With an infirmary that is always full, including Jamal Murray but also Michael Porter Jr. and PJ Dozier, plus the inevitable Covid cases, the Nuggets had to juggle to present a decent workforce in December.
Currently on a positive streak of four wins in five games, the Nuggets are finding color and they owe it in particular to the unexpected contribution of Davon Reed. This back passed by the college of Miami, drafted in the second round (32nd choice) by the Suns in 2017, is one of the new darlings of Mike Malone who appreciates his activity and his defensive involvement.
« Coach Malone has transformed my career »
« For a young player who is on his second ten-day contract with us, he shows that he has the level », Mike Malone attests to Mile High Sports. » I’ve been saying this from the summer league: Davon Reed is an NBA player. «
Already in the Denver squad at the start of the season, Davon Reed is not completely on uncharted territory in Colorado, he who was an essential player for the Gold in the G-League (15 points, 8 rebounds, 6 assists in 36 minutes ).
At 5 points, 3 rebounds, 1 assist and 1 interception in 17 minutes per game, it is not in the numbers that you should look for but rather in observing it on the field, with its defense and its engine in general, its constant activity, which caught the eye of Coach Malone.
And then, he is a « clean » player in that he is efficient on shots, with 51% success, including 7/16 at 3-points, but also with 11 assists, 11 interceptions and this with only 3 balls. lost …
“He transformed my career. Coach Malone is really the one who pushed me and my agent to come to training camp and be part of Grand Rapids Gold first, wait my turn and be ready to play for the Nuggets. . He has tremendous confidence in me since the moment I met him when he didn’t know me more than that. The fact that he saw my game as something that could stick with this team and this franchise, it changed my career. «
Holder twice in nine appearances, Davon Reed was notably decisive against the Clippers last Sunday, with 15 points at 6/8 on shots including 3/4 at 3-points but also a defensive stop clutch to prevent the equalization of Los Angeles (103-100).
Good to stay in Denver
« I like his confidence », resumes Mike Malone. “He looks really very comfortable on the pitch and he’s confident. I think it is fundamental. You have to believe that you have the level and he is convinced of it. «
At 26, and after two unrelated freelancing with the Suns (21 games in 2017-18) and with the Pacers (10 games in 2018-19), Davon Reed finally seems fit to make a real place for himself in an NBA workforce. His versatility and his accuracy in the game make him one of the barometers of the Nuggets in these troubled times.
“I’ve had some ups and downs in my career and some people have let me down along the way after early career injuries. For Coach Malone to believe in me and keep saying it is huge for me. I hope we will start to have everyone on the same wavelength to continue winning matches. «
The Nuggets would be looking for the best solution to keep Davon Reed for the season, with perhaps another « hardship exception », which would push Denver towards the luxury tax … It could be that another player (Markus Howard who is also injured at the moment or the Frenchy Petr Cornelie, even Bol Bol) is paying the price, as was the case in Chicago for the signing of Alfonzo McKinnie.
“Honestly, the ten day contract is never on my mind. I do not think about it. I’m here to play basketball with my team, for as long as I’m there. When I’m on the pitch I’m focused on the game and the game plan and I just want to win. Anything I can do to help, I am for. «