Porter Jr. and the Nuggets agreed to a five-year max extension worth $207 million.
Michael Porter Jr. has cashed in on a huge five-year, $207 million dollar extension with the Nuggets 😎 pic.twitter.com/1cu0BuFwJn
— Nuggets Nation (@NuggetsNationCP) September 29, 2021
While it is unlikely that Porter will end up receiving the full $207 million, this was still a huge leap of faith by the Nuggets.
However, it was a leap that they were forced to make.
It is rare that a small market team like Denver is able to sustain success like they have.
With an MVP-level talent in Nikola Jokic on the roster, they are forced to do some extra spending to give him a quality supporting cast.
Because Denver is not a marquee free agency destination, they have to take risks on players with high risk and high potential like Porter.
Denver set up their future big three with this move and we will break down all three members of the Nuggets’ core of the future.
The face of the franchise for the Nuggets is Jokic.
He is fresh off an an MVP award, making him the first recipient of the award in Nuggets history.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver presents Nikola Jokic with the 2020-2021 NBA MVP Award.
— The Athletic (@TheAthletic) June 9, 2021
Jokic is widely considered to be the best center in the NBA and Denver is doing everything in their power to keep him around for the long-term.
There are not many big men in NBA history that can do everything that Jokic does.
Last season, he nearly averaged a triple-double.
He is able to dominate in the post, shoot from outside, and be an elite distributor.
The fate of the Nuggets franchise will rest on the shoulders of Jokic.
As long as his supporting cast can remain healthy, the Nuggets will go as far as he will take them.
It would be very hard to believe that the Nuggets do not sneak in an NBA championship before Jokic retires as long as he remains with the team through his entire career.
The second member of the Nuggets’ big three is Jamal Murray.
Murray has the potential to be one of the best scorers in the entire league.
He is only 24 years old, however, he averaged 21.2 points through the regular season last year.
Murray came to the forefront of the league in the 2020 playoffs.
In the first round of the 2020 playoffs, against the Utah Jazz, Murray averaged an astounding 31.6 points per game.
This series featured two games in which Murray scored 50 points.
While he has yet to reach that peak again, there are few players in the league that could explode like that in a playoff series.
Murray suffered a very serious injury in the 2021 playoffs that could keep him sidelined for the 2021-2022 season.
It is not a guarantee that he will be the same player that he was before injury.
However, if he can fully recover, he will come back with the potential to be a league leader in scoring one day.
Michael Porter Jr.
The newest member of the big three is Porter.
He still has a lot to prove in the league, however, the sky is the limit in terms of his potential.
He has already missed an entire season due to injury.
Despite this, in the 2020-2021 season, he took huge steps in terms of growing as a player.
He nearly scored 10 more points and pulled in around three more rebounds than he did in his first year.
If he is able to continue his path of growth along with developing other parts of his game, Porter could end up being something truly great.
With Murray being sidelined, Porter will get to play the role of second option this year.
If he can step up and play this role well, it could mean great things for him in the future.