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  • Writer's pictureDaniel Palmore

Why the Nuggets are Easy to Root For

Game six between the Miami Heat and Boston Celtics tips off tonight. Miami is trying to close out the Celtics, and Boston is trying to become the first team to rally from a 3-0 deficit in NBA history. No matter who wins this series, they will play Denver in the NBA Finals.

The Nuggets have gone through a ton of adversity to reach the biggest stage in basketball and NBA fans around the world should be rooting for them in the finals. Unless of course, you're a Heat fan or Celtics fan and there's a chance you'll be playing them.

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The Nuggets are making their first finals appearance in franchise history and the stars that have lead them there are homegrown players. Denver drafted two-time MVP Nikola Jokić with 41st pick in the 2014 draft and when his selection was made, it wasn't even announced on TV because a Taco Bell commercial was playing in the background.

The Joker wasn't even guaranteed to be Denver's big man of the future as the team was deciding between him and Jusuf Nurkić. The Nuggets stuck with Jokić and it has certainly paid off. The Joker is a five-time All-Star, two-time NBA MVP, a Western Conference Finals MVP and now has a chance to add a championship and Finals MVP to his resume.

Throughout these playoffs, Jokić has been dominant averaging 30 ppg, 13 rebounds and 10 assists. The greatest passing big man of all time will look to dominate in the NBA Finals to bring Denver its first championship.

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The Nuggets would also not be in the finals without Jamal Murray, who was drafted by Denver in the first round with the seventh pick in 2016. While his numbers in the regular season don't jump off the screen, Murray reaches another level of play in the postseason. Fans saw this in the bubble and in this year's playoffs, Jamal Murray is putting up nearly 28 ppg, six assists and six rebounds. He was key in several moments against the Lakers in the conference finals.

This is Murray's first postseason since returning from a torn acl and it looks like he hasn't lost a step when it comes to performing on the biggest stages. It's not just Jokić and Murray that make the Nuggets so good. Other players such as Michael Porter Jr., drafted by the team in 2018 have been making impact plays all postseason long. Michael Malone has been the head coach of the Nuggets since 2015 and has seen all the ups and downs Denver has gone through.

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NBA fans should feel good that the teams that are building championship contenders through drafting and developing players have been having success over the last few years. The Bucks won the title in 2021 after going through a lot of adversity, the Warriors' title team last year consisted of mostly stars the team drafted and same with the Celtics and Heat.

The Nuggets in particular however, have come up short and battled it out in the playoffs countless times over the years, and have finally broken through. If the Nuggets can pull off a title this year, it will be another example that if things go right, you can still win a championship by drafting and developing your stars.

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