Denver Nuggets close to locking up Wilson Chandler after dealing Nene

The Denver Nuggets traded Nene yesterday, and in return they received JaVale McGee from the Washington Wizards. But, what they maybe also got out of the deal, was the financial space necessary to lock Wilson Chandler up long-term. Chandler had been in China hooping away in anonymity as the Lockout ended and the NBA season began, but now he’s back. Sources say he’s about to get paid too, and close to being kept stateside as a member of the Denver Nuggets for the foreseeable future.

Denver Nuggets forward Wilson Chandler (R) recovers a loose ball past Oklahoma City Thunder center Nick Collison (on floor) and center Nazr Mohammed in Game 3 of their NBA Western Conference basketball playoffs in Denver April 23, 2011.

This according to Marc Stein:

Final parameters are still being discussed, sources said, but one scenario on the table is a five-year deal worth in excess of $30 million with a team option in the fifth year.

After trading away veteran center Nene earlier in the day, Denver had more financial flexibility to offer the long-term deal Chandler has been seeking since returning from a stint in China earlier this month.

Denver signed Nene to a five-year deal worth nearly $70 million in free agency in December but quietly decided to start seeking trades for the oft-injured center in recent weeks to ensure it would have the down-the-road flexibility to bring back Chandler and retain prized point guard Ty Lawson when Lawson is eligible for an extension.

When March 1 passed without Chandler receiving an offer sheet from another team, his only options for this season were to re-sign with the Nuggets or sit out the rest of the season and become a restricted free agent again in July.

This has gotta be a positive development if you’re a member of the Chandler camp. Couple months ago you’re in the CBA, now you’re staring lucrative deal directly in it’s dotted line. Your only option is to sign with the Nuggets or not play, and it is those same Nuggets are offering you $30 million.

Then again it’s probably also smart of the Nuggets to try to make this long-term deal with Chandler now too while they have some leverage. Hopefully it works out okay for both camps, and if Wilson needs to hire a ghost blogger or something after he signs that deal feel free to get at me on that. I’m available.

About Brendan Bowers

I am the founding editor of I am also a content strategist and social media manager with Electronic Merchant Systems in Cleveland. My work has been published in SLAM Magazine, KICKS Magazine, The Locker Room Magazine,,, and elsewhere. I've also written a lot of articles that have been published here.