Western Notes: Porter Jr., Braun, Mitchell, Eason

Michael Porter Jr. has made 48.9% of his three-point attempts this season while shooting a high volume (7.8 per game). The Nuggets forward believes the pace is sustainable, as he told Mike Singer of the Denver Post. “Fifty percent (from) three, to me, is not an unrealistic number,” Porter said. “I’m not saying that that’s easy to do, but I missed a lot of shots that I feel like I should make, and I’m at 50%. … I think in high school I shot like 75% from three. Like, literally.”

We have more from the Western Division:

  • Nuggets rookie Christian Braun has guarded a wide variety of players in the first two weeks and held his ground, Sean Keeler of the Denver Post writes. The coaching staff has been impressed by the first-round pick. “He doesn’t blink. He doesn’t get rattled,” coach Michael Malone said. “He’s just really, you know, a Cool Hand Luke, calm, cool, collected … aggressive, drives and finishes. A fun kid to watch.” Braun is averaging 17.7 minutes off the bench.
  • The revamped Jazz have surprised a lot of people but not one of their former All-Stars. Donovan Mitchell says Utah still has plenty of talent, the Cavs guard told Steve Bulpett of Heavy.com. “They got hoopers,” Mitchell said. “I don’t know why everybody was so quick to write them off. I think they got phenomenal leaders in that locker room. Mike Conley is a phenomenal leader. Jordan Clarkson is a phenomenal leader. Then they got Collin Sexton and Lauri Markkanen, guys who can really go … Malik Beasley. Like, they’re just not some slump. They have guys that can really go.”
  • Tari Eason has brought a much-needed defensive mean streak to the Rockets, Kelly Iko of The Athletic writes. Eason, a rookie forward out of LSU, is averaging 16.8 minutes off the bench and one of his coaches draws a comparison to a well-known agitator. “He’s a prime example of a better Dennis Rodman,” Rockets lead assistant John Lucas said of the 17th overall pick. “That is a good fit for him. I have been trying to see who he plays like. You don’t have to run plays for him, but you can pencil in 16 to 18 points for him, and he is getting better. He is crashing the offensive glass. He is running the floor and getting steals.”
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