Center Jusuf Nurkic, 22, has been traded from the Denver Nuggets, along with a 2017 first-round pick (via Memphis), to the Portland Trail Blazers in exchange for center Mason Plumlee and a 2018 second-round draft pick. Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical was broke the news on Sunday:
Sources on @TheVertical: Portland sends Denver center Mason Plumlee and '18 2nd-round pick for Jusuf Nurkic and '17 first-rounder (via Griz)
Jusuf Nurkic Traded to Portland Trail Blazers
Nurkic has one year left on his contract after this season. Additionally, Nurkic has a non-guaranteed team option to extend his deal through the 2018-19 season. If the option is not exercised, Nurkic would become an unrestricted free agent in the 2018 off-season. The Nuggets traded for Nurkic on draft night, signing him to a four-year rookie deal.
Nurkic is currently in his third year in the association. Capable of providing solid defense and rebounding, Nurkic should step right in as the new starting center for the Blazers.
The 7’0” center is averaging about 8.5 points and around six rebounds per game this season. He is also shooting around 50 percent from both the field and the free throw line.
The Nuggets, on the other hand, grab another first-round pick and add a solid center in Plumlee. They also clear some more room for Nikola Jokic to shine in the frontcourt, as he may be able to play alongside either Plumlee or power forward Kenneth Faried.
Nurkic was selected by the Chicago Bulls with the 16th overall pick of the 2014 NBA Draft. Acquired by Denver on draft night, Nurkic spent his first three seasons in the NBA with the Nuggets.