NBA Injury Report: Betting, DFS Impact of Kyrie Irving, Derrick Rose Injuries
Harrison Barden-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Derrick Rose and Kyrie Irving
- The Boston Celtics may be without Kyrie Irving on Wednesday night against the Minnesota Timberwolves, who will also be missing key pieces.
- Boston's Terry Rozier and Minnesota's Tyus Jones may see extended minutes as a result.
There are nine NBA games tonight with a lot of injuries to note and questionable players. We’ll analyze one key situation in this piece — Minnesota Timberwolves at Boston Celtics.
Celtics PG Kyrie Irving (eye) is questionable.
Injury background: Irving was elbowed in the face during Monday’s loss and briefly went to the locker room after trying to remain in the game. Afterward, coach Brad Stevens revealed that Irving will need antibiotics due to a scratched cornea in his right eye.
Tonight’s impact: Irving has missed just two games this season — one due to a sore right shoulder, and one for personal reasons. In both absences, Terry Rozier entered the starting lineup in his place. In those two games, Rozier provided 36.5 and 31.75 DraftKings points in 33.8 minutes per start.
If Irving can’t suit up, Rozier will likely be the chalkiest play of the slate with an enticing price tag of $4,300 on FanDuel, where he carries a 99% Bargain Rating.
Marcus Smart, Jayson Tatum, Gordon Hayward, Marcus Morris, and Jaylen Brown would also benefit and absorb additional usage, as Irving’s 28.2% usage rate ranks in the top-20 of all starters this season. Per the NBA On/Off tool, Brown has led all rotation players with a +8.9% usage rate increase in the two games sans Irving, while Morris has led the Celtics with 1.13 DK points per minute.
Hayward has seen his rates increase and supplied a season-high 58.25 DK points off the bench in the prior game against the Wolves this season. However, since moving to a reserve role, he’s been largely mediocre.
Despite multiple players stepping into favorable roles if Irving is out, the Celtics offense would suffer. With Irving off the court this season, the team has seen its Offensive Rating drop from 112.7 to 98.1, per NBA.com.
It’s possible Irving is less than 100% even if he plays, shifting him to just tournament consideration for Wednesday’s nine-game slate. The upside certainly exists, especially if opposing defensive stalwart Robert Covington (ankle, questionable) is ruled out. Over the last 10 games, Irving has produced a FantasyLabs +5.98 DK Plus/Minus.
Wolves PG Derrick Rose (ankle) is doubtful, PG Jeff Teague (ankle) is doubtful, SF Robert Covington (ankle) is doubtful.
Injury background: The Wolves are hindered by ankle injuries to three key players in advance of Wednesday’s game against the Celtics. Coach Tom Thibodeau said that Rose, Teague, and Covington couldn’t do much at Wednesday’s shootaround and are all most likely out.
Tonight’s impact: Rose is set to miss his third consecutive game, while Teague has been sidelined since mid-December. Covington, who has missed just one game since being traded to the Wolves, suffered his injury after a Pelicans player fell into his leg during Monday’s loss.
Tyus Jones has entered the starting lineup in the previous two games and has averaged 37.5 DK points in 37.0 minutes per start. His salary has increased on both sites, but he’ll still command heavy ownership with coach Thibodeau’s propensity to run starters for heavy minutes.
With Covington unlikely to suit up, Josh Okogie and Dario Saric will see extended playing time. Okogie is a serviceable punt option on FD at just $3,900, and while he clears up salary to afford multiple studs, he has averaged an underwhelming 0.67 FD points per minute with Teague, Rose, and Covington off the court since the Jimmy Butler trade.
Karl-Anthony Towns has logged just 29 total minutes with all injured players off the court this season, but he has recorded an astonishing 2.01 DK points per minute with a team-high 38.4% usage rate. He’ll make for a strong pivot option from other high-priced studs in Anthony Davis and Joel Embiid.
The game total has already dropped three points to 218, but value could still be found on the under with several offensive weapons dealing with injuries.