Nuggets blew their game against the Washington Wizards on Thursday night with a mental fart at the end.

Denver was down by two points 112-110 with around five seconds left and the clock ticking down. Jamal Murray had the ball for a 3-on-1. Even though the lone Wizards defender went out to Murray, the other two Nuggets players hung out by the three-point line, even though they would have had a wide open layup to tie the game. Take a look at the video:

Former NBA player Jared Sullinger summed up the issue.

That was not heads-up basketball. Facundo Campazzo ended up taking and missing a 3-pointer at the buzzer. You have to wonder what Michael Porter Jr. was thinking. He had a clear open path to the basket and decided to hang out at the 3-point line next to Campazzo. What a blown opportunity.

Nuggets coach Michael Malone called it a “wasted opportunity.”

Murray said he expected Porter to cut to the basket. He also said he should have shot the ball instead of passing it.