Can't wait for the NBA playoffs to begin this weekend? Neither can the Denver Nuggets.
In fact, the team would be a lot better off simply forfeiting to the Utah Jazz in tonight's regular season finale than playing it, given the nagging injury issues plaguing the squad.
To put it bluntly, the Nuggets have precious little incentive going into tonight's matchup. They've already reached the fifty win benchmark and they are locked into the fifth playoff position -- and a win or loss won't have any impact on who they'll play. Moreover, as this CBSSports.com item documents, a slew of players would benefit from a little extra healing time. The rundown:
Wilson Chandler's been dealing with left ankle problems.
Timofey Mozgov's got issues with his left ankle and his knee.
Danilo Gallinari's tweaked his right ankle.
Chris Andersen's just returned after spraining his right ankle.
Arron Afflalo retweaked his hamstring the other night.
Nenê strained his right groin.
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According to the above post, Afflalo and Nenê are definite no-gos tonight, and while Kenyon Martin and Raymond Felton don't have specific wounds of grave concern, they'll be resting versus Utah, too. Gallinari might as well -- his participation is supposedly a game-time decision.
The result, in all likelihood, is plenty of playing time for the likes of Gary Forbes (who's looked pretty good of late) and Melvin Ely. But if Chandler, who's expected to take part, or any of the other important cogs in this machine get hurt in an utterly meaningless contest, we'll all be left wishing the Nugs had simply pretended they missed their flight to Salt Lake City.
More from our Sports archive: "Denver Nuggets-Oklahoma City Thunder playoff preview: It's gonna be a war! (VIDEO)."