C. J. Watson PG IND 2 Hrs
C.J. Watson (elbow) has been ruled out for Sunday's game in Dallas.
The fact that he was ruled out so early suggests he's not close to returning, but we're considering him questionable to play in Indiana on Tuesday. Donald Sloan, Evan Turner and Lance Stephenson continue to handle backup PG duties in his absence.
Anderson Varejao (back) is likely to play limited minutes on Saturday.
Varejao may only play one stint as the Cavs' priority is avoiding any setbacks. Mike Brown has already said that he intends to keep Spencer Hawes in the starting lineup, further limiting Varejao's rest-of-season upside, but he should at least provide solid rebounds and a handful of high-percentage points once his conditioning returns.
Kyle O'Quinn PF/C ORL 2 Hrs
Kyle O'Quinn will start alongside Nikola Vucevic on Saturday, as the Magic try to match up with the Spurs.
Beat writer John Denton reports that Tobias Harris will likely shift to the bench with Moe Harkless staying at SF. Keep in mind that Jameer Nelson (illness) is returning to action for Orlando, but Victor Oladipo (ankle) will once again be sidelined. O'Quinn is averaging 8.4 points, 8.8 rebounds, 2.0 blocks and 1.2 steals in just 18 minutes per game over his last five, and he should provide solid plug-and-play value as a temporary starter.
Jeff Ayres PF/C SA 2 Hrs
Jeff Ayres (sprained finger) has been cleared to return vs. the Magic on Saturday.
He's buried on the depth chart as long as Tim Duncan, Tiago Splitter and Boris Diaw are healthy, but it's good to see the Spurs back at full strength as they go for their sixth consecutive victory.
DeAndre Liggins SG MIA 3 Hrs
DeAndre Liggins signed a second 10-day contract with the Heat on Saturday.
Liggins is a big, athletic SG but unfortunately he doesn't have an appreciable role with the Heat, having played exactly one minute this season. On a positive note, the felony charges which led to Liggins' arrest in in August have since been dropped.
Nicolas Batum SG/SF POR 3 Hrs
Contrary to a previous report, Nicolas Batum did not break his nose during Friday's game.
Batum suffered a contusion on top of a pre-existing fracture from when he played with France this summer. He is adamant that he won't wear a protective mask and there doesn't seem to be any danger of him sitting out Sunday's game, so owners should keep him active unless something changes.
Pau Gasol PF/C LAL 4 Hrs
Pau Gasol participated in Saturday's light practice and he will play vs. the Thunder on Sunday.
Gasol tweaked his ankle on Friday but X-rays were negative and it doesn't seem like a serious concern for the Lakers. What should concern them is the very real possibility that their current three-game losing streak will quickly expand to seven games -- their next four games consist of home and away sets vs. the Thunder and Spurs.
Jamal Crawford G LAC 5 Hrs
Jamal Crawford (calf) went through shootaround on Saturday and he'll be a game-time decision vs. the Hawks.
He felt "pretty good" this morning but owners will have to check for updates closer to tip-off. Darren Collison's owners should also be keenly interested in Crawford's status, considering his starting SG job is at stake.
Eric Bledsoe G PHO 5 Hrs
Eric Bledsoe (knee surgery) said that he will likely return to action vs. the visiting Cavaliers on Wednesday.
Bledsoe has been practicing and scrimmaging 5-on-5, but hasn't felt ready to play yet due to a lack of conditioning and routine soreness. He'll miss two more games, on Sunday and Monday, but patient owners can at least circle a date on the calendar. Gerald Green's production will take a hit with Bledsoe returning, and Goran Dragic's numbers may also dip, but fantasy owners are aided by a solid rest-of-season schedule featuring three four-game weeks and zero two-game duds.