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Ten Before Tip: NBA news from Saturday

POSTED: Apr 5, 2014 6:28 PM ET
UPDATED: Apr 5, 2014 6:39 PM ET news services


• Center Brendan Haywood (left foot stress fracture), power forward Josh McRoberts (left ankle sprain), and small forward Jeffery Taylor (right Achilles tendon rupture) remain out for the Bobcats, while 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) will not play for the Cavaliers.

• Bobcats small forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (back bruise) is in uniform and will start. The second-year pro landed hard on the court Friday during the first half of Charlotte's 91-80 win over Orlando, but Bobcats coach Steve Clifford said "MKG" suffered no significant damage to his back. Kidd-Gilchrist has played in -- and started -- 56 of Charlotte's first 76 games, averaging 7.2 points and 5.1 rebounds in 24.5 minutes. "He's good to go tonight, which we're obviously happy about," Clifford said.

• The Bobcats can clinch the second playoff berth in franchise history with a victory. Charlotte previously advanced to the postseason in 2010, when it won a team-record 44 games. "I feel good about our guys, the way they're working, and their attitude and their approach," first-year coach Clifford said. "We came into this season not putting a limit on how many wins we could get because we believed in this group." The Bobcats are 38-38 and sit seventh in the Eastern Conference.

• Boston has only nine players available. It will be without the backcourt of Rajon Rondo (rest) and Avery Bradley (strained Achilles tendon) and center Kris Humphries (strained patella tendon).

• The Celtics will use their 21st different lineup of the season. Jeff Green, Brandon Bass and Jared Sullinger will start up front with Jerryd Bayless and Phil Pressey in the backcourt.

• Backup point guard Will Bynum is out for the second straight game with a sore left foot. That means court time for rookie Peyton Siva, who played 21 minutes against the Nets. "I was very happy with the way Peyton played lst night, especially having not played in awhile," interim coach John Loyer said.

• Nets forward-center Kevin Garnett will return to the starting lineup after missing the past 19 games with back spasms, according to coach Jason Kidd. "Kevin will give it a shot tonight," Kidd said. "His minutes will be limited and we'll go from there." Kidd wouldn't put an estimate on Garnett's minutes, but the first-year coach is sure happy to have his veteran leader back. "He's the glue of this team," Kidd said.

• Center Brook Lopez continues to be out with a fractured right foot.

• Guard Joe Johnson has made at least one 3-pointer in a career-best 24 straight games. The franchise record is 28 held by Kidd.

• Paul Pierce needs 30 points to become the fourth active player and the 18th player in NBA history to reach at least 25,000 points. The other three active players are Kobe Bryant, Dirk Nowitzki and Garnett.

• Sixers reserve Byron Mullens is a gametime decision with a sprained left ankle while forward Arnett Moultrie is out for violating terms of the NBA/NBPA drug policy.

• The Washington Wizards recalled swingman Glen Rice from Iowa of the D-League. Coach Randy Wittman didn't sound terribly enthusiastic about the move. "Time to bring him back up," Wittman said. "I watched all of this games [on tape]."

• It's possible that the Wizards and Bulls could play each other in the first round of the playoffs. Wittman said that he's not preoccupied with that. "Not in particular," Wittman said. "I haven't looked that far down the road yet to say to look at anything like that. I want us to maintain our focus."

• Chicago coach Tom Thibodeau said that he doesn't put any more emphasis on this game because they might face Washington. "Teams are so jumbled up right now," Thibodeau said. "This is the time of year where everything is very interested because everyone is going head to head. There's meaning to every game that's being played."

• After their double-overtime win at Miami on Friday night, the Timberwolves were eliminated from playoff contention when Memphis and Phoenix won.

• Guard Kevin Martin (right foot), forward Shabazz Muhammad (right knee) and center Nikola Pekovic (right ankle) are all out for Minnesota.

• Forward Dante Cunningham, who did not play at Miami, will play tonight.

• Magic center Nik Vucevic will miss a second straight game with a sore left Achilles. The Magic are 2-17 without Vucevic this season.

• Dewayne Dedmon will get his first start for the Magic at center. "He does a lot of things that don't show up on the stat sheet," said coach Jacque Vaughn.