Last season, Kenneth Faried averaged 9.6 points, 7.6 rebounds and 21.2 minutes over 61 games. All three of those categories were career-lows for the former No. 22 selection in the 2011 NBA Draft.
This offseason, the Nuggets added All-Star power forward Paul Millsap, thus making the power forward position even more crowded. As a result, Faried has found himself thrust into a number of trade rumors this summer, but it hasn’t seemed to bother him.
"I actually like it," Faried told Altitude 950. "Honestly, before I used to hate it, because it's like, 'Wow, they want to trade me.' But now I'm thinking, 'Hey, I’m still being talked about, people still know my work in the NBA,' and that’s respectful and humbling to me.”
Along with Faried and Millsap, Juan Hernangomez, Darrell Arthur, Trey Lyles and rookie Tyler Lydon will also likely battle for minutes in the frontcourt. Nikola Jokic should be in line for all the minutes he can handle at the center spot after a breakout season last year.
Since Danilo Gallinari’s departure left an opening spot at small forward, Faried thinks there’s an outside chance that he could find himself in the starting five, either at the three or four.
“Honestly, yeah, I’m like still a competitor at the end of the day,” Faried told BSNDenver.com’s Harrison Wind recently when asked if he prefers to start. “So if anybody asks me that, like yes, of course. Like you asked me now, yes at the end of the day, like you said, I’m a competitor so I’m going to want to fight to be in the five.”
Despite the fact that he will likely see a major reduction in minutes if he remains a member of the Nuggets, Faried seems to be in good spirits.
“I was a starter and that’s how I take my career and that’s always how I took myself as a starter. It’s going to be kind of interesting because we’re going to have good battles at practice if I come off the bench,” he said. “When I come off the bench I’m going to still play hard and care because at the end of the day it’s about the team.”
Faried, is owed $12,921,348 in the upcoming season and then $13,764,045 in 2018-2019. Before missing the last three games of the 2016-2017 season due to injury, head coach Mike Malone played him just 15.8 minutes per game in which he put up just 6.3 points and 3.3 rebounds, making a minimal impact.
Therefore, the possibility of him carving out a major role in Denver seems like a very unlikely possibility.