NBA Projected Starting Lineups, Matchups, Injury News – 12/18/18

Injury News

For the most up to date injury information, click here.

Cavs: None

Hawks: Miles Plumlee (knee), Omari Spellman (hip), and Alex Poythress (G League) are out.

Lakers: Brandon Ingram (ankle) and Rajon Rondo (hand) are out. JaVale McGee (illness) missed Sunday’s loss in Washington.

Mavericks: JJ Barea (ankle) plans to play. Dennis Smith Jr. (wrist) is day to day.

Nets: Allen Crabbe (knee) is questionable.

Nuggets: Will Barton (groin) is out. Juan Hernangomez (abdominal) is questionable.

Pacers: Tyreke Evans (knee) is a game-time decision.

Wizards: Otto Porter Jr. (knee) is out.

Today’s NBA Matchups

Indiana Pacers (20-10) vs. Cleveland Cavaliers (7-23)

Line: Pacers -12.5, O/U: 207

Pacers: 107 ppg, second-ranked defense, bottom-five pace

Cavaliers: 103 ppg, worst defense in the NBA, third-slowest pace

Notes:

  • The Pacers have won seven straight games, sporting a league-best defense over the stretch.
  • Victor Oladipo has played three games since his return to the floor, and dropped 26 points, 8 rebounds, 7 assists, and 5 steals in his last game.
  • The Cavs won just three games in November, but have already won three in December including two of their last five. That qualifies as scorching hot for this Cleveland team.

Washington Wizards (12-18) at Atlanta Hawks (6-23)

Line: Wizards -3, O/U: 236.5

Wizards: 113 ppg, third-worst defense, fast pace

Hawks: 108.5 ppg, fourth-worst defense, fastest pace in NBA

Notes:

  • John Wall dropped 40 points and 14 delicious assists on the Lakers Sunday night, snapping a four-game slide.
  • The Wizards have only four road wins, but the Hawks only have four home wins.
  • The last time these teams played on December 5th, the Wizards won 131-117.
  • Over the last seven games, Atlanta and Washington are giving up an average of 124 and 116 points per game, respectively.
  • Otto Porter is missing his fourth-straight with a knee injury, and Trevor Ariza may make his debut with the club.

Los Angeles Lakers(18-12) at Brooklyn Nets (13-18)

Line: Lakers -2, O/U:  228

Lakers: 113 ppg, 11th-ranked defense, third-fastest pace

Nets: 111 ppg, 22nd-ranked defense, slower than average pace

Notes:

  • Don’t sleep on the Nets. They’ve won five straight games, including impressive victories over Toronto and the Sixers. Brooklyn is averaging 123 points per game during the streak.
  • D’Angelo Russell added 32 points, 7 dimes and 6 rebounds in the last win over Atlanta.
  • Allen Crabbe might miss this one, but Latvian rookie Rodions Kurucs has averaged 13 points, 6 boards, and 2.5 assists in the last two games.
  • The Lakers had won four straight, including getting triple doubles from both LeBron and Lonzo in the same game, but then they got blown out by Washington the next night.
  • For an extended preview, click here.

Marquee Matchup

Denver Nuggets (20-9) vs. Dallas Mavericks (15-13)

Line: Nuggets -5.5, O/U: 207

Nuggets: 109 ppg, fourth-ranked defense, fourth-slowest pace

Mavericks: 110 ppg, top-ten defense, average pace

Notes:

  • Nikola Jokic is averaging 18 points, 10 rebounds and 7.5 assists per game, on track to be the first Nugget All-Star since Carmelo Anthony in 2011. He’s scored 24+ in the last four games.
  • Teen prodigy Luka Doncic is making a case for an All-Star bid as well, and certainly rookie of the year. He’s averaging 18 points, 7 rebounds, and 5 assists.
  • The Nuggets are 12-3 at home, and the Mavs are over .500 despite being a miserable 2-10 on the road.
  • Dennis Smith Jr. is listed as questionable, and rookie guard Jalen Brunson has averaged 12 points and 3 assists in 27 minutes per game over his last five.
  • Dallas has lost their last two, and the Nuggets have won their last three over Memphis, Oklahoma City, and Toronto.
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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