If you’re a nerd like me, chances are that you’ve already been to see Avengers: Infinity War, and you’re still reeling from the craziness that went down in the show. I won’t be giving away any spoilers in this article so no need to worry. I’m a big fan of the Marvel movies, and I firmly believe they are hands down better than any movie DC Comics has put out. This includes Wonder Woman. Yeah, Wonder Woman was okay, and it’s awesome to see a female hero for a change, but the writing and the production of DC Comics’ movies, and Marvel are worlds apart.
This week, as I was brainstorming a fun topic for my column, the Avengers: Infinity War trailer popped up on my TV and it got me thinking: If the Nuggets were the Avengers, who would best fit each role? Naturally, all the Nuggets players are heroes in my book so the comparison is fitting.
Now before I begin my list let me issue my typical disclaimer about an article of this nature. First, there may be heroes that I leave off my list simply because the number of Avengers doesn’t align exactly with the number of Nuggets players I chose to represent. Next, It’s perfectly fine to disagree with my selections, but you must make your argument on what would be a better fit in the comments. Also, for the real Marvel enthusiasts out there, I realize that not all the heroes I mention have been formally inducted into the Avengers group, but if they were in the latest movie they will be called an Avenger for simplicity’s sake so don’t nerd out on me too much.
And finally, remember, it’s for fun.
Let me begin my officially unofficial list by working my way from the secondary heroes up to the more prominent ones. One of my absolute favorite Marvel characters ever has to be Spider-Man. He’s been through some rough times, but his new super powers have their benefits. When the older, more established Avengers aren’t able to be in the fight, Spider-Man steps up to the plate and handles things with his own style and surprising maturity for a such a young hero.
He’s new to the Avenger group, but he hasn’t hesitated to jump right in and make himself an indispensable part of the lineup in short order. Always eager, and ready Spider-Man will hopefully see more action next season.
Of course, I’m referring to new Nugget Trey Lyles. As I’ve said many times before, Lyles was the only bright spot out of last year’s bizarre draft, and when Millsap went down Lyles was there to keep up the momentum. I think it’s safe to say we were all pleasantly surprised with Lyles’ poise and confidence for his age, and I personally would love to see him have a bigger role next season.
Next up, Star Lord. Star Lord is the flashy show-off of the group, but his emotions can sometimes get him into trouble. He’s half-god, half-man, and he’s got a chip on his shoulder when it comes to proving himself to the world. Star Lord is an excellent pilot, and he’s been known to easily navigate through an asteroid field to safety.
Star Lord is the one who always wants to take the final shot, but he can’t always be counted on to get the job done when things get sticky. His bravery and ego cause him to stand out above the rest as he regularly wants the show to be all about him, but he’s best when paired with the more steady heroes of his group.
You may have guessed it—Will Barton perfectly fits the role of Star Lord. Barton is a clutch player for the Nuggets, and when he comes ready to play, his role is vital to the Nuggets’ success. The problem is that he can’t always be counted on to get the job done. Whether it’s ego, or insecurity, Barton can be a back breaker for the Nuggets when he tries too hard to be the lead hero.
Moving on, our next hero is rather curious. Dr. Strange is a sorcerer whose super power is creating anything he can visualize in his mind. Strange operates with the use of his skilled hands, and his methods are a complete mystery. Whereas other heroes succeed by using sheer strength and force of will, Dr. Strange is a thinker and he can be counted on to pull out the stops when the other heroes are in a bind.
Led by intelligence, Strange is never one to get too outwardly excited about anything as he prefers a more calculated approach to things. He can be seen observing from the outside as he contemplates what to do next.
Wilson Chandler fits the bill for the role of Dr. Strange, and while I think Ill Will is peculiar, he’s a vital 6th man for the Nuggets. He’s content with his role, and uncomfortable in the spotlight so he’s perfect as supporting cast to the starting lineup. Chandler’s shooting abilities are sorcerer-like, and his contributions are often game changers for Denver.
The Hulk is one hero that can certainly be a make or break for whatever team he’s playing for—when he can control himself that is. Mild-mannered and shy as a rule, the Hulk turns into a completely different person when it’s showtime, and his presence can work as a nuclear weapon of sorts clearing out anything in his way. The downside for the Hulk is that he can’t always turn on his abilities.
