A restricted free agent, Nurkic will elect to stay in Portland after no other teams elected to submit a competitive offer sheet. He averaged 14.3 points, 9.0 boards and 1.8 assists in 79 games during the 2017-2018 season.
Nurkic spent his first full season in Portland last year after being traded there from Denver in February of 2017. He started all 79 games he appeared in, seeing 26.4 minutes per game and averaging 14.3 points, 9.0 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 1.4 blocks. If an offer from another team comes in and the Blazers choose not to match it, Portland would lose its third-leading scorer. Aside from Nurkic, Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum, nobody else on the team averaged double-digit points last season.
Nurkic (leg) contributed 13 points (5-12 FG, 3-4 FT), three rebounds, one steal and one block across 15 minutes during Portland's 111-102 loss to the Pelicans in Game 2 of their Western Conference first-round playoff series.
Nurkic was on his way to a second consecutive productive effort to open the series before suffering a leg injury in the third quarter that forced him from the contest. The big man's scoring and rebounding presence was missed down low for the remainder of the contest, and the Blazers would face even steeper odds in Game 3 on the road if he were to miss. The fourth-year big man's status will likely be updated Wednesday, but given the quick turnaround for Thursday's contest, he may be hard-pressed to suit up depending on the severity of the injury.
Nurkic finished with 11 points (3-7 FG, 5-5 FT), 11 rebounds and two blocks across 25 minutes in Portland's 97-95 loss to the Pelicans in Game 1 of their Western Conference first-round playoff series.
Nurkic was one of four Blazers to hit double digits in the scoring column, but he had a tough night on the defensive end while guarding Anthony Davis more than he usually did during the regular season. The big man was less involved offensively than usual, as well, as he'd finished the regular season putting up double-digit shot attempts in six of his last seven games. He'll look to get back to that level of usage when the two teams clash again Tuesday in Game 2.
Nurkic churned out 13 points (6-16 FG, 1-5 FT), nine rebounds, three assists, four blocks and one steal across 30 minutes in a 102-93 win over the Jazz on Wednesday.
Nurkic served as an effective third wheel to the efforts of Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum on the night, just missing what would have been his fifth straight double-double. The 23-year-old big man was much more consistent in the latter stages of the season, averaging an impressive 15.0 points, 10.6 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 1.8 blocks across 26.3 minutes over 24 post-All-Star-break games. He'll be counted on for similar production down low during the playoffs, as well as his trademark stingy defense near the basket.
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