Nuggets' Acquistion Of Andre Iguodala Should Propel Team Deeper Into Playoffs

July 21, 2012; Barcelona, SPAIN; USA forward Andre Iguodala during practice in preparation for the 2012 London Olympic Games at Palau Sant Jordi. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-US PRESSWIRE

The Nuggets continue to improve their offseason by acquiring Andre Iguodala from the Philadelphia 76ers in a 4 team trade.

It's finally over.

Dwight Howard was traded to the Los Angeles Lakers and his endless drama will be put on hold. What might be overlooked is the steal the Denver Nuggets pulled off in this trade. Denver acquired a phenomenal player in Andre Iguodala from the Philadelphia 76ers, while clearing up cap room.

For Iguodala, the Nuggets gave up a first round pick, Arron Afflalo, and Al Harrington. Afflalo is scheduled to make $31 million over the next four years and Harrington is owed $21 million over the next three years, albeit two of the years are partially guaranteed.

Iguodala will make $14.7 million next year and can opt out of nearly $16 million the year after that, so Denver not only stays the same salary wise this year, but gains plenty of cap space in the future as well.

Andre Iguodala is arguably the best perimeter defender in the league and he immediately improves Denver's team defense. Not only does he improve their defense, but he makes them downright scary in transition. He can finish as good as anyone in this league with his speed and strength and can get a basket down the stretch when needed, as he proved in the playoffs against the Celtics. Iguodala has averaged in his career 15.3 points, 5.8 rebounds and 4.9 assists in his eight-year career.

Adding Iguodala to a core of Kenneth Faried, JaVale McGee, and Ty Lawson makes the Nuggets a potential No. 3 seed in the Western Conference. They don't have as much talent as the Oklahoma City Thunder or the Lakers, but they have the athleticism, depth and size to make it interesting.

Prior to this trade, the Nuggets were a good team that looked destined for a first round playoff exit, but with Andre Iguodala added into the mix, the Nuggets could end up making a deep playoff run. SI.com's Zach Lowe believes this team could challenge the Lakers in the playoffs again. We'll just need to wait and see if Iguodala is one of the pieces to make that happen.

For more on the Nuggets, check out Denver Stiffs.

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