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Report: First-round pick Jusuf Nurkic unlikely to join Nuggets next season

Jul 3, 2014, 4:00 PM EDT

The Denver Nuggets had arguably the NBA’s best draft this year, acquiring Arron Afflalo on the cheap and trading down to get Jusuf Nurkic and Gary Harris.

Nurkic is an intriguing center with legit size and post skills. He lacks polish, but he’s still young. There’s plenty of time for him to grow.

Just maybe not in Denver next season.

David Pick of

The Nuggets can contribute $600,000 for Nurkic’s buyout without it counting against team salary. Denver, if it structured Nurkic’s contract properly, could also immediately kick in another $2,661,360.

However that additional money would come out of Nurkic’s contract during the next two seasons. You can see why he might rather remain overseas than take a pay cut to join the NBA sooner.

The Nuggets might not mind, either.

They already have JaVale McGee and Timofey Mozgov under contract. Nurkic would add nice depth – they’ll need a third center from elsewhere now – but he can probably get more playing time and better develop this way.

  1. nickjackalson - Jul 3, 2014 at 4:13 PM

    Nah..if players were developed better overseas, wouldn´t we send our top prospects there? I call nonsense
    He´s a stash, that´s all

    • genericcommenter - Jul 3, 2014 at 4:24 PM

      Yeah, we send late 2nd rounders there- never to return.

    • Gordon - Jul 3, 2014 at 4:28 PM


    • cowboysfaninbuffalove - Jul 3, 2014 at 5:11 PM

      Or the nugs have a deep roster and he can get playing time overseas and when they lose Mcgee or mozgov they’ll have nurkic waiting

  2. zinger92 - Jul 3, 2014 at 6:05 PM

    Coming from a Sixers fan, welcome to the club, Nuggets.

    • rushbacker - Jul 3, 2014 at 6:21 PM

      Actually, there’s a difference between blatantly tanking and having half your roster get hurt. The Nugs are a playoff team if Lawson and Faried stay healthy all year.

      • biasedhomer - Jul 3, 2014 at 8:28 PM

        You completely missed the point…

        Heard of Saric?

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