A grim availability situation got a little worse on Wednesday for the Portland Trail Blazers. See shootaround update posted below.
Original Post: The Blazers' practice on Tuesday produced a number of injury updates in advance of a Wednesday night game against the Los Angeles Lakers at the Rose Garden.
- Forward Nicolas Batum (shoulder) did not practice on Tuesday but is doubtful for Wednesday.
- Guard Wesley Matthews (ankle) did not practice on Tuesday and is out Wednesday.
- Forward/center J.J. Hickson (sore lower back) did not practice on Tuesday and is questionable for Wednesday.
That would leave an assumed starting lineup of Damian Lillard, Will Barton, Victor Claver, LaMarcus Aldridge and Meyers Leonard, pending Batum and Hickson.
Updates via Chris Haynes of CSNNW.com on Twitter.
Wesley Matthews (ankle) did not [practice].
Blazers F/C JJ Hickson has a sore lower back and is questionable tomorrow vs Lakers. He did not practice.
Wes Matthews (ankle) is out against Lakers. Will Barton will most likely start in place of Wes according to Stotts. Nic Batum is doubtful.
Wesley Matthews (ankle) says he hopes he can play again this season. But he doesn't know. An MRI came back negative.
Mike Tokito of The Oregonian on Twitter.
JJ Hickson did not practice today w/ Blazers, sore back.
So for Lakers game, Matthews is out, Batum doubtful, Hickson questionable. Blazers could start 4 rookies w/Aldridge.
Batum called himself a game-time decision, but said today was first time he shot since the Utah game. Did not practice.
Update (Wednesday shootaround): Here's the latest.
Chris Haynes of CSNNW.com reports on Twitter that Matthews (ankle) and Batum (shoulder) are officially listed out. LaMarcus Aldridge (illness) is listed as "probable" while JJ Hickson (back) is a game-time decision.
If all four sit, that would leave an assumed starting lineup of Lillard, Barton, Claver, Freeland and Leonard with Eric Maynor, Luke Babbitt, Nolan Smith, Sasha Pavlovic and Jared Jeffries available as reserves.
Wednesday Pre-Game Update: Blazers coach Terry Stotts says Matthews, Batum and Hickson are out while Aldridge will play.
-- Ben Golliver | firstname.lastname@example.org | Twitter