Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Danilo Gallinari — Return of the Rooster

Danilo Gallinari: Waiting On The Sidelines

Danilo Gallinari insists Milan has way more basketball courts than New York, but the Denver Nuggets forward had to stay away from all of them while recovering from a torn ACL. Strolling down some New York neighborhoods, Gallinari fills in VICE Sports on how he spent his 18 months away from the courts: becoming a restaurateur, downing Aperol Spritz, and working on his "full throttle" dance moves.
Danilo Gallinari | #8 | F | Denver Nuggets

Spotlight on … Danilo Gallinari, forward, Nuggets

When: There are times when the sample size is too small. And there are times when it’s indicative of a larger movement taking place. That’s where we are with Danilo Gallinari, who is the penultimate Denver Post NBA player of the week for the evaluation period of April 4-10.

What’s up: In two games, Gallinari averaged 37 points, 8.0 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 1.5 blocked shots. He shot 57.1 percent from the field, including 53.8 percent from the 3-point line. The Nuggets split those games, one win and one double-overtime loss, but when Gallo was on the court he was a plus-24.

Background: For the first time all season, the many injuries in the past two years genuinely seem to be part of Gallinari’s past. He has battled to return to form from many knee injuries and surgeries, and last week he showed it. “Some folks are surprised, but Gallo is a very good basketball player,” Nuggets interim coach Melvin Hunt said. “Once he gets a little more time with his ‘new’ body, Gallo’s a special kind of player. He’s got a big heart; he wants to make plays.” Gallinari’s best game produced a career-high 47 points against the Dallas Mavericks on Friday. He was 15-of-23 from the field and made seven 3-pointers.

Dempsey’s take: In a 29-50 season for the Nuggets, it’s been fun to watch Gallinari essentially return to the form he was in when this two-year journey of injuries began in April 2013. A large part of his success has been not settling for jump shots, though lately he’s been making a lot of them. But his ability to get the ball to the rim and finish strong are indications that not only are his knees feeling good, they’re also not in his head — he isn’t worried about being careful on the court to not re- injure them. There is determination in Gallo’s eyes, an edge to his game, and I can’t think of a better person than him to be having success. — The Denver Post

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