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All he does is win: Nuggets rookie Christian Braun has won five titles in seven years

Braun won 3 state championships in high school, an NCAA title with the Kansas Jayhawks in 2022 and now a historic NBA title with the Nuggets.
Posted: 11:28 PM, Jun 12, 2023
Updated: 2023-06-14 13:26:02-04
Christian Braun, Bam Adebayo, Max Strus

DENVER — All Nuggets rookie Christian Braun does is win.

The Nuggets’ first-ever NBA title, sealed Monday night in Game 5, capped a remarkable accomplishment for the 22-year-old Braun.

He joined a short list of players to win an NCAA title and an NBA title in consecutive years. Braun was a member of the NCAA tournament champion Kansas Jayhawks in 2022.

The other players to accomplish the feat, according to ESPN Stats & Information:

  • Magic Johnson (Michigan State, Los Angeles Lakers, 1979-80)
  • Bill Russell (San Francisco, Boston Celtics, 1956-57)
  • Billy Thompson (Louisville, Los Angeles Lakers, 1986-87)
  • Henry Bibby (UCLA, New York Knicks, 1972-73)

Braun played in all five NBA Finals games, scoring 15 points on 7-of-8 shooting in an electric performance off the bench in Game 3. He made all three of his shots to score 6 points in Game 2. He added seven points in the series-clinching Game 5 win.

What makes this story even more incredible is that Braun also won championships his sophomore, junior and senior seasons in high school at Blue Valley Northwest High School in suburban Kansas City. That means the NBA title marked the fifth championship in seven years for Braun.

To look at it another way, Braun has won a championship in 22% of the years he’s been alive.

We caught up with his high school coach, Ed Fritz, about what makes Braun special. Fritz told us Braun came to Blue Valley Northwest as a 5-foot-8 freshman, but was 6-foot-4 a year later.

And Fritz said his game grew just as fast.

"I've never been around a player that has improved as much as he has," Fritz said. "It just seems like every time I turned around, he was taking another step. [...] I just remember turning to coaches on the other bench and saying, 'I think we got a pretty good player here. And I could see this guy being a pro some day.'"

"So it was really cool, just to be a part of it."

Jamal Murray, Christian Braun
Denver Nuggets guard Jamal Murray, center, celebrates with teammates after the team won the NBA Championship with a victory over the Miami Heat in Game 5 of basketball's NBA Finals, Monday, June 12, 2023, in Denver. (AP Photo/Jack Dempsey)