The Denver Nuggets lost the game to the Charlotte Hornets on the road Friday Night, but the bigger concern right now is the potential loss of star forward Paul Millsap for a significant amount of time. Millsap left the game in the second half with a foot injury, and after the game Mike Singer of the Denver Post tweeted this out:

Shams Charania of The Athletic followed shortly after with this:

Whether those sources are the same or different, the fact remains that a broken toe for Millsap would sideline him into the new year and would wreak havoc on Denver’s defense, which relies on the astute Millsap to clean up the mistakes made both on the perimeter and inside and allows Denver to hedge with abandon.

It would also tax a roster beset with injuries already. Will Barton and Gary Harris are both out with no current timetable for return while Denver’s reinforcements like Isaiah Thomas and even rookies Michael Porter Jr. and Jarred Vanderbilt are still deep on the injured list. Losing Millsap would likely force Denver to play Juancho Hernangomez at small forward and give a heavy dose of Trey Lyles at the four, or even shape a return of the Mason Plumlee / Nikola Jokic front court that got some run last year to poor result.

Perhaps now that Plumlee isn’t suffering from abdominal injuries it would work better, but regardless if Millsap’s toe is indeed broken the Nuggets will have tough lineup decisions to make and will need some strong performances from their bench players to survive a long stretch without their defensive lynchpin. This has got to be especially frustrating for Paul himself, as it would be his second major injury in two seasons with the Nuggets after being extremely healthy the rest of his career. Our best wishes to Millsap for a quick recovery from whatever injury this winds up being.


Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN confirms the broken toe. So that sucks.