Report: Nuggets extend contract of coach Michael Malone

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When a team has something that works — and Nuggets coach Mike Malone paired with center Nikola Jokic definitely works — the smart thing to do is lock it in place. Don’t go changing things.

With that in mind, the Nuggets have extended the contract of coach Micahel Malone, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.

Malone, who had the 2022-2023 season remaining on his deal, will now be tied to the franchise through what it hopes will be a window of championship contention over the next few years.

On paper — and for a brief window on the court — the Nuggets looked like a contender before injuries hit. Denver hopes that next season (and for a few seasons after), when Michael Porter Jr. is healthy, and Jamal Murray returns (Malone recently said the point guard “not close” to playing after a stint in the G-League), the Nuggets will be a contender built around Jokic. They could be a favorite to come out of the West next season.

Even without their three stars playing a game together this season, the Nuggets are 43-30 and the No. 6 seed in the West.

Malone as coach is part of what makes it all work in Denver, he is already third on the franchise all-time wins list with 309. He is in place to be a much bigger part of franchise history in the coming years thanks to this new deal.