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Posted Mar 30, 2014 3:37 PM - Updated Mar 30, 2014 8:57 PM
• The Lakers will definitely be without Pau Gasol, Jordan Farmar and Xavier Henry when they take on the Suns tonight at Staples Center and it's looking like Steve Nash won't face his former team either. Gasol, the leading scorer (17.5) and rebounder (9.8) for L.A., is still dealing with issues related to vertigo, which first arose during a game last Sunday against the Magic. He will miss his fourth consecutive game. Farmar is nearing a return from a groin injury that occurred March 17 but it won't come tonight. Henry will miss his second straight game with a bothersome right knee that previously kept him out all of January and February. Nash played 15 minutes in Friday's 36-point loss to the Timberwolves but is still nursing nerve-root irritation in his back that will likely limit him to spot appearances down the stretch. The Lakers will go with a starting lineup of Chris Kaman at center, Jordan Hill and Kent Bazemore at forward and Jodie Meeks and Kendall Marshall in the backcourt.
• The Warriors will be without David Lee (strained right hamstring) and Andrew Bogut (pelvis/groin contusion). Bogut had an MRI that revealed no structural damage. Both players are listed as day-to-day. Though Bogut's injury could force him to miss a few games, including the upcoming two-game road trip at Dallas and San Antonio that begins Tuesday. "It could have been a lot worse than day-to-day," Warriors coach Mark Jackson said.
• Replacing Lee (forward) and Bogut (center) in the starting lineup will be Marreese Speights and Jermaine O'Neal.
• In the wake of the injury news, the Warriors signed 6-foot-11 center Hilton Armstrong to a 10-day contract. Armstrong was playing on the team's NBA Development League affiliate in Santa Cruz where he averaged 12 points, 7.4 rebounds and 1.75 blocks in 28.2 minutes.
• The Nets stated in a press release that Andrei Kirilenko (sprained left ankle) will return Tuesday (vs. Houston) or Wednesday (@ New York), while Kevin Garnett (back spasms) could return as early as Friday (vs. Detroit) or as late as next Wednesday (@Orlando).
• If Deron Williams records a steal for the twenty-second straight game tonight, he will break Jason Kidd's single season franchise record.
• The Celtics will wear Boston Fire Department shirts in place of their normal warmups for tonight's game in honor of two Boston firefighters that lost their lives while fighting a blaze last Wednesday in Boston.
• Having clinched their division Friday night, the Raptors have some decisions to make about minutes in their remaining 10 games. "We still are fighting for positions in the playoffs, so we have to keep the same mental approach," said coach Dwane Casey. "That's always a hard balance because we're not in the situation where we can give guys total days off. I wish we could, but our starters have had a lot of minutes. That's tough because sooner or later, you have to pay for it."
• Forward Patrick Patterson will miss a 13th game with a right ulnar collateral sprain, but Casey is hopeful Patterson will be able to play Monday night in Miami.
• The Raptors can clinch their first winning season in seven years with a win.
• Thunder backup point guard Reggie Jackson will not play today because of a sprain in his mid-back area. Jackson warmed up before the game but was moving pretty gingerly. Jackson also missed Friday's game with Sacramento and was held out of practice Saturday. Russell Westbrook will start and remains on a 32 minutes per game restriction. Rookies Andre Roberson and Steven Adams will continue to fill-in for injured starters Thabo Sefolosha and Kendrick Perkins. OKC has played only 20 games this season with the regular five starters in place (17-3) and is 4-1 with the group that makes up the starting lineup today.
• Jazz guard Alec Burks will be a game-time decision. He has missed the last four games with a sprained left ankle. "He looked good in practice yesterday and he's warming up so we'll see how he feels and go from there," said Jazz head coach Ty Corbin a few minutes ago in the back hallway.
• Pacers center Andrew Bynum (right knee soreness) is expected to play again this season, according to coach Frank Vogel. Bynum signed with Indiana on Feb. 1, but has only appeared in two games, averaging 11.5 points and 9.5 rebounds. "We want Andrew back as soon as possible, but we just don't know when that will be," Vogel said. "When he was out there, we saw that he was a heck of a basketball player, not just a really big guy." Bynum began the season with the Cavaliers and played in 24 games before being suspended for conduct detrimental to the team, then was traded to the Bulls on Jan. 7, who immediately released him.
• Cavaliers point guard Kyrie Irving (left biceps strain) will miss his eighth straight game, but is being re-evaluated today. The two-time All-Star, who is averaging team highs of 21.2 points and 6.2 assists, was injured on March 16 at the Clippers. Cleveland is 3-4 during Irving's ongoing absence. "You have to give (coach) Mike Brown credit because they're playing really well without Kyrie," Vogel said. "They've had some impressive performances -- even in losses -- because they've been able to reshape their team on the run, which is not easy to do."
• Pacers point guard C.J. Watson (right hamstring strain) is traveling with the team -- unlike Bynum -- and is expected to return to action in approximately one week. Cavaliers shooting guard C.J. Miles (left ankle sprain), rookie power forward Anthony Bennett (left patellar tendon strain), and rookie shooting guard Carrick Felix (left patellar stress fracture) remain out.
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