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#Nuggetsrank: #8 Darrell Arthur, the rock-chalk Jayhawk

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One of Denver's toughest and most consistent defenders comes in at #8 on our countdown.

Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Over the next few weeks, the Denver Stiffs staff will be previewing the 2016-17 Denver Nuggets. The team enters Michael Malone’s second season with the Nuggets with a mix of new and familiar faces. With a roster mixed with young talent like Jamal Murray and more experienced veterans like Wilson Chandler, the Nuggets are looking to improve on their 33-49 record from last season.

Analysis

Darrell Arthur is about to enter his third full season with the Denver Nuggets. Although he's faced some injury adversity in his career including a torn achilles tendon in 2011, DA has been a fairly steady and consistent presence for the Nuggets in his three years with the team. DA has length and long arms which help him on the defensive end as well as allow him to shoot over taller opponents. Ranked as the 8th best player on the roster by the Stiffs, he is the second best true power forward.

DA put up 7.5 points, 4.2 rebounds, 0.8 blocks and 0.7 steals a game from 21 minutes last season. He will definitely look to up his scoring production this year as sometimes he can be a very streaky shooter.

Malone is known for favoring a defensive minded approach as a coach and Arthur is easily one of the best defenders on the roster.  With the departure of Joffrey Lauvergne and the fact that Malone was loath to admit at media day on Monday who his starting power forward was, there could be a definite upgrade in minutes for Arthur, however, he may be held back at the start of the season depending on how his recovery goes from his knee scoping.

Strengths

Arthur's greatest strengths are on the defensive end. He was the defensive anchor for the second unit for most of last season and even played closing minutes with the starters when coach Malone wanted a more defensive lineup in close games. Although he isn't much a rim protector or shot blocker, Darrell is a great positional defender and does a great job of keeping players away from the paint.

Offensively, Darrell has developed a reliable outside jump shot. He has the flexibility to stretch out the 3 point line and splash some triples or make cuts to the basket and slam it home with his speed. He also has a solid mid-range game as well. Using NBA.com's 2014/15 stats, 60% of all of his shots were considered "catch-and-shoot" and he converted on 43.3% of them.

Weaknesses

One of the concerns with DA is his durability. Too often last season DA would put together a good couple of games before sitting out one with a niggle or knee soreness. He just seems to attract little injuries. This season, Arthur will begin training camp rehabbing from a knee scope and may even miss the start of the regular season.

Despite the above average percentages, Arthur is still a bit of a streaky shooter. He has a quick trigger from outside and is always ready to fire but there are games where his shot isn't falling.

Projected 2016-17 stats

Arthur's projected stats by Hashtag Basketball per 36 minutes of playing time.

FG% FGA FT% FTA PTS 3PM REB AST STL BLK TO
43.8% 12.45 76.7% 1.54 14.33 1.36 7.85 2.22 1.19 1.19 2.05

Contract details

3 year $23 Million deal, averages out to $7,666,667 US a season which makes him one of the top 5 highest paid on the Nuggets roster next year. Arthur has a player option for the last year of his deal which will be 2018-19 season.