NBA Injury Report: Betting, DFS Impact of Clippers, Suns Injuries

NBA Injury Report: Betting, DFS Impact of Clippers, Suns Injuries article feature image
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Photo credit: Jennifer Stewart-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Deandre Ayton

  • The NBA Injury Report details the slate's key injuries and their betting and DFS impact.
  • There are two key teams with injuries to analyze on Tuesday night: the Los Angeles Clippers and Phoenix Suns.
  • This piece will detail the impact of the injuries to Lou Williams, Danilo Gallinari, Deandre Ayton and more.

There are four games tonight with a few injuries and questionable players. We’ll analyze two key situations in this article: the Los Angeles Clippers at Dallas Mavericks and the Minnesota Timberwolves at Phoenix Suns.

Note: The information below is as of 4:30 p.m. ET. Check out our live news feed and follow us on Twitter for up-to-the-minute news and analysis.


Los Angeles Clippers

Update at 4:30 p.m. ET: Lou Williams is likely to play.

Injuries: Danilo Gallinari (back) is out. Lou Williams (hamstring) is listed questionable.

Injury background: Gallinari was limited to eight minutes in Friday’s loss due to lower back spasms, and he didn’t play Sunday.

Williams missed the last two games due to a sore right hamstring. Following Friday’s loss, coach Doc Rivers expected Williams to miss another two games. Williams was listed questionable prior to Sunday’s win before being ruled out.

Tonight’s impact: No Gallinari for the second straight game could force Rivers to recycle Sunday’s starting lineup but alter his substitution patterns and extend his rotation on the front end of a back-to-back.

Patrick Beverley started for the injured Gallinari, which shifted Tobias Harris to power forward. Additionally, Montrezl Harrell replaced Marcin Gortat as the starting center and Johnathan Motley was the primary backup center.

Motley was the only reserve who played more than 10 minutes Sunday. Rivers used an eight-man rotation in the second half, and Mike Scott, who started the second half of Friday’s game in place of Gallinari, was a DNP-CD.

Beverley supplied 53.5 DraftKings points in 42 minutes, and Harris registered 60.75 DraftKings points in 43 minutes for the shorthanded Clippers on Sunday. Avery Bradley and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander exceeded 37 minutes, but those minutes totals don’t seem feasible on the first leg of a back-to-back if Williams is once again ruled out.

It’s safe to assume Tyrone Wallace will get more minutes to help balance out the guard rotation, and if Williams is available Beverley’s minutes should scale down accordingly.

When Williams and Gallinari have been off the court, Harris has recorded team-highs among rotation players with 1.31 DraftKings points per minute, a 26.8% usage rate and a +6.5% assist rate differential, per the NBA On/Off tool.

He’ll be a sturdy cash-game threat, while the Clippers guards display plenty of value, as Williams is the only one who costs more than $4,800 on DraftKings and FanDuel.

In two games against the Mavs in December, Harrell provided 42.5 and 35.0 DraftKings points as a reserve, and he’ll be a solid option at center on the four-game slate.

In seven games against teams allowing the highest field goal percentage at the rim, Harrell has averaged 42.86 DraftKings points, per the Trends tool. The Mavericks are one of those five teams.

The Clippers are presently two-point road underdogs, per the NBA Vegas dashboard, likely driven by the Mavs’ 16-6 home record. Despite the Clippers’ 1-5 record sans Williams, they have several positive indicators:

  • Mavs’ 0-8 record without J.J. Barea
  • Mavs’ 0-7 record on zero days rest
  • Mavs’ 97.8 Offensive Rating on zero days rest — second-lowest in NBA
  • Likely return of Dennis Smith Jr., who possesses a team-low 101.3 Offensive Rating
  • The Mavs’ most-used five-man lineup — the normal starters with Smith Jr. — has cobbled together a -6.3 Net Rating

Phoenix Suns

Update at 4:30 p.m. ET: Ayton and Holmes are out.

Injuries: Deandre Ayton (ankle) is doubtful. Richaun Holmes (foot) is questionable.

Injury background: Ayton and Holmes both missed the final quarter of Saturday’s loss for unrelated injuries, and neither played Sunday in the first game of a home-and-home set vs. the Wolves.

Tonight’s impact: Without Ayton and Holmes on Sunday, Dragan Bender, who was a DNP-CD in 17 of the previous 22 games, started, and Quincy Acy, who is on a second 10-day contract and is listed at 6-foot-7, served as the backup center in the two-point loss.

If Holmes is cleared to play without restrictions, he’ll project as the starting center if Ayton is unable to play. He’ll also be a cheap center option at $4,100 on DraftKings.

Bender likely displayed enough Sunday to remain in the rotation, but he’ll compete with Acy for minutes off the bench. Expect both to consume the center minutes if Holmes and Ayton are ruled out again.

The Suns have averaged around three extra possessions per 48 minutes with Ayton on the bench, and their rebound rate has increased as well, per NBA.com. When Ayton and players no longer on the Suns have been off the court, the Suns have generated a respectable -1.0 Net Rating, per Cleaning the Glass.

On an individual basis, Booker’s usage and assist rates have declined roughly 2% when Ayton and the players no longer on the roster have been off the court.

De’Anthony Melton has supplied 1.06 DraftKings points per minute, but his standing in the rotation has slipped with the addition of Kelly Oubre and coach Igor Kokoskov’s reliance on Jamal Crawford.

Despite starting, Melton has played less than 17 minutes in three straight games, capping his appeal to a cheap punt now that his $3,700 salary on DraftKings has matched his recent production.

In six games under interim coach Ryan Saunders — all without Robert Covington and the last two sans Tyus Jones — the Wolves have ranked 26th with a 116.9 Defensive Rating. They’ve gone 6-16 on the road, and the Wolves went from 12-point favorites on Sunday to five-point favorites tonight.

Karl-Anthony Towns scored 28 points in the first half Sunday, and Bender committed two fouls in the first six minutes. Despite the foul trouble, Bender provided 29 FanDuel points in 29 minutes.

Towns was held to two points on 1-of-8 shooting in the second half, and his usage rate dropped from 37.9% in the first half to 21.3% the final two quarters.

The Suns committed a second defender to Towns more in the second half. He concluded with 61 DraftKings points in 39 minutes. In the first game against the Suns, he etched 59 DraftKings points in 38 minutes.

He’s the top stud on the slate, and against teams that have been torched by 3-point shooting centers this season, Towns has averaged 63.98 FanDuel points in 12 games. The Suns fit the criteria, and Towns should be highly owned.