Nuggets Notes: Murray, Deadline Approach, Jokic, Gordon

Jamal Murray may be the most accomplished active player to never make an All-Star team. The Nuggets guard was passed over against last week when the Western Conference reserves were announced.

Murray said he’ll draw added motivation from the latest snub, according to Bennett Durando of the Denver Post.

“Yeah, of course, but there’s multiple players in the league that should be All-Stars (who aren’t), you know what I’m saying?” Murray said. (De’Aaron) Fox wasn’t an All-Star. There’s somebody else. Trae (Young) wasn’t an All-Star. So … what do you want me to do now? I think you guys have seen me play at a pretty high level against those same guys who are All-Stars.”

Murray is averaging 21.0 points and 6.6 assists per game for the defending champions. He has missed 14 contests due to injury but coach Michael Malone said that shouldn’t have prevented him from being selected.

“Plenty of guys make it that have missed games,” Malone said. “And whether Jamal uses that as motivation or not, we’ll see. But I think he’s motivated in just helping this team win.”

We have more of the Nuggets:

  • Denver’s front office is monitoring the market for frontcourt depth and bench scoring but the Nuggets aren’t expected to make any major moves and could stand pat, according to Durando. Malone says the front office isn’t desperate to make a deal. Calvin (Booth) and his staff, I’m sure, are fielding phone calls. But I can’t imagine we’re actively calling many teams right now,” Malone said. “Are we satisfied? No. I think you always have to be responsible enough to look within and say, ‘Hey, can we do anything that makes us better?’ That’s always a question you have to ask. But knowing Calvin and the brief conversations we’ve had, there is nothing where Calvin’s on the phone, burning up the phone lines to 29 other teams.”
  • After getting a night off last Wednesday, Nikola Jokic has been his usual dominant self since then. He racked up 27 points, 22 rebounds, 12 assists and two blocks against the Trail Blazers on Friday, then followed that up with a 29-point, eight-rebound, seven-assist performance against Portland on Sunday. Denver won both games by double-digits. “I like that we are playing with the same effort,” Jokic told Durando.
  • Aaron Gordon is often on the receiving end of Jokic’s creative and deft passes. Gordon has a simple explanation why they work so well together, as Durando relays. “That’s the best passer in the business,” he said. “I’ve got the best hands in the business.”
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