We know from past experience that Jusuf Nurkic doesn’t really like it when another center starts taking the minutes that he feels he’s earned. So, if there’s any risk at all to the Blazers’ signing of Enes Kanter off the scrap heap, it’s that. If the situation is sufficiently mismanaged both by coaching and by Nurkic himself, he could start pouting on the court and then demand a trade and then start a proxy feud with Kanter that never dies down.
I don’t think that’s going to happen this time. Even if Kanter starts earning more minutes, Nurkic knows that he’s got the starting center position on lock. There’s no way a newcomer can come in and take it away from him; he’s played too well this season. He’s been too vital to the Blazers’ success. And I think he’s mature enough to handle it if Kanter’s sudden presence on the roster means that Nurkic only gets 25 MPG going forward instead of 27.
Also, I just noticed that Nurkic only plays 27 minutes per game. Why is that? Does he have stamina issues or is this just a matter of Stotts trying to give everybody a fair share of minutes?