The Denver Post’s Mike Singer and NBA insider Chad Ford both link the Nuggets to interest in Arizona State’s high-flying guard
The Denver Nuggets are likely to have several guards available to them in tonight’s NBA draft, as it is a strength of this draft and Denver has a need with Jamal Murray on the shelf recovering from surgery and Will Barton having opted out of the last year of his contract. Chad Ford, an independent long-time NBA reporter, throws Josh Christopher’s name back into the mix for Denver:
Based on strong workouts and a strong draft Combine, Arizona State’s Josh Christopher may have played himself back into the first round — the Clippers and Nuggets both have interest.
— Chad Ford (@chadfordinsider) July 29, 2021
The Denver Post’s Mike Singer, an always-reliable source for Nuggets information, lent more credence to this rumor:
I’ve heard Nuggets are fans of Christopher, too, but I’d be surprised if they took him ahead of pack of other guards Mann/McBride/Grimes/Hyland/Springer. https://t.co/rB05g6Bw35
— Mike Singer (@msinger) July 29, 2021
I happen to agree with both of those statements. Josh Christopher does look good in workouts but lost the tail-end of his year due to a leg injury (a la Malik Beasley). Unlike Beasley, Christopher was able to get those workouts in and stabilize his draft stock in a deep guard offering, but there are surer things that Denver would hope could get to them. Christopher feels more like a fallback than a prime target, but there are worse things than landing a talented teenage prospect whose stock is in the late-20s only because he took a while to adjust to college and because his injury didn’t let him continue to show the growth he was flashing.
Our own Brandon Ewing wrote Christopher’s draft profile here, but his conclusion frames this nicely:
Christopher has a ton of talent but is not ready for real minutes with the Nuggets at this point, and would likely only see spot minutes this season. That still might be the best path for Denver depending on who is available for them however, and Tim Connelly likes his upside. Drafting as low as Denver is requires some finesse, and occasionally taking shots on players who could grow into great pros but are not there yet. In that aspect, Christopher fits the bill.
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