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Caris LeVert BKN SG
Nets' Caris LeVert: Will start at small forward Friday29m ago
Caris LeVert will start at small forward in Friday's game against the Nuggets, Brian Lewis of the New York Post reports.
With Bojan Bogdanovic traded away to the Wizards on Wednesday, the rookie out of Michigan will get the call to start on the wing in the team's first game after the All-Star break. LeVert has played 20 minutes per game off the bench this season, but he should see a slight increase in time with Bogdanovic's departure. In the one start he's had this season, LeVert struggled, shooting just 1-of-9 from the field and scoring just four points. He did play 30 minutes, however, which means the young wing should see plenty of opportunities Friday.
Tim Hardaway Jr. ATL SG
Hawks' Tim Hardaway: Will start Friday vs. Heat37m ago
Hardaway will start Friday against the Heat, Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.
Hardaway will get the start at shooting guard Friday night, shifting Kent Bazemore into the starting small forward slot. So far this February, the 24-year-old has been averaging 19.5 points, 4.3 rebounds, and 3.1 assists a game. With Dennis Schroder (suspended) out for the contest, Hardaway could take on an even bigger role Friday night.
Bobby Portis CHI PF
Bulls' Bobby Portis: Will start at power forward Friday41m ago
Bobby Portis will start at power forward in Friday's game against the Suns, K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune reports.
With Taj Gibson traded to the Thunder, the power forward position is Portis' to take over. Portis played 25-plus minutes in two of the Chicago Bulls ' last three games and recorded a total of 35 points and 14 rebounds in those two contests. Expect Portis to take on an even larger, more consistent role now that he has taken over as the starter with Nikola Mirotic continuing to fill in off the bench.
Malcolm Delaney ATL PG
Hawks' Malcolm Delaney: Will start Friday vs. Heat1h ago
Malcolm Delaney will draw the start at point guard Friday against the Heat, Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.
Dennis Schroder was suspended one game by the Atlanta Hawks on Friday after failing to report to practice due to travel issues. In his absence, Delaney will pick up his first start of the season against the Heat. The reserve point guard is averaging 5.9 points and 2.7 assists a game through 56 contests this season. Look for Lamar Patterson to also see increased minutes of the bench in Schroder's absence.
Tyler Ennis HOU PG
Lakers' Tyler Ennis: Will not play Friday1h ago
Tyler Ennis will not play in Friday's game against the Thunder but is likely to play Sunday against the Spurs, Mike Bresnahan of Spectrum SportsNet reports.
Ennis was exchanged at the trade deadline for Marcelo Huertas, but he remains in Los Angeles at this time and will be unable to join the team in Oklahoma City. The point guard should be good to go when the team returns home Sunday, but seeing as though the Los Angeles Lakers already have plenty of depth at the point guard position, Ennis is not expected to take on a major role with the team this season barring any major injuries.
David West GS PF
Warriors' David West: Plays 11 minutes off bench in return1h ago
David West (thumb) provided four points (2-4 FG), four rebounds, four assists, two blocks and one steal across 11 minutes in Thursday's 123-113 win over the Clippers.
West gave the Golden State Warriors some quality minutes off the bench in his return from a 14-game absence due to the fractured thumb, but while the starting five remains at full strength, the veteran big man is no threat to pick up much additional run in future contests. He's averaging a meager 4.1 points, 2.7 rebounds and 2.1 assists in 11.5 minutes per game on the season.
Anton Khudobin BOS G
Bruins' Anton Khudobin: Earns victory in rare appearance1h ago
Anton Khudobin turned aside 27 of 28 shots in a 4-1 win over the Kings on Thursday.
The 30-year-old was making just his 10th appearance of the year, as No. 1 Tuukka Rask has been nothing short of a workhorse this season. It hasn't helped that Khudobin has toiled to the tune of an .896 save percentage and 2.84 GAA, but a win is a win and anyone that rolled him in a spot start Thursday was rewarded handsomely.
Andrej Sekera EDM D
Oilers' Andrej Sekera: Back in action Friday1h ago
Andrej Sekera (undisclosed) will return to the lineup Friday night for a road game against the Capitals.
The veteran blueliner reportedly experienced numbness in his hand after getting in the way of an Aaron Ekblad shot in Wednesday's contest, but he appears none the worse for wear. We have Sekera projected to slot in on the second pair with Kris Russell while assuming a spot on the No. 2 power-play unit, but know that he's been ice cold as a skater searching for his first point in 10 games.
Evan Rodrigues BUF RW
Sabres' Evan Rodrigues: Called up from AHL1h ago
Evan Rodrigues will join the Buffalo Sabres for the upcoming weekend games after getting called up from AHL Rochester, the Olean Times Herald reports.
