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Harrison Wind

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Harrison Wind: Torrey Craig

Last season Torrey Craig averaged 20 minutes per game in the regular season but was bumped up to 23.6 per contest in the playoffs and ended up starting 11 of Denver's 14 postseason matchups. He entered the starting lineup for Game 4 of the Nuggets' first round series against the Spurs in place of Will Barton and never left Denver's first five throughout the remainder of the postseason. Barton's strong regular season combined with Gary Harris' All-NBA worthy defense this year gives Craig more roadblocks towards entering the starting five during the playoffs if they do get played this season -- although I still wouldn't rule it out especially if Denver finds itself in dire circumstances -- but he could still play a big role in the postseason.

Craig is averaging only 17.4 minutes per game this season, which a slight reduction from last year's average and makes sense considering Michael Porter Jr.'s presence in the rotation who Craig ceded minutes too. But check out how Craig played against the Rockets, Denver's presumptive first-round opponent if the postseason begins with the current playoff seeding in place.

Nov. 20 vs. Houston: 19 minutes (came off the bench)

Dec. 31 at Houston: 21 minutes (started for an injured Gary Harris)

Jan. 22 at Houston: 27 minutes (started for an injured Gary Harris)

Jan. 26 vs. Houston: 31 minutes (started for an injured Jamal Murray)

Even at full health, the Nuggets will need strong defenders if Denver draws a matchup against Houston (Russell Westbrook, James Harden), Dallas (Luka Doncic), Utah (Donovan Mitchell, Bojan Bogdanovic), Oklahoma City (Chris Paul) and the Clippers (Kawhi Leonard, Paul George) and Lakers (LeBron James). I think Michael Malone calls Craig's number often.

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Jamal Murray, Will Barton and Vlatko Cancar took part in workouts at the Nuggets' reopened practice facility this week. But workouts are currently far from normal.

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What’s your hottest Nikola Jokic take? On the latest DNVR Nuggets Podcast, Adam Mares, Harrison Wind, Brendan Vogt, Eric Wedum (D-Line), and Andy Bailey of Bleacher Report and the Hardwood Knocks podcast discuss their hottest takes about the Nuggets’ big man that they actually kind of believe. Then, The Steps. Subscribe to Andy’ Hardwood Knocks podcast here! DON’T FORGET TO…

Adam Mares: Michael Porter Jr

This hiatus is a double-edged sword for MPJ. On the one hand, it is a bit tragic that he waited two years to get back on the basketball court only to have his return to action cut short by the pandemic.  On the other hand, the 10th man in a 9.5 man rotation on a title-contending team is a difficult spot to find yourself when you are as talented as Porter. There's so much to learn in such a short window of time with almost no chance to catch your breath once things get rolling. It's like a new test everyday but with no time in between to study.

Porter is easily one of the seven most talented players on the Denver Nuggets roster but he is far and away the most inexperienced. In his debut season, he often struggled to remember plays, even those that were called for him to be the primary focus. On the defensive end, he was slow to read his assignments, often bungling a switch or rotation.

Porter would be wise to spend his quarantine by memorizing the playbook. It isn't enough to just become familiar with each play from the small forward spot, if Porter wants a spot in the rotation when the season returns he'll have to understand each player's role on the court during each action. Defensively, daily reminders of the team's schemes, rules, and assignments through film study should sharpen his understanding.

Do that, and Porter will find himself in the rotation when the season returns. Fail to do so, and the Nuggets will likely enter an accelerated end of season and playoff without him.

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On today’s show the guys welcome on Mike Singer, Denver Nuggets beat reporter for the Denver Post, to chat about the latest developments around Pepsi Center and NBA practice facilities across the league opening for workouts. Also, how the Nuggets are starting to embrace their history, Denver as a sports town and The Steps. Online With D-Line https://twitter.com/tbyrd423/status/1259918366141108224?s=20 https://twitter.com/DGlaucomflecken/status/1259684214485602304?s=20 https://twitter.com/TheTreyinator/status/1260604631727714304?s=20…

Brendan Vogt

I think the Nuggets are in the process of learning this lesson now, the lesson being the difference in the mentality of a good team, and a great team, as it pertains to finishing games and series. The Nuggets have a lot of dog in them — they've shown us time and time again they can fight back when up against the ropes, but we're still waiting to see them strike fear in the hearts of their opponents. We're still waiting for them to put other teams in the corner, and then down on the mat. Denver can run with just about everyone, but I don't think they scare anyone. 

Some of the best teams in recent history have built an identity around relentlessness, and an ability to put their feet on their opponent's necks. As any basketball fan knows, thanks to the unfathomable commitment of Chris Webber, the teams that comprise Golden State's dynasty made a habit of putting the final nail in the proverbial coffin during the third, not the fourth and final quarter. Putting the obvious talent-gap aside, The Nuggets don't have those predatory instincts. When they smell blood, they assume they've made the kill, and that's enough to satiate them. Those Warriors? It triggered a feeding frenzy, and they left no meat on the bone.

Denver should never have lost the Portland series, and sometimes I wonder if they were the last ones to know that. Yes, they struggled to guard Rodney Hood, but they also played a little scared. They seemed a little tentative. Up for the challenge, but not eager. There's a world in which the Nuggets entered that series licking their chops. Maybe, in that world, they win the series convincingly. 

I think the Nuggets can be great. My read is the Nuggets believe that too. But they need to know it, and we need to see that they do.

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Adam Mares, Harrison Wind, Brendan Vogt and Eric Wedum (D-Line) welcome back Jordan aficionado Patrick Finan to discuss Episodes 7 and 8 of The Last Dance, Michael Jordan’s leadership style and what else stood out from two of the most fascinating episodes of the documentary. Check out Patrick’s podcast: Movies N Shit here DON’T FORGET TO SUBSCRIBE! iTunes link | Stitcher Link | Pocket…

Adam Mares, Harrison Wind, Brendan Vogt and Eric Wedum (D-Line) wrap up the week in style by discussing why NBA teams are opening their practice facilities and then welcome on DNVR Members. They guys talk Bradley Beal, Jrue Holiday, Chris Paul, Jamal Murray, Monte Morris, PJ Dozier, Bol Bol and much more. DON’T FORGET TO SUBSCRIBE! iTunes link | Stitcher Link | Pocket Casts…

The Nuggets' practice facility will reopen May 8 when Denver's stay-at-home order expires but many Nuggets players currently aren't in town.

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Adam Mares, Harrison Wind, Brendan Vogt and Eric Wedum (D-Line) are joined by special guest Dr. Travis Heath for a discussion around The Last Dance and how NBA players past and present deal with fame, social media and social responsibility. Then, Online With D-Line and The Steps. Online With D-Line https://twitter.com/DaveDuFourNBA/status/1257324960877510656?s=20 https://twitter.com/MickstapeShow/status/1257458059707928576?s=20 https://twitter.com/RaTHeR_Un1QuE/status/1257797879403614209?s=20 DON’T FORGET TO SUBSCRIBE! iTunes link | Stitcher Link | Pocket…

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