Danilo Gallinari needs to move from “allegedly” great to “truly” great

Oct 18, 2015; Oklahoma City, OK, USA; Denver Nuggets forward Danilo Gallinari (8) passes the ball in front of Oklahoma City Thunder center Steven Adams (12) during the second quarter at Chesapeake Energy Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

During the 2015 offseason, Denver Nuggets general manager Tim Connelly made it a point to secure his roster for both the immediate and the not-too-distant future by locking up three key players with contract extensions: Danilo Gallinari, Wilson Chandler and Jameer Nelson.

The moves have been widely praised, as an influx of cash due to next year’s salary cap expansion could have made the three of them very rich in other markets. But Gil Whiteley, radio host on Mile High Sports AM 1340 and longtime Nuggets observer, isn’t so sure the Gallinari signing was a wise investment.

“Gallo is too close to being a max [contract] guy for someone who only plays 50 games a year,” he told David Ramsey of the Colorado Springs Gazette, a guest on Whiteley’s radio show on the day the Nuggets tip off the 2015-16 season.

Ramsey wrote in the Gazette (registration required) that the resigning of Gallinari sends a big message about the Nuggets to the NBA.

“Signing Gallinari says the Nuggets aren’t planning to tank like some people think they should,” he told Whiteley.

Still, like Whiteley, he isn’t convinced that Gallinari is the “truly” great player he’s often described as, suggesting instead that he’s merely “allegedly” great. Ramsey points to the fact that Gallinari has not shot over 42 percent as a Nugget. A stat Whiteley reinforced with Gallinari’s .358 three-point shooting percentage with Denver.

On the eve of the Nuggets’ first game, a matchup with the Houston Rockets, they also discussed how Emmanuel Mudiay and Ty Lawson will match up in the battle of current and former Denver point guards.

Listen to the full discussion about Gallinari, Mudiay and Lawson, plus a history lesson about Telluride, in the podcast below.

Catch Gil Whiteley every weekday from 11a-1p on Mile High Sports AM 1340 or stream live any time for the best local coverage of what’s new and what’s next in Colorado sports.

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