The Denver Nuggets traded for a familiar face on Thursday morning as they now have a new backup center.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) March 25, 2021
Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN followed up Shams moments later with the terms of the trade:
Denver is acquiring center Cleveland center JaVale McGee for Isaiah Hartenstein and two future protected second-round picks, sources tell ESPN.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) March 25, 2021
McGee will almost certainly slide in as the Nuggets new backup center — replacing Isaiah Hartenstein — which is a position that hasn’t really had any stability all season long.
Nuggets fans know McGee well as he spent four seasons with the Nuggets from 2011-15. Since then, McGee has made stops in Philadelphia, Dallas, Golden State, Los Angeles, and most recently with Cleveland.
In 33 games this season, McGee has averaged just 15.2 minutes per game, but has still averaged eight points and 5.2 rebounds per game. McGee not only gives the Nuggets more depth at center off the bench, but he provides them another shot blocker who averages 1.5 blocks per game throughout the course of his career.
It’s a solid move for the Nuggets as they now have a more experienced backup center than what Hartenstein provided. The only thing with trading a player and possibly two second round picks for McGee is that it felt like he was a player destined for the buyout market. The Nuggets obviously felt like they couldn’t risk it though and made the deal to acquire McGee.
Welcome back to the Mile High City, JaVale!