NBA News & Fantasy Basketball Notes 2/26

Feb 26th 2023

Connor Learn

Each day, this column will provide live updates for all NBA news. Enjoy up-to-the-minute alerts for injuries and lineup confirmations. The Key News to Watch section will highlight notable injuries to monitor for the current NBA slate.

Key NBA News to Watch

  • Giannis Antetokounmpo (quad) — Out

  • LeBron James (foot) — In

  • Anthony Davis (foot) — In

  • Fred VanVleet (personal) — Out

  • Jamal Murray (foot) — Available

  • Aaron Gordon (rib) — Available

  • Michael Porter Jr. (injury management) — Available

  • Rudy Gobert (illness) — Out

  • D'Angelo Russell (ankle) — Out

  • Draymond Green (knee) — Out

  • John Collins (back) — Available

Recent NBA News

Follow us on Twitter at @Underdog__NBA for notifications.

Phoenix Suns News

Confirmed Lineup: Chris Paul, Devin Booker, Josh Okogie, Torrey Craig, Deandre Ayton

  • Kevin Durant (knee) — Injured

  • Landry Shamet (foot) — Injured

Milwaukee Bucks News

Confirmed Lineup: Jrue Holiday, Jevon Carter, Grayson Allen, Bobby Portis, Brook Lopez

  • Giannis Antetokounmpo (quad) — Out

  • Pat Connaughton (calf) — Not on injury report

  • Wesley Matthews (calf) — Injured

Portis played 11.3 first-half minutes despite playing well after Antetokounmpo was injured in the first quarter of Friday's blowout win, suggesting he could remain restricted Sunday. However, Portis should be increasingly featured in the offense along with Holiday and Lopez, provided Khris Middleton continues to come off the bench.

Brooklyn Nets News

Confirmed Lineup: Spencer Dinwiddie, Mikal Bridges, Cam Johnson, Dorian Finney-Smith, Nic Claxton

  • Ben Simmons (knee) — Injured

Through the four games that Bridges and Johnson have been available, Bridges (27.6%), Johnson (23.1%), and Dinwiddie (20.7%) have led Brooklyn's starters in usage.

Atlanta Hawks News

Confirmed Lineup: Trae Young, Dejounte Murray, De'Andre Hunter, John Collins, Clint Capela

  • John Collins (back) — Available

Saddiq Bey should continue to start and play increased minutes with Jalen Johnson if Collins remains out. The Nets have registered the eighth-worst offensive rating (112.0) league-wide since Kyrie Irving last played for them, but the Hawks have allowed the third-most points per 100 possessions (115.0) to teams with bottom-ten offensive ratings this season.

Washington Wizards News

Confirmed Lineup: Delon Wright, Bradley Beal, Deni Avdija, Kyle Kuzma, Daniel Gafford

  • Monte Morris (back) — Out

  • Kristaps Porzingis (knee) — Out

Gafford has averaged 12.3 points, 7.9 rebounds, and 25.8 minutes in games Porzingis has missed this season. He's averaged reduced stats in 17.6 minutes per game with Porzingis active. Beal (29.6%) and Kuzma (25.4%) led the Wizards in usage, while Avdija led the team with a 22.1% defensive rebound rate in the three contests Porzingis missed at the end of January.

Chicago Bulls News

Confirmed Lineup: Patrick Beverley, Alex Caruso, Zach LaVine, DeMar DeRozan, Nikola Vucevic

  • Goran Dragic (knee) — Out

  • Javonte Green (knee) — Injured

  • Lonzo Ball (knee) — Injured

The Bulls succeeded with their smaller lineup during Friday's blowout win and should close with their starting unit provided Caruso's size doesn't prevent him from successfully matching up with Kuzma. Beverley played 13.3 first-half minutes as he started and split point guard minutes with Ayo Dosunmu in his team debut, finishing with eight points, five rebounds, and four assists on two-for-four shooting.

Los Angeles Lakers News

Confirmed Lineup: Dennis Schroder, Malik Beasley, LeBron James, Jarred Vanderbilt, Anthony Davis

  • LeBron James (foot) — In

  • Anthony Davis (foot) — In

  • D'Angelo Russell (ankle) — Out

Coach Ham deployed a nine-man rotation after Russell was injured in the first quarter Thursday, opting to give Schroder the second-half start as the reserve guards and wings collectively absorbed Russell's time in a blowout win. James' role could expand just as much as Schroder's: James has logged a -2.9% usage differential and a -8.5% assist rate differential during the 48.0 minutes he's shared the floor with Russell this season.

Dallas Mavericks News

Confirmed Lineup: Luka Doncic, Kyrie Irving, Justin Holiday, Reggie Bullock, Dwight Powell

  • Davis Bertans (calf) — Injured

  • Maxi Kleber (hamstring) — Injured

It appears that the plan for staggering Doncic and Irving's minutes is to allow Doncic to play the entire first and third quarters before Irving relieves him at the beginning of the second and fourth quarters. Jarred Vanderbilt projects to serve as the lead defender on Doncic, who has been limited to averaging 24.0 points on reduced 33.3% usage and 45.5% shooting in three career games with Vanderbilt in the opposing starting lineup.

Toronto Raptors News

Confirmed Lineup: Scottie Barnes, Gary Trent Jr., OG Anunoby, Pascal Siakam, Jakob Poeltl

  • Fred VanVleet (personal) — Out

  • Otto Porter (toe) — Injured

The Cavs have allowed the sixth-fewest points in the paint per game (47.2) and the second-fewest made threes per game (9.9) as they have done an excellent job of funneling shots into the midrange during their last ten contests. 55.0% of Siakam's field goal attempts and 39.0% of Barnes' have been midrange shots, which ranks them in the 98th and 85th percentiles league-wide, respectively.

