NBA News & Fantasy Basketball Notes 12/29

Dec 29th 2023

Cooper Boni

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

  • Bradley Beal (ankle) — Available

  • Jayson Tatum (injury management) — Out

  • Giannis Antetokounmpo (injury management) — Available

  • Kawhi Leonard (hip) — Out

  • Ja Morant (illness) — Not on injury report

  • Victor Wembanyama (rest) — Out

  • Donovan Mitchell (illness) — Available

  • Jaylen Brown (back) — Available

  • Kristaps Porzingis (injury management) — Out

  • Jrue Holiday (elbow) — Available

  • Anfernee Simons (illness) — Out

  • Deandre Ayton (knee) — Out

  • Michael Porter Jr. (quad) — Available

  • Keldon Johnson (back) — Available

  • Nic Claxton (illness) — Available

  • Shaedon Sharpe (adductor) — Out

  • Dorian Finney-Smith (knee) — Available

  • Mark Williams (back) — Out

Follow us on Twitter at @Underdog__NBA for notifications.

New York Knicks News

Confirmed Lineup: Jalen Brunson, Donte DiVincenzo, RJ Barrett, Julius Randle, Isaiah Hartenstein

  • Jericho Sims (ankle) — Injured

  • Mitchell Robinson (ankle) — Injured

Orlando Magic News

Confirmed Lineup: Anthony Black, Jalen Suggs, Franz Wagner, Paolo Banchero, Goga Bitadze

  • Markelle Fultz (knee) — Out

  • Wendell Carter Jr. (knee) — Out

  • Joe Ingles (ankle) — Out

  • Gary Harris (calf) — Out

  • Jonathan Isaac (hamstring) — Out

Brooklyn Nets News

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

  • Dorian Finney-Smith (knee) — Available

  • Nic Claxton (illness) — Available

  • Lonnie Walker (hamstring) — Injured

  • Ben Simmons (back) — Injured

Washington Wizards News

Confirmed Lineup: Tyus Jones, Jordan Poole, Deni Avdija, Kyle Kuzma, Daniel Gafford

  • Danilo Gallinari (back) — Out

Sacramento Kings News

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

Atlanta Hawks News

Confirmed Lineup: Trae Young, Dejounte Murray, Saddiq Bey, Jalen Johnson, Clint Capela

  • Seth Lundy (ankle) — Out

  • De'Andre Hunter (knee) — Injured

  • Mouhamed Gueye (back) — Injured

Toronto Raptors News

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

  • Garrett Temple (ankle) — Out

  • Christian Koloko (respiratory) — Injured

Boston Celtics News

Confirmed Lineup: Jrue Holiday, Derrick White, Jaylen Brown, Sam Hauser, Luke Kornet

  • Jayson Tatum (injury management) — Out

  • Jaylen Brown (back) — Available

  • Kristaps Porzingis (injury management) — Out

  • Jrue Holiday (elbow) — Available

  • Al Horford (rest) — Out

Milwaukee Bucks News

Confirmed Lineup: Damian Lillard, Malik Beasley, Khris Middleton, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Brook Lopez

  • Giannis Antetokounmpo (injury management) — Available

  • Jae Crowder (adductor) — Injured

Cleveland Cavaliers News

Confirmed Lineup: Donovan Mitchell, Max Strus, Isaac Okoro, Dean Wade, Jarrett Allen

  • Donovan Mitchell (illness) — Available

  • Sam Merrill (wrist) — Available

  • Evan Mobley (knee) — Injured

  • Darius Garland (jaw) — Injured

  • Ty Jerome (ankle) — Injured

  • Ricky Rubio — NWT

The Cavaliers have been without Mitchell for the last four contests, but he's seemingly nearing a return. Since he's been sidelined, Cleveland has played well, winning three out of four games. However, they're set to face the Bucks, whose 121.2 Offensive Rating is the second-best league-wide. While the Cavaliers' have maintained a top-10 Defensive Rating in Mitchell's absence, his availability would help against Giannis Antetokounmpo and Damian Lillard. Mitchell is posting career-highs in steals (1.8) and blocks per game (0.5).

