Gallo, Chandler, Hoping for Wednesday Returns

Monday, March 20, 2017 | Denver Nuggets

By Christopher Dempsey, Altitude Sports

HOUSTON -- The Nuggets will have to wait at least one more game for veterans Danilo Gallinari and Wilson Chandler to return to the lineup. On Monday morning both said they are closing in on returns but will not be available for the Nuggets second consecutive matchup against the Rockets at the Toyota Center.

“I’ll try and be ready for the next game,” said Gallinari, who has missed two games due to a bone bruise in his left knee. “It’s swollen. It swells up, especially after workouts. I’m waiting for pain to go to discomfort and from discomfort to nothing. I’m not going to wait for it to get to no pain. But I’m very close.”

Gallinari did some on-court agility work during the Nuggets morning shootaround.

Meanwhile, Chandler said “the goal is Wednesday” when asked about his possible return to action from a right groin contusion. He worked on the side during shootaround and is encouraged by his progress.

“There’s nothing structurally wrong,” Chandler said.

Chandler has missed three straight games due to the bruise. All of this leaves Nuggets coach Michael Malone shorthanded again and forces young players to have to grow up quickly playing big minutes as the team tries to hold on to the eighth spot in the Western Conference.

“It’s a very tough time of year and an important stretch to have two of your best players out,” Malone said. “And Darrell Arthur didn’t make the trip. So you have three veterans who aren’t able to play right now, which makes it pretty tough. But it is what it is. This is the hand that we’ve been dealt. You go out there and you try your heart out and you make the most of it. If you come up short, you learn from it and move on to the next challenge.”

Christopher Dempsey: @chrisadempsey on Twitter or