Cleveland Cavaliers News

Confirmed Lineup: Darius Garland, Donovan Mitchell, Isaac Okoro, Evan Mobley, Jarrett Allen

The Cavs are 0-3 and have averaged 100.0 points per game despite Mitchell and Garland being available for all three matches against the Raptors this season. No Cav averaged over 17.0 points during those contests as Toronto effectively forced the ball out of Mitchell and Garland's hands. Mobley has averaged 19.3 points on increased 23.2% usage in February, and his offense should take on heightened importance in this matchup.

Sacramento Kings News

Confirmed Lineup: De'Aaron Fox, Kevin Huerter, Harrison Barnes, Keegan Murray, Domantas Sabonis

  • PJ Dozier (signed) — TBD

Oklahoma City Thunder News

Confirmed Lineup: Josh Giddey, Isaiah Joe, Lu Dort, Jalen Williams, Jaylin Williams

  • Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (ankle, abdominal) — Out

  • Ousmane Dieng (G League) — Out

  • Aaron Wiggins (G League) — Active

  • Lindy Waters (G League) — Active

  • Aleksej Pokusevski (leg) — Injured

  • Chet Holmgren (foot) — Injured

Joe, Dort, and Jalen Williams each attempted at least 14 shots as their scoring responsibilities spiked the most on the team in Gilgeous-Alexander's absence Friday. Additionally, Jaylin Williams, Jeremiah Robinson-Earl, and Dario Saric combined to record 10 assists from the center position as the Thunder increasingly ran sets through the high post.

Minnesota Timberwolves News

Confirmed Lineup: Mike Conley, Anthony Edwards, Jaden McDaniels, Kyle Anderson, Naz Reid

  • Rudy Gobert (illness) — Out

  • Taurean Prince (personal) — Out

  • Jaylen Nowell (knee) — Out

  • Wendell Moore Jr. (G League) — Out

  • Karl-Anthony Towns (calf) — Injured

Nickeil Alexander-Walker led Minnesota's reserves with 24.4 minutes with Prince sidelined Friday, finishing with 13 points on five-for-10 shooting (three-for-four from downtown). Anderson has led the team with a heightened 33.3% assist rate as his facilitating role hasn't been negatively impacted despite starting next to Conley for the last two games.

Golden State Warriors News

Confirmed Lineup: Jordan Poole, Donte DiVincenzo, Klay Thompson, Jonathan Kuminga, Kevon Looney

  • Draymond Green (knee) — Out

  • Andrew Wiggins (personal) — Out

  • Andre Iguodala (hip) — Out

  • Gary Payton II (adductor) — Injured

  • Stephen Curry (leg) — Injured

The Timberwolves have allowed the third-fewest made threes per game (10.6) but the second-most points in the paint per game (56.4) during their last 15 contests. The Warriors could be ill-equipped to take advantage: they've scored the fourth-fewest points in the paint per game (44.9) since Curry was injured, and Wiggins has led them with 9.0 points in the paint per game during those contests.

Houston Rockets News

Confirmed Lineup: TyTy Washington, Jae'Sean Tate, KJ Martin, Jabari Smith Jr., Alperen Sengun

  • Jalen Green (groin) — Out

  • Kevin Porter Jr. (foot) — Out

Washington finished his first career start with 15 points and four assists on five-for-12 shooting in 33.7 minutes Friday. The responsibilities of the remaining starters all increased in the absence of a ball-dominant guard. Their roles were further expanded by coach Silas' decision not to play Sengun for the final 16.2 minutes after Sengun struggled in space against Golden State's perimeter-oriented offense.

Portland Trail Blazers News

Confirmed Lineup: Damian Lillard, Matisse Thybulle, Cam Reddish, Jerami Grant, Drew Eubanks

  • Damian Lillard (rest) — Not on injury report

  • Jerami Grant (rest) — Not on injury report

  • Ryan Arcidiacono (back) — Out

  • Ibou Badji (knee) — Out

  • Anfernee Simons (ankle) — Injured

  • Jusuf Nurkic (calf) — Injured

  • Justise Winslow (ankle) — Injured

Lillard is set up well for a big performance: he's logged 38.9% usage with Simons off the court this season, hasn't played a standard game in 11 days, and faces an ideal matchup. The Rockets have allowed the most made threes per game (15.5) and the second-most points per 100 possessions (123.0) during their last ten matches. Additionally, Lillard's lead defenders will be wings or inexperienced guards.

Los Angeles Clippers News

Confirmed Lineup: Russell Westbrook, Paul George, Kawhi Leonard, Marcus Morris, Mason Plumlee

  • Ivica Zubac (calf) — Out

Westbrook played a fairly deferential role in his team debut Friday, scoring 17 points on seven-for-13 shooting while leading the team with 14 assists and seven turnovers in 39.5 minutes during their 176-175 double-overtime loss. Nicolas Batum and Norman Powell were the favored reserves in a nine-man rotation; Eric Gordon and Terance Mann played 18.0 minutes or less in regulation.

Denver Nuggets News

Confirmed Lineup: Jamal Murray, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Michael Porter Jr., Aaron Gordon, Nikola Jokic

  • Jamal Murray (foot) — Available

  • Aaron Gordon (rib) — Available

  • Michael Porter Jr. (injury management) — Available

  • Christian Braun (thumb) — Available

  • Zeke Nnaji (shoulder) — Out

Jokic averaged 30.8 points, 18.8 rebounds, and 9.3 assists on heightened 37.5% usage in his last four starts against teams starting Mason Plumlee at center. He finished with 40 points, 27 rebounds, and 10 assists in one game against Charlotte earlier in the season.