The Denver Nuggets’ Most Underrated Players This Season

Jan 21, 2017; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Nuggets head coach Michael Malone in the first quarter against the Los Angeles Clippers at the Pepsi Center. The Nuggets won 123-98. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Jan 21, 2017; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Nuggets head coach Michael Malone in the first quarter against the Los Angeles Clippers at the Pepsi Center. The Nuggets won 123-98. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

A look into Michael Malone’s key figures flying under the radar this season for the Denver Nuggets.

Heading into February, the Denver Nuggets are sitting firmly in the eighth position of the Western Conference.

And despite a recent blip and injury to Nikola Jokic, they don’t look like they’ll be budging anytime soon.

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There has been various reason’s why Michael Malone’s side has turned their season around; lineup changes in December, a trip to London or maybe the heroics of a certain Nikola Jokic.

However, over the course of this long season, the Nuggets have benefited from having an extended roster that offers considerable depth. With this in mind, Malone has seen various players step up and take the mantle when needed.

Let’s take a look at a few players that have rallied this Nuggets side when called upon but perhaps do not garner as much attention as they may deserve:

Dec 28, 2016; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Nuggets forward Kenneth Faried (35) reacts during the second half against the Minnesota Timberwolves at Pepsi Center. The Nuggets won 105-103. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

Dec 28, 2016; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Nuggets forward Kenneth Faried (35) reacts during the second half against the Minnesota Timberwolves at Pepsi Center. The Nuggets won 105-103. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

Kenneth Faried:

Starting the season off the bench, Faried was disappointed with his initial role.

But being a professional, the energetic forward took to the court to speak his actions.

Faried has provided instant energy and impact off the bench and during difficult, stagnating periods of a game, the five-year pro has forced his team back into contention.

As of late, Faried has worked well alongside Nikola Jokic.

And whilst his stats may not always be groundbreaking, the 27-year-old has been important for the Nuggets.

Offering constant hustle and desire to win a basketball game, ‘The Manimal’ does all those intangibles that do not necessarily show up on the stat sheet.

Nov 27, 2016; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Denver Nuggets guard Jameer Nelson (1) against the Phoenix Suns at Talking Stick Resort Arena. The Nuggets defeated the Suns 118-114. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Nov 27, 2016; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Denver Nuggets guard Jameer Nelson (1) against the Phoenix Suns at Talking Stick Resort Arena. The Nuggets defeated the Suns 118-114. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

 Jameer Nelson:

Nelson has arguably endured a love-hate relationship with Nuggets fans this season.

From taking and missing unquestionably difficult shots during a late game, to then making important clutch shots in a fixture down the stretch.

It has been an up and down season for the point guard, but it cannot be denied that the veteran has offered huge support and experience for his younger teammates.

In games where Emmanuel Mudiay’s inexperience and lack of confidence has been evident, Nelson has jumped in and steadied the ship.

If the Nuggets are to make the playoffs this season, then they’ll owe a major thanks to Nelson for the games he has impacted in positively rather than the few he could not save for us.

Nov 27, 2016; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Denver Nuggets forward Wilson Chandler (21) against the Phoenix Suns at Talking Stick Resort Arena. The Nuggets defeated the Suns 118-114. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Nov 27, 2016; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Denver Nuggets forward Wilson Chandler (21) against the Phoenix Suns at Talking Stick Resort Arena. The Nuggets defeated the Suns 118-114. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

 Wilson Chandler:

Chandler probably hasn’t been undervalued or unsung as such, as most Nuggets fans will be quick to point out his importance during the start of the season before Jokic’s explosion.

However, in recent times, Chandler has taken a step back from the limelight, yet always adds an honorable stat line and great scoring prowess that the team would essentially be lost without.

At 15.5 points per game, ‘Ill Will’ is the second leading scorer in the team, often coming off the bench.

If the team are to continue this impressive run then Chandler’s scoring ability will be vital to the team, especially if ‘The Joker’ goes down again.

Oct 30, 2015; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Nuggets forward Darrell Arthur (00) shoots the ball during the second half against the Minnesota Timberwolves at Pepsi Center. The Timberwolves won 95-78. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

Oct 30, 2015; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Nuggets forward Darrell Arthur (00) shoots the ball during the second half against the Minnesota Timberwolves at Pepsi Center. The Timberwolves won 95-78. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

 Darrell Arthur:

In limited minutes, Arthur has been both professional and productive when entering the court for the Nuggets.

Shooting a career-high percentage (51.7%) from the three, DA has been a useful weapon for Malone deploy as well as offering experience and a respectable defensive game.

The seven-year pro has proved that when given extended time on the court, he will have an output and is extremely efficient.

Case and point against Utah when the forward added 16 points off 5-7 shooting in a rare plus-twenty minute outing.

In a time where players may begin to feel fatigue or become victims of injuries, players like Arthur will be invaluable to the Nuggets depth and rotation.

Heading into the latter stages of the season, the Nuggets’ depth with continue to be imperative for the team’s success. And with each game becoming more and more important, hopefully these un-hailed stars will continue to step up when their number is called.
So, that was a few of our key undervalued players as of late, but who’s been your favorite and most unsung Nuggets player during this eventful season?

let us know in the comment section below or tweet us at @Nugg_Love.

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