Michael Porter Jr. has played an incredibly crucial role for the Denver Nuggets this entire season. He's been integral to his team's historic NBA Playoffs run, and they will need more of the same from him as they try and win the big prize in the NBA Finals against the Miami Heat.
There's no question that Porter is a very talented scorer. He has proven on multiple occasions that he's the type who can go off on any given night. However, that's not what the Nuggets need from him on a nightly basis. The 24-year-old has embraced the role that he has been given, even if it requires him to take a step back on offense.
Speaking to the press on Tuesday ahead of their Game 3 matchup against the Heat, Porter was asked about his defensive mismatch against a smaller Gabe Vincent. The Nuggets stud got brutally honest in his response in that he is well aware of how he can take advantage of the said size mismatch. However, Porter also knows that this is not what the offense requires of him:
“That's part of sacrificing for this team because there may be times where one of us feels like we have a mismatch, but that's just not the offense that we're running at the moment,” MPJ said. “There's times in transition when you can try to utilize the mismatch that you have. If Gabe Vincent is guarding me, I feel like I could just get the ball and go score but that's not necessarily what our team offense is about. That's not what we've been doing this whole year. So if that means staying (in) space even though I feel like I have a matchup, sometimes that's what I have to do.”
"There's times in transition when you can try to utilize the mismatch that you have. If Gabe Vincent is guarding me, I feel like I could just get the ball & go score but that's not necessarily what our team offense is about."
🗣️ Michael Porter Jr.pic.twitter.com/XjeeYKOXWO
— ClutchPoints (@ClutchPointsApp) June 7, 2023
This response speaks volumes of how Michael Porter Jr has fully bought into a team-first mentality. As he admitted, there are times that he feels he can score over a defender like Gabe Vincent, but he's shown a significant level of discipline by sticking to the game plan. This is exactly what Nuggets fans want to hear from MPJ, and it is this type of mentality that will make supporters adore him even more.