One of the things Portland Trail Blazers fans are likely looking forward to the most n the 2020-21 season is seeing Jusuf Nurkic return to home court. According to Dan Favale of Bleacher Report, Nurkic’s performance in the Orlando bubble lands him at the 18 spot when ranking the league’s big men.
After missing most of last season while recovering from compound fractures in his left leg, this should be a year of rediscovery for Jusuf Nurkic. Except, well, it doesn’t look like he needs to find himself. He didn’t miss a beat while playing inside the Disney bubble. He was moving well on defense, making the same plays on offense and averaged over 30 minutes per game.
Expectations needn’t be adjusted for him this season. Portland has put more defense in front of him on the wings and is adequately stocked with players who can optimize his vision on short rolls. This placement will wind up selling him short if he works a league-average-ish three-pointer into his repertoire—he chucked triples at Disney—or the Blazers defense creeps into the top 15 riding the coattails of his drop coverage and heightened ability to stay in front of opposing 5s who put the ball on the deck.
We look forward to seeing the Bosnian Beast expand his game.
You can read the rest of Favale’s rankings here.