Doug Pensinger/Getty Images
The center position was one of the most steady spots for the Nuggets in the regular season. Kosta Koufos was the starter, and JaVale McGee came off the bench as the energizer and potential game changer.
Then it became one of the biggest question marks after Andrew Bogut dominated Koufos badly enough that George Karl put McGee in the starting lineup (Koufos started all 81 games he played in during the regular season).
Going into next year, that's the path Karl should take. McGee led the Nuggets in PER with a 20.8 rating last season, and while you want to maximize his energy and only play him 25 minutes per game, putting him next to Kenneth Faried is too deadly from an athleticism standpoint to pass up.
Even so, neither center—nor Timofey Mozgov—has a high-level skill set offensively. If Denver had someone that presented a bigger threat, whether it's pounding the rock or stretching the defense to the outside, Faried's job would be a lot easier and the lane would be more ideal to attack.
One name that the Nuggets could go after via trade is Kevin Love, but do they really want to give up a minimum of two solid players on someone who is coming off two major injuries?
It's intriguing to think about what Love could bring to the Nuggets offensively, and he would certainly help stretch the defense. However, is he worth the risk? Does Denver sacrifice one of its centers and small forwards to get a guy like this to play in an up-tempo system?
For how many bidders there will be for Love, I'm not even sure that's enough to land him.
This is a deep draft class in terms of centers, and there are a couple players who could drop to Denver's 27th pick that would fit in well with the Nuggets. In examining Jeff Goodman's center rankings at CBS Sports, those players are Gorgui Dieng and Jeff Withey.
Dieng has several strengths. Offensively, he can run the floor, has great touch at the basket and can also throw down the rock. Defensively, he has a 7'3.5" wingspan, according to DraftExpress.com, and is a good rim protector and shot-blocker. Dieng is also a terrific rebounder, can rack up several tip-ins and is used to playing in fast breaks at Louisville.
Withey has similar attributes. He's used to running the floor at Kansas and combines his touch with his sneaky athleticism to go over defenders. He also has great footwork in the post for the half court. Defensively, Withey is a shot-blocking machine and consistently contests shots.
Both players should be considered for the 27th pick.