This is the third call-up for Rodrigues this season after he was demoted earlier in the week with the Sabres going on their bye week. He registered two assists in six games before going back to the Amerks, averaging over 12 minutes per game, and played a season-high 18:49 against Chicago. Rodrigues was Jack Eichel's usual linemate at Boston University, but has not played many shifts with him in the pros. He's a versatile offensive player who can score a few goals, but is not considered a top-six forward in the long run. His fantasy value is limited until he becomes a regular in the NHL.
Justin Bailey BUF RW
Sabres' Justin Bailey: Called up to big club1h ago
Justin Bailey was called up from the AHL on Friday, the Olean Times Herald reports.
Bailey appeared in 10 games for the Buffalo Sabres before being sent down to AHL Rochester during the Sabres' bye week. The big winger was averaging over 10 minutes per game before getting sent down to stay fresh and play some games for the Amerks. Head coach Dan Bylsma has not revealed his lineup for Saturday's game against Colorado, but in all likelihood Bailey will play.
Matt Niskanen WAS D
Capitals' Matt Niskanen: Ruled out Friday1h ago
Matt Niskanen (lower body) will miss Friday's home game against the Oilers, Isabelle Khurshudyan of The Washington Post reports.
Niskanen's injury stems from a knee-on-knee collision with Radko Gudas in Wednesday's game against the Flyers. This ailment really must be bothering the mobile rearguard since he's generally regarded as an Iron Man with only two missed games since the start of the 2013-14 campaign. Look for Nate Schmidt to tag into the lineup with Niskanen unavailable.
Derek Grant BUF C
Sabres' Derek Grant: Assigned to AHL1h ago
Derek Grant , who has recovered from a shoulder injury, was assigned to AHL Rochester on Friday, the Olean Times Herald reports.
After a great training camp and winning a roster spot, Grant has just three assists in 40 games with Buffalo. He was waived earlier in the year and claimed by Nashville, where he played six games before re-joining Buffalo after getting waived again. The fourth-line center has not made much of an impact on the ice or in fantasy.
Ryan Braun MIL LF
Brewers' Ryan Braun: Likely out of spring lineups for the first week1h ago
Milwaukee Brewers manager Craig Counsell said Ryan Braun probably will not play during the first week of spring games, as part of his usual spring preparationTom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports.
This is merely a normal step in the 33-year-old's typical camp progression. He's expected to play games sometime in early March, so unless something else arises, there's nothing to worry about with his health. He's coming off a 2016 revival (.305/.365/.538 with 30 home runs, 91 RBI, 80 runs and 16 stolen bases) and, despite ongoing concerns about health and age, continues to deserve a pick sometime in the third or fourth round in most fantasy drafts.
Junichi Tazawa MIA RP
Marlins' Junichi Tazawa: Working on arm angle this spring1h ago
Junichi Tazawa will work on lowering his arm angle this spring, The Sun-Sentinel reports. "He's navigating through," pitching coach Juan Nieves said. "I think there's a little bit of work to be done, but I think with the youth here, he's a great complement for us. He could be used in a shorter role, less stressful innings."
Nieves was Tazawa's pitching coach in Boston in 2013-14, the reliever's best seasons in the majors, and he feels that Tazawa's arm angle has gotten too high over the last couple of years. More concerning for his fantasy value is the suggestion that he is only fourth of fifth in the bullpen pecking order for the Miami Marlins , and won't see many high-leverage situations behind A.J. Ramos, Brad Ziegler and Kyle Barraclough. Tazawa has recorded at least 16 holds in each of the last four seasons, but could have a tough time keeping that streak alive in a lesser role for Miami.
Michael Brantley CLE LF
Indians' Michael Brantley: Taking BP indoors2h ago
Michael Brantley (shoulder) is taking normal batting practice pitching at an indoor cage Friday after previously being restricted to a soft-toss program, Jordan Bastian of MLB.com reports.
The outfielder's timetable remains up in the air, and a need to rehab into the season looks highly possible. Still, the fact he's taking cuts off live pitches offers a step in the right direction. In the waning rounds of a mixed fantasy draft, owners still can take a logical chance on at least a partial season from the 2014 AL MVP candidate.
Jurickson Profar TEX 3B
Rangers' Jurickson Profar: Will play outfield in WBC2h ago
Netherlands manager Hensley Meulens said Jurickson Profar will work as an outfielder in the World Baseball Classic, Peter Gammons of Gammons Daily reports.
Gammons also confirms previous reports that Profar will start in the Texas Rangers outfield against right-handed pitching. Working in left field during the WBC should help him hone a position he fleetingly has played before. With his new clear-cut opportunity, Profar, named the No. 1 prospect in baseball for the 2013 season, is worth a dice roll in deep fantasy leagues as a post-hype sleeper entering his age-24 season.
