Nuggets GM Calvin Booth has options heading into first NBA draft as team’s lead decision-maker

The Nuggets have options.

Specifically, general manager Calvin Booth has numerous levers to pull ahead of Thursday night’s NBA draft, which will be Booth’s first as the Nuggets’ primary-decision maker. The Nuggets enter the draft armed with the Nos. 21 and 30 overall picks.

What they need – and what the Nuggets are targeting – is fairly obvious: porous on the perimeter, the Nuggets desperately need to improve defensively. Numerous wing players have been discussed internally, sources said.

If there’s an intriguing perimeter player who can step in and defend immediately, you can bet he’s on Denver’s radar. If that player can shoot from long range, you can all but guarantee the Nuggets have debated his potential.

When Booth assumed responsibilities nearly a month ago in the wake of Tim Connelly’s surprising departure to Minnesota, it took him only a few weeks to execute his first trade. He sent veteran forward JaMychal Green and a 2027 first-round pick to Oklahoma City in exchange for this year’s No. 30 and two future second-round picks.

One interpretation of that move is that it gave Booth another chip to negotiate with heading into this offseason. Booth is adamant about maximizing Nikola Jokic’s prime, which is now. Whatever the cost in the future, Booth’s concern is winning now. It was also an early indication of how aggressive Booth planned to be.

That’s why Thursday’s draft holds so much intrigue.

Theoretically, the Nuggets could draft…

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