MPJ is nursing an injured hip!
Ok, that’s not true, Michael Porter Jr. is recovering from a second back surgery as we mentioned earlier. Also, we touched on video we’ve seen of Porter shooting before games and in practice. His motion is fluid and strong. His shot is a thing of beauty, it’s rumored that when assistant Mark Price saw MPJ shoot, he wept (I made that up).
It is a beautiful shot and Porter looks comfortable. He says he’s pain-free but the Nuggets are clearly being cautious. With good reason, a healthy Porter would likely have been the top pick in the draft. Before signing with Missouri, he was touted as a can’t miss prospect. Despite playing limited time for the Tigers, he is still beloved in Columbia.
At 6’10” and 210 lb., Porter’s game is compared to Giannis Antetokounmpo and Kevin Durant. That’s lofty company for a man that hasn’t played a meaningful game of basketball at either the college or professional level but that’s how well regarded MPJ’s potential is.
Those of us old enough to remember can recall how back issues robbed Larry Johnson of his incredible athletic ability. We saw back problems wreck the last quarter of Steve Nash‘s career. Backs are a scary thing. We can fix knees and hips and toes. Backs issues seem a lot more troubling.
So, MPJ is a risk but the upside far outweighs the potential loss. The Nuggets are young and deep, Porter is gravy, they are formidable without him but man, if he is right and that pretty shot translates from the gym to the court, we are in for a treat. Denver has never had the top pick in the draft but if Porter works out, they will have gotten the talent of a top pick.
The other injured rookie has a similar issue: