Northwest Notes: Braun, Murray, Lillard, Towns

Christian Braun‘s playing time has diminished since the Nuggets signed veteran point guard Reggie Jackson. Braun may warrant a return to the second unit, considering his performance on Sunday against Brooklyn, Harrison Wind of writes. Braun had seven points, three rebounds and an assist in 12 minutes. Braun is also one of the team’s better defenders, Wind adds, and got an endorsement from the team’s franchise player.

“He was good. I actually told him, not just his energy, he actually played really good,” Nuggets center Nikola Jokic said of the first-round pick out of Kansas. “He had good minutes. He was talking on the floor. He was running correct. Energy, you need to have energy when you play, especially him.”

We have more from the Northwest Division:

  • Jamal Murray departed the Nuggets’ loss to the Nets in the third quarter on Sunday due to left knee soreness. However, a source told the Denver Post’s Mike Singer (Twitter link) that Murray was “fine.”
  • Damian Lillard missed Sunday’s game with calf tightness but coach Chauncey Billups was still stunned by how poorly the Trail Blazers played in a loss to New Orleans, Aaron Fentress of The Oregonian writes. Portland trailed by as much as 39 points to the Pelicans. “It doesn’t make a lot of sense to me either, knowing how pivotal this game is,” he said. “That team was very short-handed. That team was playing on the back-to-back. That team was very desperate.”
  • A good sign for the Timberwolves: Karl-Anthony Towns was spotted in a practice uniform putting up shots at the end of the team’s shootaround in Atlanta on Monday, Chris Hine of the Minneapolis Star Tribune tweets. A calf strain has kept the star big man on the shelf since November 28.
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