Injuries surface as Nuggets prepare to face the L.A. Clippers

Denver expected to be without Faried, Robinson against the Los Angeles Clippers
by Aaron Lopez

The aches and pains of training camp are starting to surface at Pepsi Center.

The Nuggets headed to Las Vegas with a variety of players nursing injuries. Forward Kenneth Faried and guard Nate Robinson did not practice Friday because of hamstring strains, while forward Darrell Arthur sat out with a bruised left quad.

Faried and Robinson were listed as questionable for Saturday’s game against the Los Angeles Clippers; Arthur will be a game-time decision.

“It looks like we’re going to have a couple more guys down,” Denver coach Brian Shaw said. “Hate to be cliché, but it just means that it’s the next man up. It will be a good test for our guys to play against one of the teams that I think will be one of the elite teams in the league.”

Shaw hopes to have forward Wilson Chandler on the court for his preseason debut. Chandler missed the team’s first four preseason games while recovering from a strained left hamstring.

If healthy, Chandler would start at small forward on Saturday, along with point guard Ty Lawson, shooting guard Randy Foye, center JaVale McGee and power forward J.J. Hickson.

Ideally, Shaw would like to start establishing a playing rotation in the final two preseason games leading up to Denver’s regular-season opener Oct. 30 at Sacramento.

“It’s starting to come together,” Shaw said. “I want them to start developing a rhythm of when they’re going to be playing in the game, how many minutes they’re going to be playing, the combination of guys they’re going to be playing with.”

Faried and Hickson are vying for the starting spot, but both will be vital to Denver’s success throughout the season, regardless of how Shaw distributes playing time.

“Guys are getting more settled in and more comfortable with their roles and their positions,” Hickson said. “Towards the end of training camp and preseason, we’ll have a more clear vision what the rotation is going to be. Time will tell.”

Saturday’s game against the Clippers will be carried on NBA TV and the Altitude Radio Network.