NBA insider Brian Geltzeiler reveals how Denver Nuggets, with a healthy Jamal Murray, and not the Los Angeles Lakers are the best team in the Western Conference.
In the past 2020-2021 NBA season, the Los Angeles Lakers definitely had the most unexpected campaign. Entering the regular season, LeBron James and co were heavily favoured to win their 2nd consecutive title. However, with all the injuries and health & safety protocols, the Lakers stumbled down in the standings, having to play the newly-added play-in tournament, only to suffer an early playoffs exit.
A roster change was inevitable. And as expected, LAL made quite a few changes on their roster this offseason. Apart from acquiring 2017 MVP Russell Westbrook in a blockbuster sign-and-trade deal, the front office even managed to add veterans Carmelo Anthony, Trevor Ariza, Dwight Howard, Wayne Ellington, Kent Bazemore and Rajon Rondo on the squad.
With the team filled with future Hall-Of-Famers and well-experienced veterans, the Lakers, are already one of the strong contenders to lift the 2022 Larry O’Brien trophy. While many believe that behind the LeBron, Davis and Westbrook trio, the Lakers are the best team in the West, NBA Analyst Brian Geltzeiler has a rather different opinion.
According to Brian Geltzeiler, it is not the Los Angeles Lakers who are the best team in the West. And, surprisingly, it’s not even Kawhi Leonard’s Clippers, Chris Paul’s Suns or Donovan Mitchell’s Jazz. As per the analyst, Nikola Jokic and the Denver Nuggets are the best team in the West, provided Denver has a healthy Jamal Murray on their squad.
NBA analyst Brian Geltzeiler reveals how a healthy Denver Nuggets is the best team in the Western Conference
In his recent appearance on the “SiriusXM NBA Radio” podcast, Brian explained how the 2021 MVP and his team are the biggest threat to the Lakers keeping them from going to the NBA Finals.
“The single biggest threat keeping the Lakers from going to the NBA finals in my opinion, all due respect to the Phoenix Suns who did it last year, is Nikola Jokic and the Denver Nuggets.
Because if Denver gets Murray back healthy at any point in time before the playoffs, they are the best team in the west even with everything the Lakers did. With Murray, Denver is the best team in the West.
I think the Lakers look at that and say ‘you know what, we are going to need some bodies to roll at Nikola Jokic’. Yes, we have Dwight Howard… We don’t want that to be stuck on Anthony Davis. Yes, we have Marc Gasol, but Marc Gasol is a little long in the tooth.
I think Jokic and Denver is going to be their biggest threat here. You bring Jamal Murray back to this team, wow, does that team become good.”
“With Murray, Denver is the best team in the West.”@hoopscritic tells @SamMitchellNBA why despite the Lakers adding several big men this off season, Nikola Jokic and the @Nuggets pose the biggest barrier for the Lakers in the Western Conference. #MileHighBasketball pic.twitter.com/DWFR1XtCET
— SiriusXM NBA Radio (@SiriusXMNBA) September 5, 2021
No doubt, Denver Nuggets are a great squad. But for them to contain the star-studded Lakers and prevent them from entering the NBA Finals, it will surely be a challenge of huge difficulty.