Emmanuel “Negative Rookie Win-Shares” Mudiay has bumped up the quality of his play in his third season now that a certain Jameer Nelson isn’t hanging around, stealing minutes and ruining Mudiay’s career. If the Nuggets are going to be good this year, there’s no choice but for Mudiay to step it up, because he’s either the starter or he’s the backup. The only other “point guard” (really combo guard) on the roster is Jamal Murray. There are no more veterans waiting out there to enter the game when Mudiay decides to suck. D.J. Augustin isn’t walking through that door to bail anybody out.
When Mudiay was collecting a stretch of DNP-CD’s last season, I honestly thought it might be over for him. Seventh-overall picks in their second year rarely get benched so thoroughly that they don’t even enter the game. It’s a bad sign when one is deemed so useless by his coach. But Mudiay persevered, and now I am comfortable in saying that he’s not the worst player picked in the top ten of that draft. Mario Hezonja, Stanley Johnson, and Justise Winslow are all probably worse. Come at me.