His Future In Denver Aside, Iguodala Should Help Nuggets Thrive

HANG TIME NEW JERSEY – A day after Andrew Bynum talked about staying long-term in Philadelphia, the other All-Star in the Dwight Howard trade did the same in Denver.

“We aren’t coming in to this thinking this is just a one year deal,” Andre Iguodala said at his introductory news conference on Thursday. “We are looking to the future and definitely looking ahead looking to see how we can go forward so this isn’t a quick stop for me.

“This would be a great place for me to have some great years ahead of me and possibly ending my career here.”

Iguodala is under contract for the next two years, but with an early termination option that can make him a free agent next summer. Contract extension talks don’t need to take place for a while, but there’s reason for Denver to be excited about some continuity with a young and talented core, as Benjamin Hochman of the Denver Post writes

Ujiri already has said he wants to sign point guard Ty Lawson to a long-term deal, and Lawson told The Denver Post last May that he was excited about that possibility. If Ujiri and team president Josh Kroenke can re-sign their backcourt, that will give Denver a thrilling nucleus going forward, knowing small forwards Danilo Gallinari and Wilson Chandler and center JaVale McGee are already signed for years to come. Meanwhile, power forward Kenneth Faried is entering the second season of his rookie contract.

“My focus,” Iguodala said, “is to help our team, not only to go out there and to play at the best of our abilities, but to believe that we’re going to make ourselves in contention to be at the top of the West. No matter what anybody else says, we are going to go out there and play for one thing and that is a championship.”

Come November, we’ll see just how well Iguodala fits with his new team. But given his strengths and the Nuggets’ weaknesses, he’ll clearly help.

The Nuggets were a poor defensive team last season, ranking 19th by allowing 103.4 points per 100 possessions. Iguodala, of course, is maybe the best perimeter defender in the league. Over the last two seasons, the Sixers were much better defensively when he was on the floor…

Sixers efficiency, last two seasons

Iguodala on/off MIN Pace OffRtg DefRtg NetRtg +/-
On floor 4,677 93.0 103.0 98.2 4.7 +379
Off floor 2,492 93.1 103.1 103.1 0.0 +24

Pace = Possessions per 48 minutes
OffRtg = Points scored per 100 possessions
DefRtg = Points allowed per 100 possessions
NetRtg = Point differential per 100 possessions

When Iguodala was on the floor, the Sixers were a better defensive team in every aspect. Their opponents shot worse from 2-point range and 3-point range, while turning the ball more often, getting to the free throw line less, and grabbing fewer offensive rebounds.

The Nuggets did a decent job of forcing turnovers, rebounding and keeping their opponents off the line last season. But they ranked 20th in opponent 2-point percentage and dead last in opponent 3-point percentage. In fact, they allowed 276 more points (4.2 per game) from beyond the arc than any other team in the league.

Iguodala’s length (especially at the shooting guard position), athleticism and willingness to work defensively will certainly help the Nuggets defend the 3-point line. And they could be one of the most improved defensive teams in the league next season.

Offensively, the Nuggets’ biggest weakness was also at the 3-point line, ranking 24th at 33.2 percent from beyond the arc last season. Iguodala had his best 3-point shooting season last year, connecting on 39.4 percent of his shots from beyond the arc. But the guy he’s replacing, Arron Afflalo, had his worst 3-point shooting season since his rookie year, and still shot better (39.8 percent) than Iguodala.

Iguodala should also flourish in transition with the Nuggets, who led the league with 20.2 fast break points per 100 possessions last season. Afflalo ranked ninth in the league with 244 fast-break points (43 more than Iguodala), but Iguodala is a better finisher at the rim. In fact, among 213 players who attempted at least 100 shots from the restricted area last season, Iguodala ranked fifth, shooting them at 71.8 percent. Afflalo ranked 56th at 63.6 percent.

So we’ll have to see just how well Iguodala fits in offensively. Improvement from the free throw line would certainly help. But there’s no doubt that he’ll make a big difference the other end of the floor, where the Nuggets needed help most.

