One by one, Nuggets players filter off Denver’s second-floor practice gym, hit the showers and get on with their days. It’s Wednesday, the Nuggets’ second of three straight days without a game and a rare break amid a whirlwind first two months of the regular season. Spirits are high, especially when it comes to Monte Morris, Malik Beasley and Mason Plumlee, who are all enjoying standout seasons in their respective roles off Denver’s bench.
Trey Lyles has to be feeling a little left out from the success that his second unit compadres have had this season. Morris is shooting 43.8 percent from three-point range this year, second on the team only to Juancho Hernangomez, and is leading the league in assist-to-turnover ratio. Beasley is quickly emerging as a reliable two-way wing who at just 22 years old is just beginning to scratch the surface of his potential. Plumlee has been the bench’s defensive anchor all season while scoring at one of the most efficient rates of his career.
But Lyles has struggled on the offensive end of the floor, particularly with his three-point shot, which he’s only hitting at a 25.3 percent rate.
“I’ve been playing for a long time. I’ve had streaks like this before,” Lyles said in a mostly empty gym following an extra post-practice shooting session. “It’s something that I’m not going to say I’m used to, but I’ve been through before and I know how to get out of it. I’ve just got to continue to be aggressive and be who I am as a player.”