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JaVale McGee finally ready to return for Nuggets

Denver Nuggets Media Day

Denver Nuggets Media Day

NBAE/Getty Images

JaVale McGee, who suffered a stress fracture and played just five games last season, was lagging behind the Nuggets’ other injured players this preseason.

Finally, McGee will make his long-awaited return to the court.

Christopher Dempsey of The Denver Post:

the Nuggets will get JaVale McGee back, either Wednesday against Portland or at Golden State on Friday.

The center has progressed to the point of taking part in full practices the last couple of times out, and he’s ready to get back on the court. He said the pain in his left tibia is down to a minimum, and he wants to get a game or two under his belt before the regular season begins.

McGee, who has had the added motivation of watching young center Jusuf Nurkic play well in his absence, will participate with a minute restriction, but he’ll play.

McGee started all five his games last year, a noted change after making zero starts the year prior. The Nuggets have invested heavily in McGee, and they want to see him work out.

Right now, he’s behind Timofey Mozgov and maybe even rookie Jusuf Nurkic. Denver has center depth, which should allow McGee to ease back into a bigger role.

If he returns to full health and better harnesses his physical talent, the Nuggets might actually be overstocked a center. Denver is a place to watch for trade possibilities.

But first things first, McGee has to play and then play well.