The Denver Nuggets are off to a disappointing 3-7 start, but they reportedly bolstered their depth on the wing Tuesday by signing free agent Alonzo Gee, per Chris Dempsey of the Denver Post.
Shams Charania of The Vertical first cited sources who said the Nuggets were finalizing a deal with Gee.
This comes after the New Orleans Pelicans waived the 6’6" forward before the regular season began.
While Gee was undrafted out of the University of Alabama, he has appeared in 404 regular-season games for the Washington Wizards, Cleveland Cavaliers, San Antonio Spurs, Nuggets, Portland Trail Blazers and Pelicans.
He played 39 games for Denver in 2014-15 before it traded him and teammate Arron Afflalo to the Portland Trail Blazers for the stretch run of the season. He has never been able to replicate the numbers he put up in a Cavaliers uniform, but he did average 4.9 points and 1.8 rebounds per game as a member of the Nuggets:
Alonzo Gee’s Career Per-Game Stats
Season Team Games Points Rebounds Assists Field-Goal Percentage 2009-10 Washington Wizards 11 7.4 3.0 0.6 47.5 2010-11 San Antonio Spurs/Washington Wizards/Cleveland Cavaliers 56 5.9 3.3 0.7 45.8 2011-12 Cleveland Cavaliers 63 10.6 5.1 1.8 41.2 2012-13 Cleveland Cavaliers 82 10.3 3.9 1.6 41 2013-14 Cleveland Cavaliers 65 4.0 2.3 0.7 41.5 2014-15 Denver Nuggets/Portland Trail Blazers 54 4.5 1.7 0.5 46.8 2015-16 New Orleans Pelicans 73 4.5 3.4 1.0 51.8
Gee’s offensive numbers aren’t enough to change the course of the season for the Nuggets, but he is an impressive defender who is athletic enough to keep up with quicker ball-handlers and tall enough to bother outside shooters.
According to NBA.com, opposing shooters shot 7.9 percent worse than their normal averages from the field and seven percent worse from three-point range when Gee guarded them in 2014-15.
In addition to that defense, Gee will help the team remain afloat while Gary Harris nurses his foot injury. Nuggets coach Michael Malone told Dempsey that Harris could be out for as many as four weeks.
What’s more, Will Barton is dealing with an ankle sprain, and Wilson Chandler suffered a hamstring injury.
Denver needs additional healthy bodies on the wing, especially this early in the season with so many games remaining. Gee will provide just that and serve as a capable defender who can score in double figures on a given night.