NBA Injury Report: Betting, DFS Impact of Damian Lillard, Myles Turner Injuries
Photo credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Damian Lillard
- The NBA Injury Report is a daily piece that runs through the slate's key injuries and their betting and DFS impact.
- There are two key teams with injuries to analyze on Thursday night: the Portland Trail Blazers and Indiana Pacers.
- This piece will detail the impact of the injuries to Damian Lillard, Myles Turner and more.
There are nine NBA games tonight with a lot of injuries to note and questionable players. We’ll analyze two key situations in this piece: the Charlotte Hornets at Portland Trail Blazers and the Indiana Pacers at New York Knicks.
Blazers PG Damian Lillard (elbow) is questionable, SF Maurice Harkless (knee) is out.
Update at 3:30 p.m. ET: Lillard is available to play Friday. For more information, check out our FantasyLabs news page.
Injury background: Lillard injured his left elbow while attempting to grab a rebound near the end of the third quarter in Wednesday’s win. He said his arm felt fine after the game, but he has officially been listed questionable on the injury report.
Harkless is once again dealing with a sore left knee and will miss his 16th game of the season.
Tonight’s impact: Lillard has yet to miss a game this season, and his durability has been stellar throughout his career. In 6.5 seasons, he has played in 511 of 534 regular season games.
Harkless has repeatedly dealt with knee injuries over the last two seasons, missing a combined 39 games. Jake Layman or Evan Turner are the two primary candidates to start, and the former received the nod on Wednesday.
Lillard has been mired in a shooting slump this month, shooting just 35.8% from the field. A sore elbow will not contribute favorably to his efficiency, and it’s possible the Blazers opt to let him fully heal.
If Lillard is unable to suit up, Seth Curry or Nik Stauskas could enter the starting lineup, while Wade Baldwin could potentially be recalled from the G League to provide backcourt depth.
C.J. McCollum and Turner would be the primary beneficiaries, as both receive noticeable bumps to their assist rate with Lillard off the court this season.
Turner already ranks third on the team with a 22.9% assist rate and would step into additional playmaking opportunities. McCollum benefits from a team-high +9.7% usage rate increase without Lillard this season, per the NBA On/Off tool.
For DFS, Turner would make for an easy play on DraftKings at just $4,000, where he also garners dual-positional eligibility. McCollum would make roster construction difficult on FanDuel, where there are two prioritized spends already in James Harden and Donovan Mitchell at the shooting guard position.
If Lillard is ruled out, selecting the right shooting guard duo could be the key to the slate.
Pacers C Myles Turner (shoulder) is out, PG Darren Collison (leg) is questionable.
Injury background: Turner will miss his fourth consecutive game due to a sore right shoulder. He’s reportedly feeling better and will not require any X-rays or an MRI, indicating the injury is not serious.
Collison is listed questionable for the third straight game with a leg injury but has played in the previous two without issue.
Tonight’s impact: Domantas Sabonis has filled in for Turner in the starting lineup and has averaged a team-high 1.17 DraftKings points per minute over the last three games. His price tag has significantly increased, but he has proven his worth by exceeding his salary-based expectations in each of the previous eight games.
To help alleviate any concerns with the price hike, Sabonis will draw an exceptional matchup against a Knicks team that he has dominated in two prior meetings this season. In just 42 total minutes facing the Knicks, he has made 18-of-22 field goal attempts to go along with 21 rebounds and seven assists.
Thaddeus Young has seen a slight uptick in playing time and rebound percentage, and he’ll make for a strong GPP option as a lower-owned pivot to Sabonis. In four games without Turner this season, Young has averaged 29.06 DraftKings points.
Victor Oladipo totaled 96.0 DraftKings points against the Knicks this season but has failed to reach 29.0 in each of the last three games with Turner sidelined. His tournament ownership will remain low due to his recent play and a bevy of elite options at the shooting guard position.
The game’s total of 218.5 points hasn’t budged since Turner’s status has been downgraded to out. However, the Pacers have seen an increased Offensive Rating, decreased Defensive Rating and increased pace with Turner off the court this season.