The Los Angeles Lakers finished the 2022-23 NBA season much better than predicted. D’Angelo Russell was one of the many players who contributed in their resurgence, but it wasn’t enough to stop Nikola Jokic’s Denver Nuggets.

The purple and gold were swept by Michael Malone’s men, who went on to win the championship against the Miami Heat. The new season is still months away from us, but the Nuggets are expected to contend again.

Jokic is just getting started, and the team has been able to keep the core that won the ring. However, Denver has also lost a key contributor such as Bruce Brown, which is why Russell thinks they won’t be so successful in 2024.

D’Angelo Russell believes Bruce Brown’s departure will hurt Nuggets

Losing Bruce Brown hurt them, losing Bruce Brown hurt them though,” Russell said on The Pat Bev Podcast with Rone. “Nah, he [Christian Braun] solid, but Bruce Brown is like unpredictable bro.

“He could go 3-of-5 from the 3, play point guard, get you in the bonus, shoot 10-12 free throws. He’s just a problem, I think. I think any team that wants and appreciates him, he’s only going to get better, respect.”

Following a fantastic performance in the postseason, Bruce Brown landed a two-year, $45 million contract with the Indiana Pacers in the open market. The Nuggets still have most of their championship pieces, but Russell may have a point.