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Bucks: Sterling Brown (wrist) is out. George Hill (groin) is probable.
Bulls: Otto Porter Jr. (knee) is probable.
Clippers: Danilo Gallinari (ankle) is questionable. Luc Mbah a Moute (knee) is out.
Heat: Dwyane Wade (elbow) is questionable.
Hornets: Cody Zeller (knee) is doubtful. Michael Kidd Gilchrist (knee) is probable.
Kings: Marvin Bagley III (knee sprain) is back.
Knicks: Dennis Smith Jr. (back) is questionable. Mario Hezonja (knee) is probable.
Pelicans: Jrue Holiday (abdominal strain) and E’Twaun Moore (quad) are out.
Pistons: Reggie Jackson (ankle) is day-to-day. Bruce Brown (ankle) is probable.
76ers: Ben Simmons (illness) and Mike Scott (illness) are probable.
Spurs: Rudy Gay (illness) is expected to play.
Suns: Tyler Johnson (knee) is questionable.
Trail Blazers: Seth Curry (illness) and Mo Harkless (knee) are questionable. Rodney Hood (hip) is probable.
Wizards: Trevor Ariza (knee) is a game-time decision.
Today’s NBA Matchups
Charlotte Hornets (30-37) at Washington Wizards (29-39)
Line: Wizards -3.5, O/U: 233
Wizards: 114 ppg, bad defense, faster than average pace
Hornets: 111 ppg, below average defense, average pace.
- Neither of these teams deserves to be in the playoffs, but both can get there if they win some games down the stretch.
- Bradley Beal is a huge reason why these Wizards are over-performing, averaging 29, 7 and 7 in his last ten.
- Trevor Ariza is dealing with a sore right knee, and he’ll be a game-time call tonight.
- The Hornets are 4-11 in the last 15, coming off a 118-106 loss in Houston on Monday.
- Kemba Walker poured in 40 points, 7 assists and 10 boards in the loss. He’s a streaky volume scorer, excellent on some nights and a detriment on others.
Chicago Bulls (19-50) at Los Angeles Clippers (39-30)
Line: Clippers -9, O/U: 229
Clippers: 114 ppg, below average defense, fast pace
Bulls: 104 ppg, bottom ten defense, slower than average pace
- The Clippers had won five in a row before understandably losing to the Blazers on the second night of a back-to-back.
- Danilo Gallinari missed the loss, and he’s questionable for tonight with an ankle issue. He’s averaging 22 points and 6 rebounds in his last ten.
- Lou Williams has been a driving force of this team’s success, and he had 18 in the loss but shot just 5-16 from the floor.
- The Bulls had started putting things together, but they’ve lost four of the last five.
- Zach LaVine is averaging 29, 5 and 5 in the last ten, but he missed two in a row. He’s listed as probable tonight.
- Lauri Markkanen has hit a tough skid recently, averaging 5 points per game fewer than his season average and shooting just 36%.
Los Angeles Lakers (31-37) at Detroit Pistons (34-33)
Line: Pistons -11, O/U: 217
Pistons: 107 ppg, above average defense, average pace
Lakers: 112 ppg, top ten defense, top five pace
- The Pistons had won 12 of 14, but they got blown out by an average of 31 points in Brooklyn and Miami to teams they’re fighting for position within the East.
- Andre Drummond and Blake Griffin shot a combined 11-36 from the floor in those games.
- The Lakers have lost eight of their last ten, including last night in Toronto by a score of 111-98.
- LeBron had 29 in that game, and he’s averaging 30 points, 9 assists and 8 boards in his last ten.
- Lonzo Ball and Brandon Ingram are both done for the year, and so are the Lakers.
Milwaukee Bucks (51-17) at Miami Heat (32-35)
Line: Bucks -5.5, O/U: 220
Heat: 105 ppg, top ten defense, slower than average pace
Bucks: 117 ppg, best defense in the NBA, very fast pace
- The Heat have won five of six, and they just dismembered Detroit 108-74.
- Hassan Whiteside and Goran Dragic are both coming off the bench right now for Miami.
- Dwyane Wade is questionable with a sore elbow tonight, averaging 14, 4 and 4 on the year.
- The Bucks are the first team to 50 wins this year, pretty much crushing it in every imaginable way.
- Giannis Antetokounmpo is averaging 27 points, 13 boards and 6 assists this year, and he’s been remarkably consistent the entire season.
- Fellow All-Star Khris Middleton is coming off 23 points, 7 assists and 5 rebounds ina 130-113 win over New Orleans.
