Danilo Gallinari is unlikely to return from his injured knee until after Jan. 1 after his reconstructive surgery was delayed, according to the Denver Post. Gallinari was supposed to have had his operation by now, but will not have it for another two weeks, pushing his original Jan. 1 return date back to late January or even February.
Gallinari tore his ACL and his meniscus on April 4 and had surgery to repair the meniscus a month ago, but the operation to repair the ACL has been put on hold. It normally takes at least six months to recover from a torn ACL and can take as long as nine months, so if Gallinari is not going to have the second operation for at least two more weeks, a Jan. 1 return seems unlikely.
The Nuggets surged to third place in the Western Conference with Gallinari and held on to that position, but they were eliminated in the first round of the playoffs without their small forward. Gallinari was having a career year, averaging 16.2 points and 5.2 rebounds before his injury.
After Gallinari's injury, Wilson Chandler got most of the Italian's minutes and that should continue next season. He averaged 13 points and 5.1 rebounds in the regular season and 12 points and 5.5 rebounds in the playoffs.