Hyland produced 15 points, six rebounds and four assists in 21 minutes off of the bench during a 105-96 win over the Atlanta Hawks. He recorded 11 points alone in the fourth quarter to help keep the Nuggets ahead for their fourth straight win.
The performance by Hyland came two nights after recording a then-career-high 12 points in a win over the Indiana Pacers. The two games are his first of the season scoring in double figures.
Malone liked what Hyland brought to the second unit in the win on Friday.
My man Bones, ‘let’s get Bizzy Bones.’ He is hitting big shots, talking to the crowd, getting the place going crazy. That unit as a whole, I felt the defense led to offense and it was really fun to watch. Now, you don’t feel that urgency to get your starters back in.
This has been a tremendous homestand so far. To hold another opponent under 100 points, 40% from the field, 18% from three, obviously, there are things we can clean up but I’m so proud of our guys for playing the right way.
The play of Hyland, in addition to his outgoing personality, has made him a fan favorite in Denver. The crowd at Ball Arena seemingly gets amped up each time he checks into games and when he makes a play for himself or others on the court.
The Nuggets recently moved Hyland into the rotation in an effort to help create more scoring off the bench. The team ranks 26th in the NBA in bench scoring and wants Hyland’s ability to drive into the paint and create on the court as much as possible.
The confidence the Nuggets have given Hyland has helped spur his recent play.
They want me to go out there and make plays. They want me to go out there and score. They just want me to be Bones. Don’t overthink, just play your game and just be you. To hear that from the vets and the coaches, that makes you go out there and just play basketball and not overthink anything just coming in as a rookie. That goes a long way with me, just my teammates trusting me.
Hyland will continue to get playing time off the bench and could emerge as a key contributor in the future. His last two performances certainly offer a glimpse of what he can bring on a nightly basis.