NBA Projected Starting Lineups, Matchups, Injury News – 1/27/19

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Injury News

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Bucks: Donte DiVincenzo (heel) is out.

Bulls: Zach LaVine (ankle) and Lauri Markkanen (hip) are out.

Cavaliers: Tristan Thompson (foot) and David Nwaba (ankle) are out.

Clippers: Danilo Gallinari (back) and Luc Mbah a Moute (knee) are out.

Heat: Tyler Johnson (ankle) is day-to-day.

Jazz: None

Kings: None

Knicks: Emmanuel Mudiay (shoulder) is out.

Lakers: Kyle Kuzma (hip) is questionable. Lonzo Ball (ankle) is expected to miss 4-6 weeks. Rajon Rondo (hand) is back. LeBron James(groin) remains out.

Magic: Mo Bamba (illness) is day-to-day. Isaiah Briscoe (ankle) is questionable.

Mavericks: None

Raptors: Danny Green (hand) is questionable.

Rockets: Chris Paul (hamstring) is expected to return. Brandon Knight (knee) is questionable. Clint Capela (thumb) remains out.

Spurs: LaMarcus Aldridge (wrist) and DeMar DeRozan (knee) are day to day. Rudy Gay (ankle) will play. Davis Bertans (personal) is out.

Suns: Deandre Ayton (ankle) and Richaun Holmes (foot) are questionable. TJ Warren (ankle) and De’Anthony Melton (ankle) is out.

Thunder: None

Timberwolves: Jeff Teague (foot) and Tyus Jones (ankle) are out. Derrick Rose (ankle) is questionable. Gorgui Dieng (hip) is probable.

Wizards: Ian Mahinmi is probable

Today’s NBA Matchups

Cleveland Cavaliers (9-41) at Chicago Bulls (11-38)

Line: Bulls -5, O/U: 210

Bulls: 101 ppg, bottom ten defense, slower than average pace

Cavaliers: 103 ppg, worst defense in the NBA, bottom five pace


  • The Bulls are 1-11 in January, and the only win came against this Cleveland squad who they should be racing to the bottom.
  • Zach LaVine on the year: 23 points, 4 rebounds and 4 assists per game.
  • In basketball hell, you have League Pass, but this is the only game on.
  • Cleveland has lost six straight and gone 1-18 going back over a month, and only one of those losses was closer than five points.
  • Tristan Thompson is far and away their best player, and he’s expected to be out for the next two weeks or so. Ante Zizic is averaging 16 points and 8 rebounds per game in his last five.
  • Cedi Osman is having some fun, putting in 27 points per game in his last two.

Sacramento Kings (25-24) at Los Angeles Clippers (27-22)

Line: Clippers -5, O/U: 230

Clippers: 114 ppg, below average defense, fast pace

Kings: 113 ppg, bottom-third defense, second-fastest pace


  • The Clippers just capped off a 3-1 road trip with a 106-101 win in Chicago.
  • Tobias Harris had 29 points and 8 rebounds in that game, and Lou Williams got his first ever triple-double off the bench with 31, 10 and 10.
  • Danilo Gallinari is out for the fifth straight game with a back injury, and he’s the second leading scorer on this team.
  • The Kings are 2-3 on this road trip so far, with wins coming against struggling teams in Detroit and Memphis.
  • De’Aaron Fox missed Tuesday’s loss in Toronto with a sore toe, but came back for 22 points, 5 assists and 6 rebounds in the 99-96 win over the Grizzlies on Friday. He’s averaging 17 points and 7 assists per game this year.
  • Buddy Hield is averaging 20 points per game this season shooting 48% from the floor and 44% from deep.

