NBA Christmas: A gift for each team’s wish list in 2018

Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images /
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Photo by Garrett Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images /

Denver Nuggets: A return to full health

It’s pretty remarkable the Denver Nuggets have risen to the top spot in the Western Conference standings despite the injury woes they’ve faced early on. Last year, Paul Millsap missing half the season was a crutch for falling short of the playoffs on the last night of the regular season.

This year, despite Will Barton missing 28 games, Millsap missing five and expected to miss another 3-5 weeks, and Gary Harris missing nine games and expected to be sidelined for another 2-3 weeks, the Nuggets have the second-best record in the NBA, the second-best point differential out West, a top-10 defense and offense, and have won 11 of their last 13 games.

It’s scary what Nikola Jokic, Jamal Murray and an improved Denver bench are doing right now. Just imagine what this team will be capable of if Millsap, Harris, Barton, Isaiah Thomas and — God forbid — Michael Porter Jr. can actually get healthy and shake that rust off.