There are plenty of injuries around The Association. We look at the most important injuries for Fantasy owners, analyzing not only the injured player and when he’ll be back, but who benefits from his absence.
Boston Celtics PG Avery Bradley (ankle) aggravated his ankle injury Wednesday, but head coach Brad Stevens told ESPNBoston.com that there is “nothing structural.” He was unable to practice Thursday, so monitor his status Friday before plugging him back into the active Fantasy lineup for the upcoming week. … PG Rajon Rondo (rest) did not practice Thursday due to what Stevens called “general soreness.” The good news is that it was reportedly not his surgically repaired knee that was hindering him. However, remember that the team has a back-to-back situation coming up Sunday and Monday, so it wouldn’t be surprising at all to see him held out of one of those games, most likely Monday in Milwaukee.
Brooklyn Nets SF Andrei Kirilenko (calf) was able to return to the lineup Thursday against San Antonio, and he posted four points with eight rebounds, six assists and a steal in 26 minutes. If you normally depend upon AK-47 for Fantasy purposes in deeper leagues, it appears safe to get him back into the active lineup. … PG Deron Williams (knee) left Thursday’s game briefly, but he was able to return. He ended up with 16 points, eight assists and four rebounds with a steal, and his injury might not even be worth mentioning. However, you never know how these things will end up after sitting overnight, so let’s call him day-to-day to be on the safe side. If he plays Friday in Detroit, start him as you normally would in the upcoming scoring period. … Lastly, PF Kevin Garnett (rest) is likely to rest Friday, according to ESPN.com, so consider that when finalizing your daily Fantasy lineups.
Chicago Bulls PF Carlos Boozer (calf) suffered a strained left calf in the locker room before Thursday’s game, and he was a late scratch. PF Taj Gibson made the start in Boozer’s absence, and will continue to do so as long as Booze is sidelined. Gibson was giant, posting 26 points, 13 rebounds and a pair of blocked shots. The Bulls do not play again until Sunday at L.A. Lakers, so Boozer has two full days to rest. As long as he is able to return Sunday and prove his health, he will be a safe play for the upcoming shortened week.
Yahoo! Sports reports Denver Nuggets C JaVale McGee (leg) might miss the rest of the season due to the stress fracture in his tibia/lower leg. If you have been holding out hope for a return and need the roster spot, it might be safe to drop him in most Fantasy leagues. If you can afford the roster spot, it is possible he could return later this season, but it is starting to not look good.
Golden State Warriors C Andrew Bogut (shoulder) and PF/C David Lee (shoulder) were unable to play against the Bulls. PF Draymond Green and C Jermaine O’Neal made the starts in their stead, with Green picking up nine points, seven rebounds and a pair of blocked shots, while J.O. was not as effective. O’Neal ended up hitting just one of his four field goal attempts for four points, five rebounds and a respectable three blocked shots. If either Bogut or Lee are sidelined again Saturday in Phoenix, first off, remember Green in daily Fantasy formats, and second, keep the injured player(s) reserved into the upcoming shortened week prior to the All-Star break.
Indiana Pacers head coach Frank Vogel told the team’s official website that SG Lance Stephenson (back) is day-to-day heading into Friday’s game against Portland. Stephenson was injured Tuesday on a hard fall. Swingman Danny Granger would stand to gain the most if Stephenson is sidelined, but the good news is that his injury doesn’t sound terribly serious after it looked awfully scary initially.
Los Angeles Clippers PG Chris Paul (shoulder) appears to be closing in on a return from a separated right shoulder. He looked good in a singing appearance (no, it wasn’t his ‘twin’ brother Cliff) on the final Tonight Show with Jay Leno Thursday. CP3 is pushing to return Sunday, and if he plays a full game without any restrictions, Fantasy owners can safely plug him back into the active lineup before the break. … SG J.J. Redick (hip, back) was unable to play Wednesday, and he is considered day-to-day. SG Jamal Crawford stepped up in Redick’s absence, banging out five 3-pointers in 47 minutes, finishing with 31 points, six assists and three steals. If Redick is forced to miss more time, Crawford is a must-start daily Fantasy option.
