Denver Nuggets: 3 Players Who Disappointed This Season
- The Nuggets exceeded expectations this season, but suffered a heart-breaking Game 7 loss at the hands of the Trail Blazers.
In the process of finishing just 3 games behind the mighty Warriors on the Western Conference standings, the Nuggets achieved much more during the regular season than just the second seed on the leaderboard. In the playoffs, Denver bowed out to the surging Trail Blazers in the second round via a heartbreaking Game 7 loss.
“For us, tonight is the end of the season, but I’m not going to allow this Game 7 loss to take away from a magical year and it doesn’t feel that way right now,” Michael Malone said after Denver’s loss. “But, when I reflect and when our players reflect on what we were able to accomplish, hell of a year, couldn’t have asked anything more for our guys.”
Although they were not as dominant in the postseason, Jokic and his Nuggets had manufactured a sturdy launching pad for the franchise for years to come. Their impeccable run meant growth for everyone involved in the overall operation from the coaching staff to the star players to the role players and the front office as well. Carrying one of the youngest rosters across the league and considering the strides they made along the year, it's safe to say that future is in safe hands down in Denver.
However, as the team found its identity under Coach Malone, there were some players who couldn't quite get it done. Let's take a look at the three most disappointing players during the Denver Nuggets' 2018-19 campaign.
#1 Will Barton
During the regular season, Barton played just 43 games (missed considerable time due to a hip injury in just the second game of the year) and averaged 11.5 points, 4.6 rebounds and 2.9 assists per game in over 27 minutes of playtime per contest.
Despite showing flashes of brilliance in the playoffs, Barton was inconsistent as a whole, coming off the bench. He averaged an unimpressive 9.1 points and 4.6 rebounds per game during the 14 postseason games that he appeared in this year. Not the best defender on the court by any means, Barton also shot a miserable 27.3% from beyond the arc - a step down from his 34% 3-point conversion during the regular season. Moreover, he had just 8 points in Denver's Game 7 loss the Blazers.
Keeping in mind that he's slated to make another $12,960,000 during the 2019-20 season, there are numerous players available in the NBA who can provide more production than the 28-year-old at a much lower price.