Denver Nuggets are a rookie striker Michael Porter Jr. His raw attacking talent flashed in the first half of Game 4 on Wednesday against the Los Angeles Clippers, using his size to score inside and smooth passes to shoot the long-winged Los Angeles defenders on his way to 15 points in a 5 of 6 shot.
He finished the match with 15 points, paying 5 out of 8.
With the Clippers winning 96-85 to advance 3-1 in the Western Conference semi-final series, with scoring difficulties plaguing the Nuggets in the second half, Porter had little explanation as to why he was unable to continue the scoring game.
“I just didn’t touch the ball,” he said. “They didn’t do anything differently.”
According to data from Second Spectrum, Porter had 25 touches in the first half, and was third on the team behind the stars Nikola Gokic And Beauty Murray. In the second half, Porter only had 12 touches, the seventh in the team.
“This is due to the call-up,” Porter said. “The coaches and their hands want to put the ball in.” “We kept going [Jokic] And [Murray] They are two great players, but I think in order to beat them, we need to involve more players. We have to move the ball a little better. We cannot speculate on this team. “
Porter built on a strong Game 3, when he scored 18 points in 23 minutes, including a confirmed poster Montrezel Harel. In Game 4, he played 34 minutes and was on the ground to close the match in Lake Buena Vista, Florida.
It’s no secret that the Denver attack passes through Jokic and Murray, one of the best pick-and-roll groups in the league. With Spectrum Two data, Murray and Jukic collected 175.5 touches per game this season, the second most touches by any teammate in the past five seasons. The only duo with more: Jokic and Murray last season.
But with his size and scoring ability, Porter is a potential X factor for the Nuggets. And even though he is a beginner, he feels comfortable declaring that he wants to be more involved.
“I think if I’m going to be there on the ground playing for long minutes, I think I should express that,” he said. “I’ll probably talk to the coaches and tell them what I see on the ground just to tell them, look, they know what we’re doing. We have to play with the ball. We have a lot of players who can play basketball and the score, so we have to involve more players.”
With a 3–1 defeat, the Nuggets were in familiar territory, having returned from the same deficit in the opening round against the Utah Jazz. Coach Mike Malone said they could benefit from that experience, meaning winning the next match in front of them. But he also admitted that the clippers are a different match from jazz.
“The same message will be what it was against Utah,” Malone said. “It wasn’t that we should go back and win three games. It was, let’s win game 5. And then, let’s win one by one. Let’s win 6 and then win 7. We did. He’s a different opponent. It’s a very talented and deep team, but I think that We have confidence to be a flexible group and to be a team. When we wrote off everyone, we found a way. “