Danilo Gallinari Will not Play Against the Jazz.
Danilo Gallinari is out for tonight's game with the Jazz. Gallinari suffered an ankle injury during last night's win in Portland. Gallinari had a rough go vs. the Trailblazers going just 4-11 scoring 12 points. Even with the injury, Gallinari played 32 minutes. Gallinari is averaging 18 points and 5.7 rebounds per game.
WIth Gallinari on the shelf, Billy Donovan could choose to start rookie Darius Bazley. Bazley is averaging about 15 minutes per game in his last five but is struggling to generate any significant offensive numbers. The Thunder are already missing Hamidou Diallo, Deonte Burton and Terrance Ferguson who will likely sit out his third consecutive game with hip soreness. Abdel Nader has been staring in his spot and isn't much of an offensive threat himself.
If Donovan feels the need to get out of the box quick tonight, it would serve him and the team well to start all three ball handlers (Gilgeous-Alexander, Paul and Schroder) to generate some early scoring.
This will also put pressure on Steven Adams to be effective when given the opportunity to score. In four of his last five outings, Adams has scored in double digits with Sunday's game in Portland being the exception when Adams only netted six points. Adams has his hands full tonight with having to guard Rudy Gobert, but look for the Thunder to go to him early and often if he gets hot.
Back to Bazley, getting the chance to start especially if the Thunder decide to go with a three-guard lineup could open things up for him with Utah having to account for Schroder, Paul, and Gilgeous-Alexander. If Donovan sticks with Nader in the starting lineup it's hard to envision one of those ball handlers not on the floor during the entire game. On the Jazz side, Mike Conley will sit due to a hamstring injury.
Thunder vs. Jazz tonight at 8 on Fox Sports Oklahoma.