62 Comments

  1. sampph says:

    Iguodala can accommodate well in the offensive line. He is a strong player with experience and sense of play. Hopefully a good season for the Nuggets

  2. Denver fan says:

    i got den vs okc in conf finals

  3. Denver fan says:

    the nuggets are at the top of the west. i say there are either no 1 or no 2. okc is still the team to beat in the west (if james harden leaves i wonder who going to be the thunder third scorer) and denver is right behind them. since the nuggets trade nene harrington and affalo away, they have enought money to sign lawson and a.i to long term deals and sign an another big free agent (they also sign anthony randolph too). the lakers are old and dont have a bench to compete with a team like denver that is deep at every position. kobe is not getting any younger nor is steve nash (he is also not a great defender not even good…guards like ty lawson westbrook and tony parker going to eat him alive, not to mention CP3). metta world peace is not the same defender he was when he came to the lakers (durant showed that in playoffs last year…blew behind him every time or shot over him). dwight have issues about his back and he going to miss the start of the season and pau gasol is soft (i thought bynum and dwight is a better match to me and just look at the highlights of when blake griffin posterized gasol twice in one game). the spurs are getting old. the clippers have a good team. they added lamar odom and grant hill to help there bench. the memphis grizzlies have a good young team and minnesota has improve their team also. the suns are not the team they used to be when they had nash and amar’e. the houston rockets can make some noise in the west. the jazz is in a rebuilding stage. i hornets is in a rebuilding stage but i give them at least two years before they become a very good team. they started off right by drafting anthony davis and austin rivers.

    western conference standings
    1. okc 2. den 3. clippers 4. lakers 5. spurs 6. grizzlies 7. wolves 8. houston/ jazz/ warriors/ suns

  4. Anonymous says:

    East Playoffs List
    1. Boston
    2. Miami
    3 New York
    4.New Jersey
    5. Philadelphia
    6. Indiana
    7. Milwaukee
    8. Washington

    West Playoffs list
    1.OKLAHOMA
    2.Los Angeles Laklers
    3.Los Angeles Clippers
    4.San Antonio
    5.Denver
    6.Utah
    7.New Orleans
    8.Grizzlies

  5. serbs forever says:

    east: 1miami 2nets 3boston 4pacers 5knicks 6philly 7atlanta 8bulls
    west:1okc 2LA 3clippers 4spurs 5memphis 6denver 7t-wolves 8jazz

  6. 2Distraction says:

    East: 1. Boston 2. Miami 3. NYC 4. Nets 5. Sixers 6. Pacers 7. Raptors 8. Bucks or Hawks
    West: 1. Spurs 2. Okc 3. LAL 4. LAC 5. Denver 6. Grizzlies 7. Hornets 8. Jazz

  7. jawoparin says:

    i was looking for lbj’s comment here. LOL! ^^

  8. poopon says:

    will the lakers and spurs get better with age? they have fallen off in the playoffs and regular season the last couple years. ginobli parker duncan all are a year older, so are jamison nash bryant and gasol. as kobe goes so go the lakers, so we’ll see about them, i think the nuggets will put the fear of God into them. it’ll be good for the nuggets bigs to have to go up against howard, and it’ll be good for iguodala to go up against kobe. nuggs room for improvement is a lot larger than other teams. they’ve only recently put the pieces in place to play a super up-tempo style. the youth on the nuggs is more mature than a lot of teams veterns.

  9. poopon says:

    the nuggs will be #2 to the thunder, the lakers and spurs will be left in a cloud of dust. i could see the nuggs winning some games by 50+ points because they’re extraordanarily deep from top to bottom. they have one player over 30=andre miller. they have the ability to put out some defense in situations at the end of games too.

  10. 17,6 says:

    well said kc hahahaha

  11. Joseph_03 says:

    The Nuggets all of a sudden are good on almost every position. They aren’t good enough though to vie for a championship but at least a superstar away from being one. Nonetheless, the current roster with their very capable coaching staff is sort of scary, they have the makings of a deadly team, one that can upset any contender in the playoffs in a 7 game series.

    Imagine if this team had Dirk or Aldridge without losing any of its current players? I’m not saying they can get either of the two, but if they had a player of such a caliber this article will be talking Denver as a possible contender.

