A week ago it was believed that the Denver Nuggets forward Wilson Chandler was going to play in Italy during the lockout. However, that all changed today when the fourth-year forward told ESPN’s J.A. Adande that he will play in China next season, which is a gamble since Chinese Basketball Association won’t allow its players to opt out during the season to return to the NBA. Which means that even if the lockout is lifted before the NBA season ends, Chandler won’t return to the NBA this season. However, as Adande points out, Chandler could rejoin the league on a prorated basis for part of the season if the NBA is played in April. Last season, the CBA finalists were finished in April.
However, unlike what many New York Knicks fans believe, it isn’t because he doesn’t want to play for the Nuggets. Chandler was quoted as saying,
I like [Denver], I like the team. Great young team. Coach [George] Karl is a great coach. I like the management. Hopefully I’m there.
It is a gamble that could pay off in the long run since the NBA lockout seems much further than the NFL lockout.
Chandler, who is only 24, averaged 12.5 points and five rebounds in 21 games with the Nuggets – after being dealt to Denver in the Carmelo Anthony trade.