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Nurkic Brings Pressure On Defense

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Jusuf Nurkic returned in a win over the Orlando Magic, and the big guy has ideas about what he can contribute.

NBA: Portland Trail Blazers at Orlando Magic Mary Holt-USA TODAY Sports

While out with a wrist fracture, Jusuf Nurkic of the Portland Trail Blazers wasn’t just watching the game from the sidelines; he was analyzing how he could make a difference on defense when he made his return to play. According to Jamie Hudson of NBC Sports Northwest, it motivated Nurkic to be aggressive.

“I see with Enes being back, Melo at the five, we kind of struggled to be aggressive defensively,” Nurkic explained. “I thought being aggressive on the guards, they didn’t see that type of defense, and I was just trying to see what they going to do.”

I think a couple times I was blitzing, they have some turnovers. I think we’ve got to be a more aggressive team.”

Coach Terry Stotts said that Nurkic makes those defensive decisions on his own.

“That wasn’t by design, but he does pick his opportunities to do that,” Stotts explained. “As long as it works it’s fine.”

Nurkic was content with his performance upon his return to the court.

“I tried to not force it, just play the right way and I think I moved really good,” Nurkic said. “I liked how I was moving out there and just the way we played.”

We know we are happy to have the Bosnian Beast back.