  12. underdog says:

    east: 1 heat, 2 celtics, 3 bulls, 4 sixers, 5 knicks, 6 nets, 7 pacers, 8 wizards/hawks
    East champs: Celtics

    west: 1 spurs, 2 thunder, 3 lakers, 4 clippers, 5 nuggets, 6 grizzlies, 7-8 warriors/twolves/
    suns/jazz/hornets
    West champs: Lakers

    2013 Champs: Celtics

  13. bolbol says:

    MCGEE IS THE KEY FOR DENVER SUCCESS THIS SEASON..

  14. Basketball Phenom says:

    East Standings: 1.Miami 2.Knicks 3.Celtics 4.Bulls 5.Nets 6.Pacers 7.Sixers 8.Raptors 9.Bucks
    West Standings: 1.Lakers 2.Thunder 3.Spurs 4.Nuggets 5.Clippers 6.WGrizzlies 7.Mavericks 8.TimberWolves 9.Jazz or Warriors

    • prince says:

      1. Miami
      2. Boston
      3, Nets
      4. Pacers
      5. Sixers
      6. Knicks
      7. Bulls
      8. Bucks

      1. Lakers
      2. Thunder
      3. Clppers
      4. Grizzlies
      5 Nuggets
      6.Jazz
      7. Spurs
      8. Mavericks

    • Fave says:

      It’s funny how the Atlantic division use to be the worst division but, this season will be the toughest one. But c’mon Basketball Phenom you have the whole Atlantic division in the East Playoffs (Knicks, Celtics, Nets, Sixers & Raptors) lol

  15. A says:

    i cant believe 39.8 vs 39.4 is worth mentioning
    sounds to me like:
    SAME PERCENTAGE

  16. Elan Avery says:

    I don’t know but while watching Iguodala in the video, Vito Corleone comes to mind..
    Maybe because of the puffy cheeks…

  17. sixers fan says:

    Sorry Nuggets fans…while I’ll miss Iggy you’re not getting quite the superstar you think you are.

  18. SUN says:

    galo n lawson will b the go to scorers late in the games. With all the talent they have they cud be one of the top four teams in the west and in a couple years a powerhouse in the west along with ock. As long as their defense improves
    This years standings wud b
    1.Lakers 2.Okc 3.Spurs(first three vary)4.Nuggets 5.Memphis 6.Clippers 7.Dallas 8.Minnesota
    but who knows what will happen lets just watch the exciting new season and find out!

  19. Jordan says:

    I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again. Iggy will be a great fit for the Nuggets. They play unselfish basketball and Iggy is an unselfish player. Everything he does wil already complement the Nuggets and their game plan. Keeping Iggy would be the best decision to make.

  20. Wes says:

    Denver will be better on the defensive end and close to the same on the offensive end. Hardly believe they are not still looking for SG/PF help. They have some nice trade material plus the trade exception.

  21. W/E says:

    Still denver has no chance vs the 4 top teams of the west

  22. Tiao says:

    dont fool yourself, its business, money, not about sports

  23. denver solid says:

    Excited about this Denver move..another team player who’s attitude fits perfectly with Coach Karl system. Next season is BIG for my team..watch out:)

  24. LBJFAN4LYEF says:

    GOOD JOB IGGY, YOU KNOW YOU AND JAVALE MCGEE WANTS TO GO DOWN TO SOUTH BEACH TO WIN THAT CHAMPIONSHIP BABY!!

    PG WADE
    SG IGGY
    SF LEBRON JAMES
    PF CHRIS BOSH
    JAVALE MCGEE

    2013 YEA BABY!!!

    • aussieaussieaussie says:

      javale resigned for 4 yrs so keep dreaming brah and ig wouldnt sign for vets min which is all heat have

  25. Maori says:

    Only question is whos going to score? Iggy only averages 10-15pts max. Javell and Faried can’t score besides put backs off misses. So all the pressure will be on Lawson and Gallinari. Teams know Gallinari only shoots 3pt so if they shut him down then its all on Lawson. They relied alot on Al Harrington last year to score, so should be interesting.