Washington Wizards (21-27) at San Antonio Spurs (28-22)

Line: Spurs -4, O/U: 221

Spurs: 111 ppg, average defense, very slow pace

Wizards: bad defense, faster than average pace


  • The Spurs have cooled off a bit, but they defeated a banged-up Pelicans squad yesterday 126-114.
  • LaMarcus Aldridge led the way with 28 and 12 in that game, playing through a sore wrist.
  • DeMar DeRozan missed yesterday’s win in New Orleans due to left knee soreness, and he’s been slumping to start the new year.
  • On the other hand, Derrick White has been playing the best basketball of his young career, averaging 14 points, 4 assists and 4 rebounds this month while normally drawing the toughest defensive assignment.
  • Rudy Gay, Bryn Forbes, Patty Mills, and Marco Belinelli, are all averaging 10+ points in January.
  • The Wizards are 8-5 since losing John Wall for the season a month ago, and they’ve played top-ten defense in that stretch.
  • Tomas Satoransky has started every game in January, averaging 11 points, 5 rebounds and 6 assists.
  • Bradley Beal is averaging 28 points, 6 rebounds and 6 assists per game in January.
  • Trevor Ariza and Otto Porter are both averaging 15 points and 6 rebounds this month.
  • Washington is just 6-18 on the road this season.

Orlando Magic (20-29) at Houston Rockets (28-20)

Line: Rockets -8, O/U: 221

Rockets: 112 ppg, bottom five defense, bottom five pace

Magic: 104 ppg, average defense, slow pace


  • James Harden is averaging 45 points, 8.5 rebounds and 7 assists in his last ten, including performances of 57, 58, and 61. He had 35 and forced Kawhi to miss a game-winning three to beat Toronto, even though he shot just 2-13 from deep.
  • Reinforcements are coming, as Chris Paul is expected to return after missing more than a month with a hamstring injury.
  • Kenneth Faried was just acquired to fill in for Clint Capela, and he put up 21 points and 14 boards against the Raptors.
  • Orlando has lost four of their last five and is now nine games under .500, but don’t count them out of the playoffs just yet in the East.
  • Over the last ten games, Nikola Vucevic is averaging 21 points, 12 rebounds, 4 assists, and 1 block.

Utah Jazz (28-22) at Minnesota Timberwolves (24-25)

Line: Jazz -4, O/U: 219

Timberwolves: 112 ppg, below average defense, faster than average pace

Jazz: 108 ppg, top five defense, average pace


  • Minnesota has been up and down, 5-4 since Ryan Saunders took over as head coach.
  • January Timberwolves leaders: Karl-Anthony Towns: 26 points, 13 boards, and 2 blocks, Andrew Wiggins: 21 points, 6 rebounds, Derrick Rose: 17 points, 4 assists.
  • Jeff Teague is questionable for this one with a foot injury, and he’s averaging 11.5 points and 8 assists this year. Derrick Rose and Tyus Jones are both dealing with ankle injuries. Jerryd Bayless started at the point in the last game, putting up 11 points, 8 rebounds, and 5 assists.
  • The Jazz have won eight of their last nine, including 106-102 at home against this Timberwolves team on Friday.
  • Rudy Gobert put up 18 points, 16 boards, and 4 blocks in that win, and he’s averaging 17, 15 and 3 in his last five.
  • Donovan Mitchell’s last ten: 30 points, 6 assists, 5 rebounds per game.
  • Ricky Rubio posted 17 points and 6 assists in his first start since returning from a hamstring injury but shot just 2-10 the next game.

Toronto Raptors (36-15) at Dallas Mavericks (22-26) 

Line: Raptors -5, O/U: 219

Mavericks: 110 ppg, average defense, average pace

Raptors: 114 ppg, above average defense, average pace


  • The Mavs had lost seven of their last nine before beating the Clippers and Pistons to start this homestand.
  • Luka Doncic is coming off of 32 points, 8 assists and 8 rebounds in the win over Detroit.
  • Dennis Smith Jr. has put up an average of 18 points his last two games after returning from spending six games away from the team, apparently unhappy with his role next to Doncic. Things seem to be working themselves out, though.
  • Dallas is 18-6 at home this season.
  • The Raptors had won three straight with Kawhi Leonard resting but lost to the Pacers with him on the bench. He came back for a big game against the Rockets, but James Harden locked him up on the last play and his winning three came up way short.
  • Kyle Lowry has posted 15 points, 8 assists and 5 rebounds per game in his last five.
  • Danny Green is questionable with a hand injury, averaging 14 points per game in his last ten.