- Pau Gasol is a tremendous defensive liability at this point and has yet to be effective in Milwaukee. He hasn’t played in two of the last three, and he was -20 in 15 minutes in a loss to the Spurs.
New York Knicks (13-55) at San Antonio Spurs (39-29)
Line: Spurs -13.5, O/U: 215
Spurs: 112 ppg, below average defense, very slow pace
Knicks: 105 ppg, second-worst defense in the NBA, average pace
- The Spurs are 6-0 since finishing their 1-7 Rodeo Road Trip, coming off a 112-105 win in Dallas.
- DeMar DeRozan led the way with 33 points, 6 assists, 4 rebounds, and 4 steals. He’s averaging 24 points, 6 assists, 6 rebounds, and 2 steals on 55% shooting since the All-Star break.
- Derrick White gave Luka Doncic the business, holding him to 12 points and 9 turnovers while adding 23 points, 7 assists, and 3 steals.
- LaMarcus Aldridge is averaging 28 points and 10 rebounds in his last five games, shooting 57% from the floor.
- The Knicks have lost seven games in a row, but one of their most recent wins came against these Spurs last month.
- Dennis Smith Jr. is averaging 13 points and 6 assists in his last ten, and he’s questionable tonight with a sore back.
- DeAndre Jordan is averaging 12 points and 14 boards in his last ten, and he played 35 minutes in the last game.
Phoenix Suns (16-53) at Houston Rockets (42-26)
Line: Rockets -13, O/U: 224
Rockets: 113 ppg, bottom five defense, bottom five pace
Suns: 106 ppg, bottom five defense, average pace
- The Rockets had won nine in a row but lost a close one to the Warriors 106-104.
- James Harden had 29 points and 10 assists in the loss, but he shot just 2-12 from three.
- Chris Paul added 24, and Clint Capela and Eric Gordon both scored in double figures, but Houston shot 11-40 asa team from deep.
- The Suns are 5-5 in their last ten, even beating the Warriors.
- Devin Booker is averaging 30 points, 7 assists and 5 rebounds in his last five, shooting 46% from deep.
- Deandre Ayton puts up 16 and 10 a game, but he managed just 2 points in a 114-97 loss to the Jazz.
Portland Trail Blazers (41-26) at New Orleans Pelicans (30-40)
Line: Blazers -7.5, O/U: 234
Pelicans: 116 ppg, bottom five defense, top five pace
Trail Blazers: 114 ppg, average defense, below average pace
- The Pelicans have lost four straight, which is what they should be doing at this point.
- Anthony Davis only plays 20 minutes if he does play. He’s still put up 17 and 9 over the last five.
- The team seemed to rally around Jrue Holiday and play really well, but he’s missed the last three with an ab strain.
- Julius Randle has averaged 24.5 points, 7 boards, and 4 assists in the last ten games.
- The Blazers have won seven of their last ten, most recently 125-104 over the Clippers in LA.
- CJ McCollum put up 35 points in the win. After a stretch where his scoring was really up and down, he’s now scored 25+ in four in a row.
- Damian Lillard had 20 points and 12 assists while Jusuf Nurkic added 20 points and 12 boards.
Sacramento Kings (33-34) at Philadelphia 76ers (43-25)
Line: Sixers -9, O/U: 232
76ers: 116 ppg, above average defense, faster than average pace
Kings: 113 ppg, bottom-third defense, second-fastest pace
- Joel Embiid had 33 points and 12 rebounds in his return from a knee injury that has kept him out for a few weeks. He followed it up with 17 points, 19 rebounds, 5 assists and 4 blocks in a win over Cleveland.
- Ben Simmons put up 26 points, 10 boards and 8 dimes in that one. He’s dealing with an illness but listed as probable tonight.
- Tobias Harris‘ scoring is a bit down in the last five games. He was the number 1 guy in LA, and he pretty much brought his 21 point and 8 rebound averages to Philly at the start.
- The Kings have lost three of their last four, including 126-120 yesterday in Boston. They now sit five games out of the playoffs with 15 to play.
- Buddy Hield led the Kings with 34 points and 7 dimes in yesterday’s loss, and Harrison Barnes added 20 points.
- De’Aaron Fox had another complete game with 19 points, 9 assists, 7 boards, and 3 steals.
- Rookie Marvin Bagley III returned to the court after a scary knee sprain a few weeks ago. He put up 14 points and 6 boards in 19 minutes.