The Los Angeles Lakers could probably have their own personal Injury Report column on this site, that’s how amazingly difficult their season has been. The latest injury is to SG Nick Young (knee), who suffered a non-displaced fracture and bone bruise in his left knee. He is scheduled to miss at least two weeks, but the good news is that at least the injury comes sandwiched around the All-Star break, so it’s possible he might just miss a handful of games. … SG Jordan Farmar (hamstring, cramps) appears to be on track to play Friday in Philadelphia, according to the team’s website. With the way players have been falling like flies, Farmar might actually have a productive game for daily Fantasy owners. His appeal in weekly leagues remains limited to the deepest formats, however. … PF/C Jordan Hill (neck, head) suffered a cervical stinger in Wednesday’s game in Cleveland, and he is a question mark for Friday. If he plays, he is worth plugging back into the active lineup in all deeper weekly leagues. If Hill remains sidelined, PF/C Chris Kaman and C Robert Sacre will continue to log heavy minutes in the frontcourt. Each are solid values in daily Fantasy formats. … Lastly, swingman Jodie Meeks (ankle) has been quite the find, but he is expected to miss at least one more game (Friday) due to an ankle injury. Swingman Wesley Johnson is expected to draw another start in his stead.
Memphis Grizzlies PG Mike Conley (ankle) remains sidelined, so PG Nick Calathes is likely to do more heavy lifting in his absence. Over the past three games, Calathes has averaged 15.3 PPG, 4.3 RPG, 3.7 APG and 2.7 SPG. However, Conley appears to be nearing a return, so do not give up a lot trying to get Calathes onto your roster. However, if you can afford the roster spot, he appears to have some nice short-term appeal. … Swingman Tony Allen (wrist) is dealing with a sprained left wrist, and he is a risky play heading into the upcoming week. He was able to return to practice, but he is question mark for all four games leading up to the break.
The Milwaukee Bucks are another team that has been sacked by the injury bug of late. It isn’t all bad, as PF John Henson (wrist) was able to return from a wrist ailment Wednesday. He managed just two points and five rebounds in 17 minutes, but he is likely to see a bigger role going forward. Before his injury, he was emerging as a Fantasy stud. … PF Ersan Ilyasova (back) left Wednesday’s game due to back pain, and is a huge question mark for all games leading up to the break. Any loss of time for Ilyasova is a gain for Henson. … F Caron Butler (ankle) suffered a high ankle sprain, and he is down for the count. With Butler out indefinitely, SF Khris Middleton has stepped up his play and re-emerged as a useful number four or five Fantasy forward in most leagues.
Minnesota Timberwolves PF/C Kevin Love (back) did not play Wednesday, and his status is uncertain for a back-to-back situation Friday in New Orleans and Saturday at home against Portland. It is simply conjecture, but it is hard to believe Love will be able to play in the back-to-back situation. If he is able to play Saturday and show well, get him back into the active Fantasy lineup.
New Orleans Pelicans swingman Tyreke Evans (ribs) was sidelined Wednesday due to an injury to his right rib cage, and he is uncertain for Friday’s game against Minnesota. If he is able to return Friday or Sunday in Brooklyn, get him back into the active Fantasy lineup for the upcoming week. If he sits all weekend, he is an obvious reserve candidate.
The Sacramento Bee reports G Marcus Thornton (hip) is questionable for Friday’s game in Boston due to a hip injury. If he is able to play Friday or Sunday in Washington, keep him active in Fantasy leagues as you normally would. If he cannot return for at least one game to prove his health, play it safe and keep him reserved in all leagues.
San Antonio Spurs PG Tony Parker (back) missed Thursday’s game at Brooklyn, and PF Tim Duncan (rest) was given the night off to rest after a double-overtime thriller in Washington. Duncan isn’t a concern for Saturday’s contest in Charlotte, but Parker is a worry. If he cannot play Saturday, keep him reserved heading into the new week. However, don’t put it past head coach Gregg Popovich to rest Parker through the All-Star break, using a combination of Gs Nando De Colo (nasal), Cory Joseph and Patty Mills to give the veteran a lengthy break. … Speaking of De Colo, he suffered a nasal fracture Thursday, but he was able to tough it up and return with a plastic protective mask. When 100 percent healthy, his Fantasy appeal is limited to the deepest of leagues. … PF/C Boris Diaw (illness) missed Thursday’s game at Brooklyn due to a bout with food poisoning, and he is a question mark heading into the weekend.
Lastly, Utah Jazz F Jeremy Evans (tailbone) and PF/C Derrick Favors (hip) are each considered game-time decisions for Friday’s contest against Dallas. When healthy, Evans is only worth a look in the deepest of Fantasy formats, so his loss isn’t a big one. However, Favors has really been a Fantasy force this season. If he cannot return Friday or Saturday against Miami, keep him reserved in all leagues heading into the new scoring period.