With Gallinari heading to Los Angeles, Denver is slated to get a 2019 2nd-round pick, while Atlanta will pick up Jamal Crawford, Diamond Stone and a first-round pick. Gallinari joining the Clippers means they'll finally have a capable offensive threat at small forward after having to settle with guys like Luc Mbah a Moute and Wesley Johnson this past year. Look for Gallinari to instantly slot in to the starting five, while also picking up a decent pay raise from the $15 million he made last season. Gallinari is coming off a 2016-17 campaign where he averaged 18.2 points, 5.2 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 2.0 three-pointers across 33.9 minutes.
Gallinari is expected to be part of a sign-and-trade that will ultimately send him to the Clippers, Shams Charania of The Vertical reports.
Although the details of the trade haven't been finalized, the arrangement sending Gallinari further west is part of a larger agreement that would include the sign-and-trade of Paul Millsap from the Hawks to the Nuggets, with Jamal Crawford and Diamond Stone heading to Atlanta. In this scenario, Gallinari will almost assuredly be the new starting small forward for the Clippers.
Gallinari will opt out of his $16.1 million player option for the 2017-18 season and become an unrestricted free agent, Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports reports.
Gallinari has yet to rule out re-signing with the Nuggets during free agency, but he's fully expected to command an even more lucrative contract as one of the top forwards available on the open market. The eight-year veteran and former first-round pick out of Italy is coming off a 2016-17 campaign that netted him averages of 18.2 points, 5.2 rebounds and 2.1 assists across 33.9 minutes. Gallinari would offer a prospective team a player that can score consistently and effectively from all over the floor and his status as a well-known three-point threat, who shot 39 percent from deep last year, should bring around plenty of potential suitors.
With the Nuggets eliminated from playoff contention, the team will opt to give 28-year-old Gallinari the rest of the season off to get a better look at some of their younger guys. Gallinari will finish the year averaging 18.2 points, 5.2 rebounds and 2.1 assists across 33.9 minutes per game while shooting 44.7 percent from the field and 38.9 percent from beyond the arc. In his place, Wilson Chandler, Malik Beasley and Juancho Hernangomez will likely be the main beneficiaries of his absence.
Gallinari scored 34 points (12-20 FG, 4-9 3Pt, 6-6 FT) while adding 10 rebounds, three assists and two steals in 38 minutes during Sunday's 106-105 loss to the Thunder.
The 28-year-old Italian set a new season high for scoring, but his big effort was overshadowed by Russell Westbrook setting a new NBA record for triple-doubles in a season opposite him. Gallinari's inability to stay healthy remains an issue -- he'll fail to play at least 70 games in 2016-17 for the third straight season -- but when he's on the court he's proven to be an effective scorer for the Nuggets.
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