Through recent social media antics and major issues revealing themselves in the Phoenix Suns franchise, it appears that Eric Bledsoe is on his way out of Phoenix. Several teams, including Denver, Milwaukee, and New York, have expressed their interest in trading for the 27-year-old point guard. Several members of the sports media have thrown around other notion that Bledsoe should return to the team that drafted him, The Los Angeles Clippers. Whatever happens to Bledsoe, we as basketball fans can only wait and assume our own conclusions. In this inference, let's look at how Bledsoe would fit if he were to be traded to the Denver Nuggets.
It’s no question that a weak point in The Nuggets roster is their inexperienced back-court. Gary Harris, Jamal Murray, and Mudiay are nice pieces and all. However, none have seen a sizable amount of minutes in the NBA. This becomes more of a problem remembering Denver dropped Jameer Nelson this season eliminating all veteran value from the back-court.
Bledsoe helps a lot of the needs and problems The Nugs have. He is coming into his 8th year in the NBA and is still living in his late 20’s. This means Bledsoe brings valuable leadership while still being youthful enough to connect with the Nugs young core. The Nuggets point is still largely being run by Nikola Jokic, so Denver doesn’t desperately need a point guard that dishes out serious dimes. Bledsoe had his statistically best season last year in terms of points per game and assists per game, putting up 21.1 points and 6.3 assists a game in the 2016-17 season. Bledsoe has averaged at least 17 points per game the last 4 seasons and at least 20 the last 2 seasons. His potential to average about 20 points works well for The Nuggets fast pace offense and Denver’s artistry of ball movement so far this season. These all indicate Bledsoe could have a great spot for him in the Mile High City.
According to Bleacher Report, Phoenix is looking to trade Bledsoe for a young and talented player to grow with Devin Booker and Josh Jackson. If Denver has any pieces like this, it’s players like Emmanuel Mudiay, Jamal Murray, and Juancho Hernangomez. Denver has a good amount of players that are, in a way, expendable due to their need for minutes on a packed roster.
Anyone of the three players mentioned above, a player like Kenneth Faried, and maybe a pick has the potential to work out as a good trade for both Denver and Phoenix. The hard part is the Nuggets front office getting the best deal possible and keeping the fans happy. As Bledsoe has expressed he wants to leave and many teams are in talks for the Guard, it creates a fragile and awkward trade market.
At the beginning of the year, Zach Lowe released his yearly list of 32 crazy NBA predictions. In one of his first guesses, he argues “Phoenix trades Eric Bledsoe to (maybe) the Nuggets”. For a respected NBA annalist to suggest the idea, it can’t be too out of the question, right? Denver seems to remain in the hunt for Eric Bledsoe and, as I have argued, could be a great piece in The Nugget’s roster. At this point, only time can reveal what is about to happen to the young guard's career.