JaVale McGee is one of the most athletic centers in the game of basketball. He can run, jump, block, dunk, but he still has the “potential” when it should of already blossomed into production. He is the biggest question mark on the Nuggets roster right now, an investment that has yet to show any profit. JaVale McGee needs to get his game on track and be ready for the consequences if he doesn’t.
When traded for Nene Hilario in 2012, most people questioned the reasoning. Nene had been productive, but the emergence of Kenneth Faried seemed to be the end of Nene’s time in Denver. The arrival of McGee meant that George Karl was going to mentor him into one of the best centers in the league. He played alright, and that led to his contract extension, but the departure of George Karl meant a deceleration of his development. The stress fracture in his leg, causing him to miss all but four games of the 2013-2014 season, did little to help his progression. This leaves this season for McGee to show what he can do, or he will not be a Nugget for very long.
The problem that McGee has is consistency. He will send back a shot harder than you will ever see, then on the next play will miss a dunk or turn over the ball. He will pass the ball over his back to nobody, or will run back to defense when the team is still on offense. The look on George Karl‘s face was of pure embarrassment, as was the Denver Nuggets fans as McGee would forget he’s playing basketball and turns into a volleyball star as he spikes the ball, which would have been a great block except it was goaltending. He is the most inconsistent player in the NBA, something that he needs to fix.
He is a good basketball player, he has showing of it when he will throw down an amazing dunk, but people think of the mistakes more than they think of his successes. More often than not he will put down an ally-op, but the one that he misses is the one that will make the headlines, especially if the team losses. Although he is a good player, he still has the potential to be great.
McGee averaged 9.1 points, 4.8 rebounds, and 2.0 blocks in 18.1 minutes off the bench for George Karl. He barely got any better from the year before, and is still in the same boat as he was at the end of the season. He is not ready to start, which leaves the Nuggets in a hole at that position.
The only thing that will help JaVale McGee is himself. He has often been refered as the goofiest guy in the NBA, both on and off the court. The only thing that is consistent with him is that he is unpredictable. He likes to have fun, and that is what sports are all about when you are young, but when you are getting paid $44 million over four years, you better have fun by producing for the team and not acting a fool. The cure for his inconsistency is to study the game, increase his basketball IQ, and actively think during the game instead of acting so instinctively. He is the weakest link in the starting five, and he needs to step up in order for the Nuggets to have a successful season.