The season-ending injury to forward Danilo Gallinari may have cost the Denver Nuggets a shot at reaching the NBA Finals last spring, but better news appears to be on the horizon. With the Italian sharpshooter's knee showing steady progress from surgery to repair a torn ACL, he told Sportando's Emiliano Carchia a November return appears possible:
"I'm very happy with how things are going even if the path is still long. It 'been a summer of hard work. Eight hours a day. You see the ball just in picture and the time never passes. But I can see the results of the hard work and according to the doctors I should be ready for the end of November."
That would be good news for a Nuggets team staring a major uncertainty after a highly-active offseason. With a new coach, new management and many new players, having a healthy Gallinari before December would help to stabilize things.
As Denver Stiffs' Nate Timmons notes, returning by Nov. 29 to face the New York Knicks would leave 68 remaining games for Gallinari. The Nuggets have a huge six-game road trip in early December across the East, so having a healthy Gallinari back for that run would be a nice boost.
Amundson, Balkman, Alexander earn training camp invites
The Los Angeles Clippers signed veteran forward Lou Amundson to a non-guaranteed contract with an invitation to training camp on Wednesday, ClipsNation's Steve Perrin writes. The deal requires Amundson to make the team out of camp or he'll be back on the free agent market soon.
This signing puts 16 players under contract for L.A. Three of those players -- Amundson, Maalik Wayns and rookie Brandon Davies -- are signed to non-guaranteed contracts, so it's likely the team lets go of at least one of these guys before the start of the season.
Two more minor deals also went down Wednesday as Renaldo Balkman signed a non-guaranteed deal with the Mavericks and Joe Alexander received a training camp invitation from Golden State. The latter news is especially surprising considering Alexander, the No. 8 pick in the 2008 NBA Draft, hasn't played in the league since 2010.
After securing their future in Northern California earlier this year, the Sacramento Kings have moved forwards with plans for a new downtown arena.. According to a recent report by the Sacramento Bee, the facility will likely include an innovative indoor-outdoor design capable of holding a wider range of events.
The words of new owner Vivek Ranadive, via Sactown Royalty, reveal some of the details:
"[The facility] will be the first basketball arena that has this indoor-outoor feature to it. For concerts and other events, you could actually completely open it up and have 18,000 people inside and another 10,000 people outside."
While it's unclear how the actual design would work, you can imagine an outdoor concourse with clear sightlines to the arena floor. Considering the generally beautiful weather in the region throughout the year, it's an exciting proposition.
Coming off a big run to the East Finals, much of the talk surrounding the Indiana Pacers has focused on the rise of Paul George, the return of Danny Granger and other topics. However, the play of point guard George Hill remains a huge question mark for the team entering the 2013-14 season.
That led Tyler Bischoff of Indy Cornrows to take a closer look at Hill's role in the Pacers' system, particularly on offense. What he found is a talented player who does significantly more damage when playing aggressive and attacking defenses. That's easy to say for most players, but Bischoff breaks down some numbers to show it for the Pacers guard.
While Hill may not be a star player, Bischoff shows pretty clearly how his ability to run the offense and set up his teammates makes him one of the Pacers' most important players. However, he equally shows how the inconsistency in Hill's performance makes him someone difficult to depend on throughout the year.