Miami Heat (23-24) at New York Knicks (10-37)

Line: Heat -5, O/U: 210

Knicks: 107 ppg, second-worst defense in the NBA, average pace

Heat: 106 ppg, top ten defense, slower than average pace


  • The Knicks have lost 16 of their last 17 and eight straight, which seems to be the plan moving forward.
  • Enes Kanter did not play in the last two games and wants to either play or be traded. When asked if he was worried about that becoming a distraction, Coach Fizdale responded, “What are we gonna do, lose some more games?”
  • Miami had lost four of their last five but bounced back with a much-needed win in Cleveland.
  • Hassan Whiteside is coming off of 14 points and 13 rebounds in that one, averaging 13 and 12 this year.
  • Tyler Johnson sprained his ankle, and he’s listed as day-to-day. He’s averaging 13 points and 4 assists in his last five.

Phoenix Suns (11-40) at Los Angeles Lakers (25-24)

Line: Lakers -7.5, O/U: 224

Lakers: 112 ppg, top ten defense, top five pace

Suns: 106 ppg, bottom five defense, average pace


  • This hobbled Lakers team has lost three in a row,
  •  Kyle Kuzma has 21 points and 6 rebounds per game in January, but he’s questionable for this one with a hip injury.
  • Lonzo Ball suffered a Grade 3 ankle sprain earlier in the week, and he’s expected to miss at least four weeks. He had averaged 11 points, 6.5 rebounds and 6.5 assists in January.
  • Rajon Rondo missed most of the last two months, but scored 15 points and added 13 assists in his return.
  • The Lakers are 5-10 since LeBron’s groin injury. He’s out for this one but could be back soon. This is the longest stretch he has missed due to injury in his entire career.
  • Brandon Ingram is averaging 19 points per game over his last three.
  • The Suns are 2-14 in the last month, including seven straight losses.
  • Phoenix has been without Deandre Ayton and Richaun Holmes, dealing with ankle and foot sprains respectively. They’re both questionable for this one.
  • Dragan Bender is averaging 14 points and 7 rebounds as the starting center by necessity.
  • TJ Warren is out with an ankle injury, and he’s averaging 18 points per game.

Marquee Matchup

Milwaukee Bucks (35-12) at Oklahoma City Thunder (30-18)

Line: Bucks -1, O/U: 235

Thunder: 113 ppg, best defense in the NBA, top five pace

Bucks: 117 ppg, best defense in the NBA, very fast pace


  • The Thunder had lost five of seven but bounced back with four straight wins.
  • Paul George‘s last five games: 30 points, 7 rebounds, 6 assists, 3 steals.
  • Russell Westbrook put up 23 points, 17 rebounds, and 16 assists in a win over New Orleans on Thursday.
  • Oklahoma City started the year with the top defense in the NBA but giving up over 120 points per game in January. That’s 29th in the league ahead of only Cleveland.
  • Milwaukee has won six in a row, and eight of their last ten.
  • Giannis Antetokounmpo is the All-Star captain from the Eastern Conference. He’s averaging 27 points on 58% shooting, 13 rebounds, 6 assists, 1.5 blocks, and 1 steal per game.
  • Eric Bledsoe, Malcom Brogdon, and Khris Middleton are each averaging 16+ ppg in January.
Daily previews of matchups to watch around the league, and film breakdowns of the best performance from the night before. Twitter @RealTomPetrini, Spurs interviews and analysis @projectspurs.

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