- The NBA Injury Report is a daily piece that runs through the slate's key injuries and their betting and DFS impact.
- Below I'll detail the impact of the injuries to Stephen Curry, Draymond Green and Lauri Markkanen.
There are seven games tonight with a lot of injuries and questionable players. We’ll analyze two key situations in this piece: the Golden State Warriors at the Detroit Pistons and the Chicago Bulls at the Houston Rockets.
Warriors PG Steph Curry (groin) will play, PF Draymond Green (toe) is out.
Injury background: Curry has missed the past 11 games with a strained left groin but will return tonight vs. the Pistons. Green will remain out with a sprained right toe.
Tonight’s impact: Curry’s return will cut into the production of almost all the Warriors. In nine games this year, Kevin Durant has led the teams with 57.83 DraftKings points per game and a massive 38.5% usage rate. That’s a usage rate increase of 5.0% compared to games he’s played with Curry.
Klay Thompson has increased his usage by 2.3% in the games without Curry, and he’s averaged 4.2 more DraftKings points per game. Quinn Cook, who has averaged 26.19 DraftKings points per game starting for Curry, will be relegated back to bench point guard duties.
Outside of fantasy, the Warriors (and those who bet on them) have really struggled without Steph this year:
- With Steph: 10-2 straight up and 7-5 against the spread
- Without Steph: 5-6 SU and 3-8 ATS
Our power rankings have Steph as worth about 6.5 points to the spread — the highest mark in the league, despite playing with other all-stars.
According to Cleaning the Glass, the Warriors have been 12.7 points per 100 possessions worse without Steph this season, which is in the 89th percentile of all players. The offense specifically has been 8.5 points/100 worse without him, and that’s exacerbated by the slow pace the Warriors play without him.
Bulls PF Lauri Markkanen (elbow) is probable to make his season debut.
Injury background: Markkanen has been upgraded to probable vs. the Rockets on Saturday after missing the entire season due to a sprained right elbow.
Tonight’s impact: The Bulls have already reported that Markkanen will have a minutes limit if he plays tonight. His potential return should cut into the minutes of Chandler Hutchison and Jabari Parker.
The Bulls are presently double-digit underdogs, and both teams are playing on the second night of a back-to-back. When the Bulls have been an underdog by at least 10 points, Parker has led the team with a FantasyLabs’ +7.56 DraftKings Plus/Minus and exceeded salary-based expectations in six of eight chances.
Last year, the Bulls were actually 4.1 points per 100 possessions worse with Lauri on the court vs. off, although that’s typical of a starter on a poor team.
He likely isn’t worth any points to the spread, especially in limited minutes. Still, it will be fun to see him paired up with 2018 draft pick, Wendell Carter Jr., as the front court of Chicago’s future.