The first half of the Denver Nuggets' season can be simply defined as a roller coaster.
On the positive side, the Nuggets have posted winning streaks of seven, five and three games. On the negative end, they lost four of their first five, went on an eight-game losing streak and have now lost four of their past five.
There are several reasons for this inconsistency, which has resulted in a 20-21 record, but perhaps none are more evident than the never-ending injuries.
Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports reported Tuesday that Danilo Gallinari will miss the remainder of the season after having reconstructive knee surgery for his ACL injury. Christopher Dempsey of The Denver Post mentioned how JaVale McGee is making progress in recovering from the stress fracture in his left tibia, but that it's coming slowly and there's still no timetable for his return.
Plenty of shorter absences have caused many starting lineup and rotation changes. J.J. Hickson, Nate Robinson and Timofey Mozgov are the only three guys to play all 41 contests.
When you throw in the new players, wrinkles in the system and this being Brian Shaw's first year as a head coach, there is a lot to digest on what is working and what isn't. Let's examine the specifics and what they mean for the team moving forward.