Portland Trail Blazers' Maurice Harkless out; New Orleans Pelicans' Rajon Rondo, Nikola Mirotic available

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The Portland Trail Blazers have scratched starting forward Maurice Harkless from Tuesday night’s game against the New Orleans Pelicans.

Blazers coach Terry Stotts says he learned a few hours before tip-off that Harkless’ left knee soreness would sideline him for a game that could hold playoff implications for both teams.

The Pelicans say guard Rajon Rondo and forward Nikola Mirotic are both available to play after missing last Saturday night’s loss at Houston. However, Rondo’s right wrist sprain is keeping him out of his usual starting role, and it’s unclear how much he’ll play.

Mirotic is back from a sore right hip flexor.

Portland arrived in New Orleans in third place in the Western Conference, but just 2-plus games ahead of the fifth-place Pelicans.