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Denver Nuggets: JaVale McGee's Maturity

DENVER, CO - APRIL 18:  JaVale McGee #34 of the Denver Nuggets dunks the ball against Kenyon Martin #2 of the Los Angeles Clippers at Pepsi Center on April 18, 2012 in Denver, Colorado. The Clippers defeated the Nuggets 104-98. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
Doug Pensinger/Getty Images
Jess Matthew BeltranCorrespondent IIApril 21, 2012

John Wall would throw the ball as high as he could, and he knows JaVale McGee would catch it every time…

The seven-foot center, JaVale, was the same player who stuffed three balls at a time, and dunked two balls on one side in a slam-dunk contest.

He is a special player. He can play defense and can dominate any talented center with his 7'6'' wingspan and 32-inch vertical leap. However, he never gets to maximize his talents.

Most of the time it was on him, attempting free throw dunks and goofing around on big leads. Twenty-four years old and yet maturity seemed far-fetched. A YouTube clip entitled, “Javale McGee top 8 dumb plays” that garnered over a million views, has shown JaVale’s decision making.

Two of the "dumbest" plays? The part when he wasn’t able to post up against the 5’9” point guard Isiah Thomas and the time when he ran to the opposite side while they were still on offense. People have been so used to seeing him fail that people are already calling him “Jafail."

On the last part of the YouTube clip, JaVale was called for a technical foul, for hanging on the rim for too long. However, it was his 11th points that gave him an unusual triple-double with 12 rebounds and 12 blocks. It was a feat that was last made 14 years ago by Shawn Bradley (22 points, 22 rebounds and 13 blocks). Everybody is so focused on his weaknesses that they failed to see his strengths.

He's a rough stone who needs a lot of work.

The Denver Nuggets see something in him that made them trade their most defensive and polished player on their team (Nene). They saw a raw talent that needs a lot of work, but could be very beneficial to them in the long run.

Maturity will always come with experience; JaVale needs the guidance of a George Karl. He needs the environment of a winning team that strives on teamwork rather than individual plays.

The Denver Nuggets are poised to clinch a playoff spot, and with their current position (seventh place), they would be facing the power house Oklahoma City Thunder (second place). They need McGee’s defensive presence, but most of all, they just need him to finally grow up.

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