JaVale McGee's Denver Nuggets Highlight Collection Trumps His Blooper Reel

Preston DeGarmoAnalyst IJanuary 6, 2013

January 3, 2013; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Nuggets center JaVale McGee (34) sits on the floor after being fouled during the second half against the Minnesota Timberwolves at the Pepsi Center.  The Timberwolves won 101-97.  Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

JaVale McGee is an extremely fun NBA player to watch. Unfortunately, that’s not always for the best reason.

Though recognized for his elite athleticism and shot-blocking ability, McGee has perhaps become best known around the league for his frequent bloopers that seem to occur almost every week. Whether through poorly timed blocks, tumbling falls or blatant lapses in focus, McGee often finds his way back to the bench after frustrating Denver coach George Karl with a variety of embarrassing errors. 

Though the selection of bloopers is plentiful, one in particular provides a golden example of the up-and-down nature of McGee's career 

Though McGee’s frequent mistakes provide comic relief and often display a glaring lack of focus, they also often serve to show his rare skill set for a center. In the clip in which McGee topples to the floor and hurls the ball into the stands, he also performs an excellent behind-the-back move to split the defenders. Though obviously not the most logical course of action, this sequence goes to illustrate his immense talent level for such a large player, and hints at the versatility that allows him to finish so creatively around the basket.

McGee’s mistakes also often occur after terrific defensive plays on his part. Though not the smartest defender, McGee is a presence nonetheless, and his success in defending the rim far outweighs his occasional mental errors while trying to do so. 

As shown in the clip below, McGee is formidable not only as a shot-blocker, but also as a presence in the passing lanes. Though fans have plenty of reason to shake their heads at what happens afterward, the initial defensive effort by McGee deserves to be recognized and goes to highlight the boost this seven-footer can provide to Denver’s defense.

McGee may lack the consistency (and basketball I.Q. level) that can be found in more traditional centers, but his talent level is clearly through the roof. If harnessed in more ideal situations, this phenomenal skill could result in highlights rather than bloopers.

Speaking of highlights, McGee produces no shortage of top plays either, and these outstanding feats serve to counteract the center’s occasional mental lapses.  

Few players in this league can match McGee’s finishing ability, and he now shows much greater awareness offensively than when he first came into the league.

While McGee is certainly more prone to committing hilarious mistakes than just about any other player in the NBA, these errors often carry a hidden silver lining and are more than made up for by the big man’s outstanding upside on the court.