Gallinari leaves with knee injury
by Adi Joseph, USA TODAY Sports
The Denver Nuggets have the deepest roster in the NBA. They’ve needed it.
Nuggets forward Danilo Gallinari went down with a knee injury during the second quarter of Thursday’s 95-94 victory against the Dallas Mavericks. He did not return, and the team said he would have an MRI on the knee Friday.
Gallinari was driving for a layup when he stumbled and dropped to the court, looking like he was in immense pain. No one touched him on the play. He was helped off the court, wincing the entire way out.
Gallinari, Denver’s second-leading scorer, joins top scorer Ty Lawson on the shelf. Lawson, one of the team’s two point guards, has a slight tear in the plantar fascia of his right foot and likely will miss the rest of the regular season.
Andre Miller already has moved from the bench to the starting lineup for Denver, and an injury to Gallinari would thin the ranks even further. Wilson Chandler and Corey Brewer are good starters at small forward, but they both provide crucial depth to a team that pushes tempo as much as any elite team in the NBA.
Furthermore, the team will miss Gallinari’s efficient high-volume shooting. After a cold start to the season, shooting 34% on threes in November and December, he has found his mark, hitting 40.5%.