Despite his inconsistency, he’s gotten much better at flipping the switch, and recently his efforts have been impressive. If he can continue to hone his aggression, he can certainly be the one who his team turns to when they need strength and sheer force to push their way through.
Mason Plumlee reminds me of the Hulk in many ways in that when he’s aggressive he’s a show stopper, but when he can’t get it together he simply gets in the way much like Bruce Banner. He has an incredibly high basketball IQ, but that can lead to overthinking and mental grid-lock. If Plumlee can focus on playing free, and aggressive he can continue to develop into a vital bench player for the Nuggets as they look to make the playoffs next season.
I haven’t yet seen the Black Panther movie, but from what I’ve heard it’s incredible. The Black Panther is not a super human, but he has developed into a strong leader who is capable of great strength and focus. Known for speed and agility, the Black Panther is the stealthy one to deliver the fatal blow to his enemy when they’re not looking. Captain America and the Black Panther have formed a strong alliance, and their skills compliment one another well on the battlefield.
Black Panther isn’t known for being flashy or loud, choosing instead to be a quiet leader and disciplined student of his trade. Educated at the finest schools, his understanding of things gives the people he leads a leg up as he can lay out a quick and successful strategy.
There is an air of stealth and quietness surrounding Gary Harris which is why I have picked him for this character. Harris has the unique ability to be very sneaky and agile against his opponents, and his low key personality makes him a prime candidate to take (and make) the game winning shot as no one really expects it. Steady and focused, Harris combines well with who I will list as Captain America as they work to execute plays effectively.
The god of thunder as he is known is over 1500 years old, and he’s arguably the Avenger that is the glue holding everyone together. Thor has seen many things in his years on the battlefield, and his steady control brings security to the other heroes he fights with. As an old man, Thor knows how to throw down the hammer (or his new ax) to prevent his enemy from advancing, and he will do what it takes to protect the others he fights for.
He gets knocked down, but he gets right back up never leaving his comrades fighting on their own for long.
Naturally, I’ve selected Paul Millsap to play the role of Thor for the Nuggets. He’s the old man of the group, and his wisdom and experience on the court brings a steady pace for the younger players on the roster. Millsap is known for throwing down the hammer on defense, and once he’s recovered completely from his wounds next season, he’s sure to be throwing the ax on anyone who tries to the ball to the rim for the easy layup.
The second to last hero to be included on this list is Iron Man. Iron Man is by far the most stylish, and intelligent hero among the Avengers. He’s amassed an arsenal of weapons to utilize in a myriad of situations, and he can call upon them to step up at any time. He executes plays in a way that only he is known for, and when the battle is on the line, Iron Man typically has a trick up his sleeve to force a win for the good guys.
Iron Man can also be known to be a bit mouthy as he’s engaged in some public trash talk that has gotten under his enemies’ skin causing them to target him more so than they would normally.
Jamal Murray is the best Nugget to play Iron Man as his style and intelligence are unmistakable when he’s on the court. He ruffled the feathers of some fragile Lakers and their fans with his trash talk causing them to come gunning for him. Murray has quickly become one of the most valued players on the Nuggets roster this season, and he’s earned his spot as a strong member of the main core. As he develops his weapons, he will no doubt be a main contributor for years to come.
Last, but not least, is Captain America. Cap is hands down my favorite Avenger, and the team simply isn’t the same when he’s not around. Captain America grew from scrawny kid to invincible immortal in a very short period of time, and it took him a while to get used to being known as a hero. Never one to revel in the spotlight, Captain America is focused on using his strengths to benefit his teammates only. He likes to simply get to work, and has a strong sense of right and wrong.
As you may suspect, Nikola Jokic tops my list of candidates to play Captain America, and although he’s a proud Serbian, he takes the cake as invincible immortal in my book. He’s focused on empowering the strengths of his teammates, and whenever he gets the glory he’s quick to pass it on. Jokic IS the Nuggets much like Captain America IS the Avengers—neither are the same without them.
Have a different opinion? Leave your thoughts on what Nuggets is best fit to play what famous Marvel hero in the comments!