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Fantasy Basketball Injury Updates for Week 22 - Luka Doncic, Lauri Markkanen, Kyle Kuzma

For the final time this season; welcome back, RotoBallers! It's championship week, and as always I'm here to help you stay up to date on injury news, and how it impacts your teams in case you had a busy weekend and couldn't keep track of everything. We're coming down the stretch of the regular season, and there was plenty of news on the injury front.

I'm doing this midday on Monday for release Tuesday morning, so any news that drops on Monday night won't be covered. I'll just cover what has changed since last week.

Drop me a follow on Twitter (@Maxadelphia) for all things fantasy basketball, and nightly NBA plays. Be sure to also bookmark our awesome free NBA injuries report tool for up-to-the-minute fantasy basketball injury updates.

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Short-Term Injuries for Fantasy Basketball

Luka Doncic, PG, Dallas Mavericks - Thigh

Luka was ruled for his 5th straight game last night, and there's no clear timetable for his return yet, although he has resumed participation in shoot-around.

Lauri Markkanen, PF, Utah Jazz - Back

Markanen was ruled Monday with a back issue that he presumably picked up during the Jazz's win on Saturday against the Celtics. The Jazz play three more games this week, so they're a great option. Simone Fontecchio seems like the most obvious candidate to take up those minutes, but be sure to check the box score of last night's Jazz @ Kings game to see how minutes were distributed.

Kyle Kuzma, SF/PF, Washington Wizards - Ankle

Kuzma reportedly suffered a mild ankle sprain during Saturday's loss to the Kings, and ankle injuries are notorious for lingering. This is the last week of the fantasy regular season, so we're looking for every short-term edge we can find. If Kuzma does miss time, I'd take my chances with Corey Kispert as a direct replacement option.

Alex Caruso, PG/SG, Chicago Bulls - Foot

Caruso was ruled out for last night's game in Philadelphia after apparently reaggravating a foot injury that's bothered him on and off all year. I would recommend checking the box score of that Bulls @ Sixers game to compare how Patrick Williams and Ayo Dosunmu both perform.

Tyrese Haliburton - PG, Indiana Pacers - Knee

Haliburton was ruled out two days prior to the Pacers' Monday night game in Detroit, which isn't a great sign. I would expect the Pacers to be extra cautious with their young All-Star, but they are only 1 game back of the last play-in spot, so I don't expect him out too long. With TJ McConnell also out, Andrew Nembhard has been running the show for Indiana and makes for a solid streaming option.

Week 2: Haliburton was later confirmed to be out "the next three games" which would make his earliest possible return tonight. However, there's been 0 indications that will be the case, so Haliurton is one to pay close attention to if you have him as the week progresses.

Colin Sexton, PG/SG, Utah Jazz - Hamstring 

The Jazz announced Monday (2/27) that Sexton will be re-evaluated in another week. He was missing time pre-ASB and has continued to sit. I guess I'm technically cheating by putting him in short-term considering he's already missed multiple weeks, but from this moment his injury is short-term, so cut me some slack, okay?

Update 3/16: Sexton has been week-to-week for over a month now, and he's been ruled out for another week, so if you've held on to him for this long, I'm so very sorry.


Long-Term Injuries for Fantasy Basketball

Kevin Durant, PF, Phoenix Suns - Ankle

KD didn't last long in a Suns' uniform before picking up a new injury, a freak accident caused by a slip in pregame warm-ups. Durant won't be evaluated for three more weeks, so chances are he's done in season-long formats.

LeBron James, PG/SF, Los Angeles Lakers - Foot

Just when the Lakers seemed to be turning their season around, LeBron is ruled out for "an indefinite period" with a foot injury. Look at Troy Brown or Rui Hachimura as a streaming replacement.

Update 3/2: The Lakers' medical staff determined that it will be at least three weeks until LeBron is reevaluated. I would say it's safe to drop him in redraft formats.


The Tank Corner 

The Tank Corner makes its debut, FINALLY!

Unfortunately, it's an underwhelming debut, as we don't even have full shutdowns of players yet. At this point in time, it certainly seems that the San Antonio Spurs are going to cross the finish line first. They might not have the worst record, but when you're pulling starters and going 11 men deep against fellow tankers in the Houston Rockets, it's not exactly hard to read between the lines. No doubt, Gregg Popovich knows what he's doing. The Spurs have lacked a true star since Kawhi Leonard left for Toronto, and getting one would give Pop one last run toward another title.

The next addition to the Tank Corner is one that makes too much sense. The Detroit Pistons currently hold the worst record in the NBA (as of 3/13/23) and look to be the first team to see meaningful contributors go out with injuries that just keep them out through the regular season. After losing franchise cornerstone Cade Cunningham earlier this year, the Pistons have had a season to forget. As of the night of writing this (3/13/23), the Pistons currently have six players who see meaningful minutes listed as out, with two of them recently diagnosed with four-week injuries (Isaiah Stewart and Hamidou Diallo). I expect the Pistons to continue to stink it up in hopes of a top-two pick to pair with Cunningham.

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