We’ve got an eight-game slate in the NBA Wednesday, including ESPN’s doubleheader featuring Knicks-76ers and Trail Blazers-Suns. Here’s a look at the injury report for the day’s action, along with the relevant fantasy and betting implications.
NBA Injury Report: March 2
Darius Garland (back) available
Update - Garland is playing Wednesday, which is big news for the Cavaliers. Cleveland’s All-Star guard has missed three games after the All-Star break, which led to concerns about his back injury. However, it appears he was just getting some additional rest and treatment during that time. With Garland in, Brandon Goodwin will see less run in key situations for Cleveland.
The back injury has been bothering Garland for a while, and even an extended All-Star break rest couldn’t prevent him from missing some games. He’s questionable and becomes a no-brainer addition to lineups if he plays. If he sits, Brandon Goodwin continues to be the value option.
Chris Duarte (toe) OUT
Lance Stephenson (ankle) available
Malcolm Brogdon (Achilles) available
Update - Stephenson is in, while Duarte is out. This gives fantasy/DFS players free reign to slide Hield and Haliburton into lineups, as both will likely get extended minutes. Brissett is also a value option on the wing with Duarte out.
Brogdon is available after getting a rest Monday, while Duarte and Stephenson are questionable. Oshae Brissett would be the play if Duarte gets ruled out, but Tyrese Haliburton and Buddy Hield continue to serve as the best secondary fantasy/DFS options on Indiana.
Cole Anthony (hip) available
Moritz Wagner (rib) OUT
Update - Anthony, as expected, is ready to go Wednesday. With Markelle Fultz still on a minutes limit, the point guard is a solid fantasy/DFS option for the Magic.
Anthony is probable, so he’ll retain his standard value. Wagner is out, which means more minutes for Mo Bamba and Wendell Carter Jr.
No notable day-to-day injuries for either team at this time.
Kevin Porter Jr. (ankle) available
Eric Gordon (rest) OUT
Update - Porter Jr. is good to go Wednesday and becomes a nice DFS play in what could be a high-scoring game against the Jazz.
Update - Gordon is being rested Wednesday for the second night of a back-to-back, so he’s not going to be available to play. However, Porter Jr. is probable and could be a nice addition to lineups with Gordon out.
Porter Jr. missed Tuesday’s game, so we’ll see if he plays Wednesday. Eric Gordon, Jalen Green and Jae’Sean Tate are the beneficiaries if Porter Jr. sits again.
Kyle Lowry (personal) OUT
Lowry remains out for a personal issue, so Gabe Vincent and Tyler Herro should see extended minutes. Both had massive games Monday against the Bulls.
Richaun Holmes (back) OUT
Update - Holmes is out with his back injury, so Sabonis and Len are going to get additional minutes in the frontcourt against the Pelicans.
With Holmes questionable, look for Domantas Sabonis and Alex Len to potentially absorb those additional frontcourt minutes for Sacramento.
Aaron Wiggins (ankle) OUT
Josh Giddey (hip) OUT
Wiggins and Giddey are both out. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is the only bonafide play, while Tre Mann is a high-upside value play.
Austin Rivers (illness) available
Update - Rivers is good to play and will be a key perimeter rotation piece for Denver. He’s got some upside if he can get hot from deep in what is likely to be a blowout game.
If Rivers doesn’t suit up due to a non-COVID illness, look for Bones Hyland and Monte Morris to get extended looks on the perimeter against OKC.
Eric Bledsoe (Achilles) OUT
Justise Winslow (Achilles) OUT
Bledsoe and Winslow are out, meaning Anfernee Simons and Keon Johnson are the fantasy/DFS plays here. Simons is a solid play, while Johnson has been getting extended minutes if Winslow is out.
Cameron Payne (wrist) available
Devin Booker (protocols) OUT
Update - Payne is good to go, and could get the start with Booker out. It’ll be interesting to see how Phoenix deploys its rotation, but Payne could be due for some extended minutes in his return to the court.
Update — The Suns placed Booker into COVID-19 protocols on Wednesday and he’s unlikely to play tonight vs. the Blazers. Look for Cam Payne, Aaron Holiday and Landry Shamet to pick up more minutes at guard. If Payne can’t play, Holiday is almost a mortal lock on tonight’s NBA DFS slate. Deandre Ayton and Mikal Bridges are also decent options to step up with the scoring void created by Booker’s absence.
Payne is probable, which is good news for Phoenix. There’s a possibility he starts, but he’s likely to take over Aaron Holiday’s backup point guard role. We’ll see exactly how the rotation looks Wednesday night but Payne could be a decent addition in fantasy/DFS formats.