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Ten Before Tip: NBA news from Tuesday

POSTED: Feb 19, 2014 12:33 AM ET news services


• Raptors forward Amir Johnson (ankle) will play after missing the previous two games, Casey said. Johnson has started 47 of 50 games, though Casey said his role against the Wizards would be determined during warm-ups.

• Cavaliers guard Carrick Felix (stress fracture) and center Anderson Varejao (back) are both out.

• Sixers reserve forward Brandon Davies remains out with a fractured right finger, and forward Hollis Thompson is out with a right ankle sprain.

• The short-handed Hawks are trying to snap a five-game losing streak without Al Horford (torn pectoral muscle), Pero Antic (stress fracture, right ankle) and John Jenkins (lower back surgery). DeMarre Carroll missed the last game before the break with a hamstring strain and will be held out of the starting lineup tonight. Cartier Martin will start in his place.

• Indiana will start its usual lineup of George Hill, Lance Stephenson, George, David West and Roy Hibbert. Bynum and Solomon Hill are inactive.

• Pistons forward Charlie Villanueva will miss the game vs. the Bobcats for personal reasons. Guard Chauncey Billups is also inactive.

• The Grizzlies welcome back point guard Mike Conley, who missed seven games with a sprained right ankle. Prior to the injury, Conley was in the midst of his best season, averaging a team-high 18 points and 6.3 assists, while shooting a career-best .458. His absence, however, allowed rookie Nick Calathes to gain some much-needed confidence. Calathes started seven games, averaging 14.7 points, 4.7 rebounds, 4.9 assists and 2.57 steals. He scored a career-high 22 points against Milwaukee in his first career start. Prior to that, in 34 games off the bench, Calathes averaged three points, 1.1 rebounds and 2.2 assists. "I am proud of Nick Calathes and the confidence he got as a starter," Grizzlies' coach Dave Joerger said. "He played a lot of minutes, didn't turn the basketball over. He was making shots and hopefully that serves him well supporting Mike and coming off the bench."

• In what can only be considered a perfect example of how things have gone for the Bucks in this disappointing season, they may be without guard Brandon Knight, their leading scorer. Knight suffered a cut to the bottom of his right heel stepping out of his shower and hitting a baseboard. "I don't know," said Knight, who was sitting in the locker room with a sock on his left foot but a bare right foot. The Bucks enter the first game after the all-star break with just nine wins, six fewer than the Magic, who have the league's second-worst record. Knight's injury is just the latest in a season of setbacks. "Stuff has been happening this season," Knight said.

• Miami has won five consecutive meetings with the Mavericks, including an 110-104 victory on Nov. 15. LeBron James led all scorers with 39 points on an efficient 14-of-18 shooting effort.

• Dallas enters play red hot, winning six of its last seven games, including an 81-73 win over Eastern Conference-leading Indiana right before the break. Defense has been driving force, as the Mavericks have held four of its last five opponents under 100 points. "We've concentrated better. Some of those opponents might not have been great offensive teams," Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle said. "We're looking to nudge ourselves continuously in the right direction."

• The Nuggets are playing with only 10 players and no true point guard. Randy Foye will get the start again in place of the injured Ty Lawson, who is out indefinitely with a fractured rib. Coach Brian Shaw will start Jordan Hamilton at shooting guard, moving Wilson Chandler back to small forward. Evan Fournier will serve as Foye's primary backup. Shaw said Lawson is feeling better but is still vulnerable to contact.

• The Spurs will be without veteran point guard Tony Parker when they visit the Clippers tonight at Staples Center, as well as starting forward Kawhi Leonard (hand) and center Tiago Splitter (calf). However, key reserve Manu Ginobili is expected to return in a limited role after missing the last eight games with a hamstring injury. San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich said Parker has a "variety of maladies" and will be rested for the "foreseeable future." Parker, the team's leading scorer at 17.7, sat out the final game before the All-Star break, a 12-point win Wednesday against the Celtics, but played 11 minutes in Sunday's All-Star game, totaling four points, two rebounds and an assist. Cory Joseph will start in Parker's spot with Patty Mills seeing increased minutes in a backup role. Leonard will miss his 12th consecutive game and Splitter his fourth. The Spurs begin the day four games back of first-place Oklahoma City in the West and two games ahead of the Clippers, Rockets and Trail Blazers.

• Clippers starting shooting guard J.J. Redick will miss his fifth consecutive game with a sore hip, but backup Willie Green is available after missing the previous game with the same ailment, though coach Doc Rivers would rather not play Green. The Clippers also let Sasha Vujacic's 10-day contract expire without offering a renewal, so L.A. will be thin at shooting guard for at least another game. Jamal Crawford, who has been much more effective coming off the bench in his career, will continue to start in Redick's place with rookie Reggie Bullock seeing increased minutes as well.