Denver Nuggets: Get to know Bol Bol

by Eric Spyropoulos
Staff Writer

Despite not having a pick in the 2019 Draft, the Denver Nuggets came away with a big man oozing with potential in Bol Bol. After the 19-year-old big man fell into the middle of the second round, Denver pounced on the opportunity to add yet another dynamic player to the team’s young core.

“With Bol, at 44 it’s almost laughable at how much of a no-brainer it was,” Nuggets VP of Strategy & Analytics Tommy Balcetis told “He’s a tremendous talent and, from what we’ve seen, a very good guy. We all collectively had him very high. Layne’s (Senior Analyst Layne Vashro) model had him high, while our scouts and basketball people had him high as well. It was shocking to us how far he fell.”

Bol is the son of Manute Bol, who played 12 years in the NBA and led the league in blocks per game twice. While Manute stood at 7’7”, Bol comes in at 7’2” with a 7’7” wingspan.

Bol entered the 2019 draft after playing in just nine games during his freshman season at the University of Oregon. Before suffering a season-ending stress fracture in his left foot, Bol was dominant on both ends of the floor. He averaged 21 points, 9.6 rebounds and 2.7 blocks per game. A key aspect of Bol’s offensive game is his ability to stretch the floor and knock down 3-pointers, as he connected on 52 percent from beyond the arc at Oregon.

Given Bol’s unique skill set on offense and his ability to defend the rim (he averaged 2.7 blocks per game and also had four blocks in four of the nine collegiate games he played in), there is reason to believe that he can be a two-way center as he develops his game.

Bol spoke to about his offseason training and the upcoming 2019-20 season.

What have you been working on this summer in preparation for your rookie season?

Just getting stronger and focusing on my health and learning the Nuggets’ system and plays.

What differences do you expect in NBA competition compared to college?

The main thing is guys are going to be bigger, faster and stronger.

What’s one aspect of your game that people may not know about?

I think people probably know a bit, but I think I will surprise a lot of people with my passing ability.

What are your expectations for the 2019-20 season? Both as an individual player and for the team?

I think for myself personally is that I want to prove I am healthy and can handle an NBA system and show I can be a helpful piece for our team down the line. As for our team, I am really excited and think we are going to be tough to handle. These guys were so close to the West Finals last year and I think we can be even better this season.

How have you liked Denver so far?

I’ve really liked it so far. It’s a beautiful, clean city and the people have been very friendly, I’ve been enjoying my time here.


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