Wilson Chandler and Nuggets close to a long-term deal

With the finality of Wilson Chandler's self-imposed deadline (note: deadline not final) looming today, it appears he and the Nuggets are closing in on a long-term deal. From ESPN's Marc Stein comes the strongest signs yet that the restricted free agent will indeed sign to play in Denver for the foreseeable future. Stein reports the two sides are working on a five-year deal.

Chandler arrived in town Monday with his agent, Chris Luchey, to work on a contract while the Nuggets played an extended home stand. At the time, Chandler's camp had reportedly set today as a deadline to get a deal done or he would sit out the rest of the season or play in Italy.

But Stein's source says the deal will be done today at the earliest. One of his sources says the deal is "very, very close." The Denver Post's Benjamin Hochman reports that Chandler told him he expects the deal to be completed "Sunday or Monday."

Stein reports that the five-year deal could pay Chandler in excess of $30 million, an exceedingly fair amount in today's NBA culture of players and agents demanding excessive salaries and general managers stupidly caving.

Yesterday's trade of Nene to the Washington Wizards for center JaVale McGee and forward Ronny Turiaf freed up some extra cash the Nuggets can throw Chandler's way. Hochman reported that Nuggets GM Masai Ujiri plans to waive Turiaf to free up a roster spot for Chandler.

Chandler played in China during the lockout, and Luchey says he has been working out with his personal trainer, so he should be ready to join the team very shortly after he signs a deal. The Nuggets could use the extra body in contests against the Boston Celtics tomorrow night and defending champion Dallas Mavericks on Monday.

More from our Sports archive: "Nene traded to Washington for seven-foot knucklehead and future Nuggets flexibility."

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