  26. KIWI says:

    “McGee with the huge block! picked up by Miller who lobs to Iguadola for the THUNDEROUS FINISH!! ..cant wait to see it

  27. la la land says:

    I agree i think they will be a good team. But they will struggle against SA and OKC. But I think they are now the 4th best team in the conference

  28. KnickerBocker says:

    Ty Lawson and iggy in the back thats a quick backourt. with TY as a spot up shooter and iggy a quick,defensive, transition player. Galo ,Candler,Faried who starts.and Javale Conference finals nuggets lakers

    • Angelo says:

      So Lawson, Iggy, Gallinari, Faried, McGee beats Westbrook, Harden, KD, Ibaka, Perk?

      • boak says:

        maybe not but one thing’s for sure, with iggy now on denver, denver wud be a better team this season

    • Uguysridiots says:

      The Nuggets are a 5 seed at best, and u realize lakers and nuggets are in the same confernece and cant play each other in the finals right?

      • Uguysridiotsisanidiot says:

        But they can play in the conference finals, which is what was said. Learn to spell and it might help you read better too…

    • phillip says:

      People forget denver were 2 in west one third into the season last year, then injuries came and a trade and they still finished 6th. The Nuggets will have the chance to finish in the top 3 in the west with a healthy roster, if they finish 1 or 2 they avoid one of the big guns( apparently Lakers and definately Thunder) until Conference finals, then anything can happen. I think Thunder will finish 1, but 2 will be Denver or the Clips, Lakers will need alot of luck with health ( how many games does Howard miss) and officiating….. well that part should be fine. Lakers, and you heard it here first I’m predicting finish……………..
      1- OKC 2 -Nuggets 3- Clips 4- SAS 5- MEM 6- LAL 7- MIN 8- Take your pick of Dallas, GSW, Utah.

  29. SUN says:

    cant wait to see how iggy does is denver this new season is looking pretty exciting. Hope he does great with them

  30. Great player, I hope he finds his role on this team because Karl is a good coach. He even had Javell McGee playing better lol.

  31. Source says:

    Iggy is also considering the bulls after one season with the Denver

  32. justafan says:

    ummm alx you didnt even put brooklyn in your top 9 in the east?? you acually have orlando as a possible 8 seed lolz

  33. kamote says:

    No star power to win a championship… unless they can pull-off a 2004-Detroit team.

  34. kc says:

    That makes two A.I.s going from Philly to Denver.

  35. alx says:

    East standings1:Miami -2:nyk 3: Indiana 4:philly 5: Boston 6: Chicago 7: Atlanta 8: bucks 9 raptors or Orlando. West standing 1 okc 2 lal 3 spurs 4 lac 5 Memphis 6 denver 7 denver 8 Houston or golden state

  36. Bane says:

    At first I was little surprised at trade, cause Denver already has good small forwards, but then again having in mind Iggy’s superior athleticism, he could play SG and even have advantage cause of his size. Good move Denver!

    • Denver can go deep playoffs says:

      with this squad. I’m lookin at the possible starters: McGee (C), Gallinari (PF), Faried, Iggy, Lawson – and Chandler, Miller, Brewer, Koufos, Mozgov in the rotation … i mean, that team will trouble many in the West at playoff time – just as they did LaLa Land the season just past.

      • Anand says:

        Gallinari is a SF and Faried will be the starting PF. and LOL Koufos? I doubt he’s gonna make a big crack in the rotation

  37. Bizman23 says:

    lbj is funny

  38. scott the magician says:

    Love Igyy…wish he would shoot more but hes a team guy and a guy every single player in the elague would want to play with.
    when hes done here i hope he joins my mens league team (AAA division ofcourse, 3time defending champs) but whos bragging…
    we got a starting spot for you IG!!!

  39. Bubba chub says:

    yeah he will be improve their defense and the Nuggets can have a offensive and Defensive duo of Lawson and Iguodala who would have two different responsibility

  40. ahhhh says:

    Shaddap!

  41. shaddap aimed at lbj says:

    … of course