If there is a positive to take away from the 2014-’15 Denver Nuggets roster, you could look at players such as Jusuf Nurkic, Will Barton, and Ty Lawson. However, the play of Danilo Gallinari has been eye-popping of late, something you would have seen from him during the 2013 regular season.
Gallinari, 26, has had a rough go of it dating back to when the Denver Nuggets acquired the forward from the New York Knicks in a deal that shipped Carmelo Anthony out of the Mile High City. We all remember the injury in 2013 quite vividly. In a regular season game against the Dallas Mavericks on Apr. 4, 2013. Gallo made his way through the paint and awkwardly planting on his left leg, immediately going down in pain. The very next day, Gallinari was diagnosed with a torn left ACL and would miss the playoffs.
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Since that time, Gallinari had two procedures on his left ACL. Gallo underwent reconstructive surgery on his ACL during the second-half of 2014 and would miss the remainder of the season. Danilo made his much-anticipated return on Oct. 29, 2014 against the Detroit Pistons at home, logging seven points in 18 minutes of play.
Fast-forward to December of 2014 and Gallinari experienced soreness in his knee, the right one that is. A couple of weeks later, the Italian forward was diagnosed with a torn right meniscus and would be given a timetable of three weeks recovery.
Fast-forward to Mar. 22, 2015, where Danilo Gallinari drops 40 points against the Orlando Magic. Danilo was struggling to find his form all-season long due to rust and rehab, yet he appears to be finding his stroke as the season is nearing an end. Just in time, right?
Back to Danilo’s 40-point game against Orlando, that’s as good as it gets. Denver went on to win the game 119-100, but there is some hope for the Nuggets going into the 2015-’16 campaign after their play of late. Gallo shot 12-of-21 from the field, including 6-of-13 from beyond-the-arc. He went on to add seven rebounds, four assists, three steals, two blocks, and a +15 rating.
Over the last five games, Denver is currently 2-3. With Danilo Gallinari in the lineup, they are 2-1. Gallo sat out against the Memphis Grizzlies and Miami Heat simply just to rest; Denver is being cautious with his workload as the season comes to a close. During those three games Gallinari played in, he is averaging 22.3 points, 4.7 rebounds, 3.0 assists, and 1.3 steals. Not to mention, Gallo is shooting 46.7% from field, including 89.5% from the charity stripe.
There is really not much to watch for (of course), regarding the Denver Nuggets for the remainder of the season, but keep an eye out for Danilo Gallinari and his progress. The forward is currently averaging 10.8 points, 3.4 rebounds, and 1.2 assists over 50 games played this season.