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Heat: Goran Dragic (knee) and Derrick Jones Jr. (knee) are questionable.
Lakers: Mike Muscala (ankle) and Josh Hart (knee) are probable. Tyson Chandler (neck) is questionable.
Nets: Jared Dudley (hamstring) is available. Spencer Dinwiddie (thumb) is out.
Suns: TJ Warren (ankle) is out. De’Anthony Melton (ankle) will play.
Today’s NBA Matchups
Sacramento Kings (30-27) at Golden State Warriors (41-16)
Line: Warriors -13, O/U: 239
Kings: 113 ppg, bottom-third defense, second-fastest pace
Warriors: 119 ppg, average defense, faster than average pace
- Golden State won 16 of 17 games before losing in Portland to close the first half of the year.
- Kevin Durant, Klay Thompson, and Steph Curry all represented the Dubs at All-Star Weekend. Steph threw the bounce pass of the century to Giannis for a dunk but lost to Brooklyn’s Joe Harris in the three-point Contest.
- DeMarcus Cousins is about to start playing more minutes. He averaged 14 points, 6.5 rebounds, and 4 assists in 23 minutes per game in his first ten games with Golden State.
- The Kings acquired Harrison Barnes and Alec Burks to help Buddy Hield and De’Aaron Fox push this Sacramento team into the playoffs for the first time since 2005.
- Right now the Kings are a game behind the eighth-seeded Clippers who sold at the deadline, but they’re two games up on LeBron’s Lakers.
Houston Rockets (33-24) at Los Angeles Lakers (28-29)
Line: Rockets -3, O/U: 232
Lakers: 112 ppg, top ten defense, top five pace
Rockets: 112 ppg, bottom five defense, bottom five pace
- The Lakers lost four of their last five games before the All-Star break, the last one 117-113 in Atlanta.
- LeBron James averaged 27 points, 9 rebounds and 8 assists per game when healthy in the first half of the season.
- Kyle Kuzma is coming off of 35 points as the MVP of the Rising Stars game during All-Star Weekend.
- Brandon Ingram averaged 17 points per game to start the year.
- James Harden has acknowledged that his epic scoring streak isn’t sustainable or the best way to win a championship, but man is it fun. He averaged 37 points and 8 assists in the first half of the season, and his streak of games with 30+ points is second only to Wilt.
- Harden will finally get Clint Capela back. Capela averaged 18 points and 13 rebounds per game before his thumb injury.
- Iman Shumpert is out for the next two games at least with a knee issue.
Miami Heat (26-30) at Philadelphia 76ers (37-21)
Line: Sixers -6, O/U: 219
76ers: 116 ppg, above average defense, faster than average pace
Heat: 105 ppg, top ten defense, slower than average pace
- Joel Embiid is out with a sore left knee, and he’ll be reevaluated in a week. Embiid is averaging 27 points and 13.5 rebounds this year.
- The Sixers will probably replace their best player by committee, and hopefully with plentiful Boban minutes.
- Tobias Harris scored 25 points in their last win before the break, his most so far as a Sixer. He’s averaging 21 points and 8 rebounds per game this season.
- Ben Simmons played in his first All-Star Game, earning the spot by averaging 17 points, 9 rebounds and 8 assists in the first half.
- The Heat are stumbling toward the bottom of the Eastern Conference playoff bracket.
- Goran Dragic has been cleared to play after missing most of the season, but Eric Spoelstra wants him to practice more before he gets back into game action.
- Dwyane Wade played in his last All-Star Game, throwing one last iconic lob to his friend LeBron for old times’ sake.
Phoenix Suns (11-48) at Cleveland Cavaliers (12-46)
Line: Suns -1, O/U: 220.5
Cavaliers: 103 ppg, worst defense in the NBA, bottom five pace
Suns: 106 ppg, bottom five defense, average pace
- The most interesting part of this game is that Tristan Thompson, who is out with a foot injury, allegedly cheated on Khloe Kardashian with Devin Booker’s ex Jordyn Woods. So that’s fun.
- The Cavs have won three of their last eight games, which qualifies as scorching hot for them.
- Kevin Love is finally back, but he’ll be on a minutes restriction for a good long while.
- The Suns have lost 15 games in a row to establish themselves among the league’s worst.
- Devin Booker averaged 25 points, 7 assists and 4 rebounds in the first half of the season.
- Rookie top pick Deandre Ayton posted 16.5 points and 10.5 rebounds per game to start the season.
Portland Trail Blazers (33-22) at Brooklyn Nets (30-29)
Line: Blazers -2, O/U: 229
Nets: 111.5 ppg, below average defense, below average pace
Trail Blazers: 113 ppg, average defense, below average pace
- The Nets are one of the streakiest teams in the league, and they finished the first half with a triple overtime win over Cleveland.
- All-Star D’Angelo Russell is averaging 25 points, 7 assists and 4 rebounds in his last ten.
- Allen Crabbe and Caris LeVert are both back after missing extended time.
- Damian Lillard is questionable after spraining his ankle. It’s unclear if he did it in the All-Star Game, where he scored 18 points in 25 minutes. He averaged 26 points, 6 assists and 4.5 rebounds per game in the first half.
- Rodney Hood is averaging 11 points off the bench so far with his new team, and probable for this game despite dealing with an illness.
- Jusuf Nurkic’s last ten games: 16 points, 9 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 blocks.
Boston Celtics (37-21) at Milwaukee Bucks (43-14)
Line: Bucks -5.5, O/U: 229
Celtics: 113 ppg, top five defense, slower than average pace
Bucks: 117 ppg, best defense in the NBA, very fast pace
- The Bucks won eight of their last nine before the All-Star Game, where Giannis Antetokounmpo had 38 points, 11 boards, and five assists
- The Greek Freak is averaging 27 points, 13 rebounds, and 6 assists this season, and fellow All-Star Khris Middleton is putting up 17 points, six boards and four assists.
- Nikola Mirotic is expected to make his Bucks debut. He averaged 17 points and eight boards per game this year when healthy with the Pelicans.
- The Celtics won 12 of their last 15 games before the All-Star break.
- Kyrie Irving had 13 points in the All-Star Game, and he averaged 24 points, seven assists and five rebounds per game before it.
- Gordon Hayward twisted his ankle on Tuesday and is questionable for this one. He averaged 11 points, five rebounds and 3.5 assists per game in the first half of the season.