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Nuggets-Raptors Grades: Denver 1, Canada 0

Andre Simone Avatar
December 5, 2018

The Denver Nuggets had their biggest win of the season in Toronto, a 106-103 win over the Eastern Conference-leading Raptors.

We grade every performance from the Nuggets with our Dynamic Player Rating (DPR), which take into account 12 different statistical factors.

Note: for DPRs that are lacking context, our beat reporters are offering their scout’s grade.

Nikola Jokic (A-) 81.17 — Jokic was amazing, leading all Nuggets in points (23), assists (15), rebounds (11), offensive rebounds (4), was tied for the lead in steals with two, and had the best plus-minus of anyone on the court. It was a special performance from Jokic that included an incredible triple-double.

As if that wasn’t enough, his 69 percent TS% was off the charts and his DRtg of 100 was outstanding as well. His usage rating wasn’t all that high either, showing how efficient he was. Aside from his 35-11-11 triple-double against the Phoenix Suns in late October, this was by far his best game of the year.

Jamal Murray (C+) 63.75 — Murray roughed it out in this one, with 21 hard fought points, seven boards, and eight assists in 40 minutes. With Gary Harris injured he had to shoulder more of the load and did so admirably. His grade was lowered by seven turnovers and an eFG% below 50 plus a really low ORtg, but the stats don’t tell the whole story here.

Scout’s Grade (B) — Murray was solid, not spectacular. He filled up the box score but struggled to hold onto the ball. Besides the turnovers, it was a nice homecoming performance from Murray, who grew up in Canada.

Paul Millsap (C-) 50.80 — Millsap’s game was defined by his defense and rebounding with eight boards and a DRtg of 101. It was exactly what the Nuggets needed in a hostile environment against the gritty Raptors. His offensive numbers hurt his DPR score but he deserves a passing grade regardless.

Juancho Hernangomez (C+) 61.21 — Scoring 15 points in 29 minutes and shooting it well from beyond the arc, Hernangomez played a big part in the Nuggets success. His DRtg was at 100, which is excellent, and he had a 54 percent eFG%, another excellent figure. He did have three turnovers and his ORtg was pretty low but this was another solid contribution from the Spaniard.

Scout’s Grade: (A-) — Hernangomez is giving something Denver needs within its starting lineup, especially if Harris misses extended time: shooting. He sunk three triples versus Toronto and was solid on the defensive end of the floor too, playing a role in some of the Nuggets’ clutch stops down the stretch. It was as good of a performance from Hernangomez as Denver could have asked for.

Malik Beasley (B) 70.69 — Beasly had to step up once Harris went down, playing 27 minutes and scoring an efficient 15 points while posting an eFG% of 93 percent. His ORtg of 179 was his third highest of the season against a stingy defensive opponent, and he finished a +11. A clutch performance for the wing who’s having a breakout season.

Scout’s Grade (A) — There’s not much else Beasley could have done to raise his grade in Toronto. He’s now 15 of his last 25 from three-point range and as always, was a solid contributor on the defensive end. He’ll likely play a 30-plus minute per game role over the remainder of Denver’s road trip if Harris misses an extended amount of time.

Monte Morris (D+) 47.82 — The Nuggets’ usually stable backup wasn’t his best in this one, as he struggled to find his shot and only had one assist in 22 minutes. Morris was also a -5 on the night. His GmSc of 1.4 was one of his lowest of the year and neither his defensive or offensive ratings were any good in an atypical outing.

Scout’s Grade (C+) — Morris didn’t pop off the screen like he’s done for most of this season. He also missed a bunch of the runners and midrange shots he’s hit with regularity this season. His start to the year raised the expectations that we have for him on a night-to-night basis, which is unfortunate but the new reality for the second-year guard.

Mason Plumlee (C-) 52.46 — This seemed like the type of game that played right into Plumlee’s hand, but Jokic was dealing, so Plumlee took a backseat. He didn’t do much on offense besides three offensive rebounds. His DRtg of 85 was elite and the best on the team, making a big impact despite only shooting 33 percent from the field.

Scout’s Grade (A) — Plumlee didn’t need to do much in Toronto with how Jokic was playing, but sometimes that’s when he’s at his best. Plumlee hooked up with Jokic on a nice alley-oop and pulled down eight rebounds in just 18 minutes. He also had two blocks.

Trey Lyles (D+) 49.05 — The other Canadian on the team didn’t fare as well as Murray, with only three points in 12 minutes and a -10 plus-minus. To his credit, Lyles had a 50 percent eFG% and had a DRtg of 98 despite his offensive struggles against the Raptors second unit.

Torrey Craig (C+) 64.79 — Craig came in and played tough in a game that stylistically suited him to perfection. It was also one of his better offensive games of the year, as he posted an ORtg of 148, easily his best of the season. Craig also had a perfect 100 percent eFG%. His DRtg of 102 wasn’t bad either as he added four boards and a steal in 17 minutes.

Scout’s Grade (A) — Craig filled in perfectly for Harris against the Raptors. He was active on the glass, corralling four rebounds (three offensive) in just 17 minutes. He also knocked down his open threes, going 2-3 from beyond the arc. Craig simply did his job. He could slide into Denver’s starting lineup Wednesday in Orlando.

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