Nuggets GM Tim Connelly spoke with the Denver Post about the future of the team heading into a big offseason and indicated that big things could lie ahead for Denver:
"It's huge," Connelly said of this offseason. "We came here with pretty high expectations and certainly didn't meet our internal goals. This summer, we're going to go all-in and try to take the next step."
By "all-in," Connelly means this: "I've already let all the other guys in different front offices around the league know that we're open for business. ... If you really study our team, we have a lot of flexibility."
The Nuggets do in fact have a number of options. If either or both of their pick and the Knick's pick were to hit in the lottery (which is unlikely), the Nuggets get the better of the two picks (and send the other to Orlando). Would they be willing to trade that pick along with a player like Kenneth Faried to land a major upgrade?
Their biggest issue is the cap space they have tied up next year. They have movable contacts, but moving their most difficult, JaVale McGee, might be the priority. There's no way to know if we would have seen the same improvement from JaVale McGee that we saw from Kenneth Faried by year's end under Brian Shaw, but there's also been no indication of an improved level of maturity or work ethic from McGee beyond some early season flashes.
Past that, is Ty Lawson big enough to be effective in Shaw's system, which doesn't want his guards constantly switching and doesn't want to send help? Is Timofey Mozgov the rim protector they need?
There are options for Denver, but just as many questions. Connelly took over late last year and had little time to make moves in the offseason. This summer has been targeted as the first time he can start moving the team in the direction he and the Nuggets' thinktank front office think is best. It'll be interesting to see what he can make happen.