Bartolo Colon ATL SP
Braves' Bartolo Colon: Will start spring opener Saturday2h ago
Bartolo Colon will get the start Saturday in the Atlanta Braves ' Grapefruit League opener against the Blue Jays, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.
He'll be followed in the spring rotation by Julio Teheran, R.A. Dickey, Mike Foltynewicz and Jaime Garcia, but at this point there's been no indication from manager Brian Snitker that the regular season rotation will line up the same way. The 43-year-old Colon heads into 2017 having pitched at least 190 innings in four straight seasons and won at least 10 games in five straight, and he's got a chance this year to pass Dennis Martinez as the all-time winningest pitcher from Latin America in MLB history.
Bo Schultz TOR RP
Blue Jays' Bo Schultz: Contending for Opening Day relief job2h ago
Bo Schultz is one of many candidates vying for the few remaining spots in the Jays' Opening Day bullpen, MLB.com's Gregor Chisholm reports.
Schultz is out of minor-league options, which may actually help his chances of making the team. The 31-year-old has made 51 relief appearance in the majors, all of which came over the past three years, and owns a career 4.54 ERA over 67.1 innings. Even if Schultz leaves camp with a job on the 25-man-roster, he's unlikely to make a fantasy impact as he'll primarily be used in low-leverage situations.
Rob Gronkowski NE TE
Patriots' Rob Gronkowski: Expresses no doubt with regard to Week 1 status1h ago
Rob Gronkowski , who was placed on IR this past December after undergoing a procedure on his back, relayed that he has "no doubt" that he will be ready for the start of the upcoming regular season, CSN New England reports.
While Gronkowski's optimism on the injury front is encouraging, the tight end's status will still be worth monitoring closely in the coming months due to his lengthy history of back woes (including three surgeries) as well as other assorted ailments. When healthy, Gronkowski -- who turns 28 in May -- is fantasy's top tight end, but following a 2016 campaign in which he only played eight games, logging 25 catches for 540 yards and three TDs in the process, his durability issues will no doubt be a concern for prospective fantasy owners. Meanwhile, fellow tight end Martellus Bennett -- who filled in capably for Gronkowski down the stretch -- is headed toward free agency and is a candidate to sign elsewhere this offseason.
Zak DeOssie NYG LB
Giants' Zak DeOssie: Signs two year extension with Giants1h ago
Zak DeOssie signed a two-year extension with the New York Giants on Friday, James Kratch of NJ.com reports.
The long snapper, now 33, has spent his entire career with the Giants and is now one of two remaining players, along with Eli Manning, from both Super Bowl championship teams. He played in all 16 games last season after an injury-plagued 2015 campaign.
C.J. Spiller NYJ RB
Chiefs' C.J. Spiller: Agrees to deal with Kansas City3h ago
C.J. Spiller signed a contract with the Kansas City Chiefs on Friday.
Though he's just 29 years old, the former No. 9 overall pick in the 2010 NFL Draft has settled into the journeyman phase of his career since his breakout 2012 campaign with the Bills, during which he picked up a career-high 1,244 yards on 6.0 yards per carry. Following his exit from Buffalo after the 2014 season, Spiller has had abbreviated stints with the Saints, Seahawks and Jets, finding little success at any stop. The Chiefs will likely bring Spiller to training camp with the hope that he can still offer some value as a third-down back or returner, but even if he's able to win a spot on the 53-man roster, he likely won't see enough touches to approach fantasy relevance in most leagues.
Nick Folk NYJ K
Nick Folk: Released by Jets22h ago
Nick Folk was released by the Jets on Thursday.
Folk was the Jets' kicker for the past seven seasons. For his career he's converted 81.3 percent of his field goals, including 27 of 31 in 2016. It appears the Jets cut ties with Folk to free up some salary cap room, but it remains unclear who'll be their kicker in 2017.
Alterraun Verner TB DB
Buccaneers' Alterraun Verner: Will be released Thursday22h ago
Alterraun Verner will be released by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Thursday, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.
Verner would have been owed $6.5 million in 2017. He saw a reduced workload in 2016 compared to his first two seasons in Tampa Bay, recording only 16 tackles compared to 76 and 56 in 2014 and 2015, respectively. A big reason for this regression was the emergence of rookie Vernon Hargreaves, who took over as the starting corner opposite Brent Grimes last season and racked up 76 tackles, one interception and one forced fumble. Verner still has value as a defender, and should find himself on an NFL roster come September.
Breno Giacomini: Released by Jets22h ago
Giacomini (back) was released by the Jets on Thursday, Brian Costello of the New York Post reports.
Giacomini spent the past three seasons with the Jets, serving as their starting right tackle when healthy. He underwent back surgery in January to repair a herniated disc that forced him to end the 2016 campaign on injured reserve. He's now a free agent and can sign with any team.