Philadelphia 76ers News

Confirmed Lineup: Tyrese Maxey, De'Anthony Melton, Kelly Oubre, Tobias Harris, Paul Reed

  • KJ Martin (illness) — Out

  • Joel Embiid (ankle) — Out

  • Nicolas Batum (hamstring) — Out

Houston Rockets News

Confirmed Lineup: Fred VanVleet, Jalen Green, Jae'Sean Tate, Jeff Green, Alperen Sengun

  • Tari Eason (leg) — Available

  • Jabari Smith Jr. (ankle) — Out

  • Dillon Brooks (oblique) — Injured

  • Victor Oladipo (knee) — Injured

Oklahoma City Thunder News

Confirmed Lineup: Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Josh Giddey, Lu Dort, Jalen Williams, Chet Holmgren

  • Jaylin Williams (hip) — Available

Denver Nuggets News

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

  • Michael Porter Jr. (quad) — Available

  • Reggie Jackson (skin lesion) — Available

  • Aaron Gordon (lacerations) — Injured

  • Vlatko Cancar (knee) — Injured

Charlotte Hornets News

Confirmed Lineup: Terry Rozier, Bryce McGowens, Brandon Miller, Miles Bridges, Nick Richards

  • Mark Williams (back) — Out

  • Gordon Hayward (calf) — Injured

  • LaMelo Ball (ankle) — Injured

  • Frank Ntilikina (leg) — Injured

Phoenix Suns News

Confirmed Lineup: Devin Booker, Bradley Beal, Grayson Allen, Kevin Durant, Jusuf Nurkic

  • Bradley Beal (ankle) — Available

  • Josh Okogie (ankle) — Out

  • Nassir Little (knee) — Out

  • Damion Lee (knee) — Injured

Beal has missed the previous five outings but could make his return. His presence would be welcomed as the Suns have lost seven of their last 10 games. Phoenix will face the Hornets, who have allowed the eighth-most made three-pointers to shooting guards this season. While Beal has only played six games, he's converting a career-high 42.9% from beyond the arc.

San Antonio Spurs News

Confirmed Lineup: Malaki Branham, Devin Vassell, Julian Champagnie, Jeremy Sochan, Zach Collins

  • Keldon Johnson (back) — Available

  • Devonte' Graham (illness) — Out

  • Victor Wembanyama (rest) — Out

  • Charles Bassey (knee) — Out for season

Before the Spurs' back-to-back set started, coach Popovich mentioned that Wembanyama wouldn't play in both games. He played in the first leg, so the assumption is he will be ruled out for the second. San Antonio hasn't won any of their three games played sans Wembanyama. Regardless of Wembanyama's potential absence, the Spurs should be able to compete against a Blazers team that has the fifth-worst Net Rating (-6.3) league-wide.

Portland Trail Blazers News

Confirmed Lineup: Scoot Henderson, Malcolm Brogdon, Toumani Camara, Jerami Grant, Moses Brown

  • Toumani Camara (thumb) — Available

  • Jabari Walker (thumb) — Available

  • Anfernee Simons (illness) — Out

  • Deandre Ayton (knee) — Out

  • Shaedon Sharpe (adductor) — Out

  • Duop Reath (back) — Out

  • Robert Williams (knee) — Out for season

Memphis Grizzlies News

Confirmed Lineup: Ja Morant, Marcus Smart, Desmond Bane, Jaren Jackson Jr., Bismack Biyombo

  • Ja Morant (illness) — Not on injury report

  • Santi Aldama (illness) — Available

  • Derrick Rose (hamstring) — Out

  • Luke Kennard (knee) — Out

  • John Konchar (illness) — Out

  • Brandon Clarke (Achilles) — Injured

  • Steven Adams (knee) — Out for season

Los Angeles Clippers News

Confirmed Lineup: James Harden, Terance Mann, Paul George, Amir Coffey, Ivica Zubac

  • Kawhi Leonard (hip) — Out

  • Mason Plumlee (knee) — Injured

The Clippers and Grizzlies could both be missing one of their top players for their meeting as Leonard and Ja Morant are uncertain to play. Leonard missed the previous three outings, and the Clippers lost two of those three games. If he is sidelined again, Harden will likely continue to garner more usage, as he's seen a +6.25% usage rate increase over that span of games. Since Leonard's been out, the Clippers' -15.8 Net Rating is the league's worst.