Mitchell Robinson

Injury Updates: Haliburton, Jones, Sochan, Fox, Robinson, Reaves

Star Pacers point guard Tyrese Haliburton will play on Thursday night for the first time since January 11, he confirmed to reporters, including Dustin Dopirak of The Indianapolis Star (Twitter link).

The 6’5″ guard sprained his left elbow and incurred a mild left knee bone contusion last month against the Knicks. When healthy, Haliburton has been performing at an All-Star level during his third pro season. He’s averaging 20.2 PPG on .480/.399/.880 shooting splits, 10.2 APG, 4.0 RPG, and 1.8 SPG for Indiana.

We have more notable injury updates:

  • Spurs point guard Tre Jones and rookie power forward Jeremy Sochan had to leave Wednesday night’s game with injuries and were ruled out for the rest of the evening upon being examined by the team’s medical staff, reports Tom Orsborn of The San Antonio Express-News (via Twitter). Jones suffered a left foot injury, while a sore lower back sidelined Sochan. Orsborn adds that Sochan will miss Friday’s game against the Sixers, but Jones is probable to play.
  • Personal reasons will keep Kings point guard De’Aaron Fox sidelined for the team’s next game Friday, tweets Jason Anderson of The Sacramento Bee.
  • Knicks starting center Mitchell Robinson will sit tonight as he continues to recuperate from right thumb surgery, reports ESPN’s Tim Bontemps (Twitter link).
  • Lakers head coach Darvin Ham indicates that reserve shooting guard Austin Reaves may return to the floor for Los Angeles as early as Saturday against the Pelicans, in the final contest of the team’s current five-game road trip, per Jovan Buha of The Athletic (via Twitter). Reaves has been sidelined with a sprained hamstring since early January.

New York Notes: Nets Trade Talk, Simmons, Vaughn, Dolan, Robinson

The Nets are one of the more active teams on the trade market, sources tell Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer.

Joe Harris, Seth Curry and/or Patty Mills could potentially be on the move due to their short-term salaries and reduced roles, O’Connor notes. Beyond that, they could only dangle young players Day’Ron Sharpe and Cam Thomas, their 2028 or 2029 first-round pick, and a future first-rounder from Philadelphia in 2027 or 2028.

We have more on the New York teams:

  • The Nets’ Ben Simmons says that coach Jacque Vaughn hasn’t really informed him why he’s often been on the bench in late-game situations, Brian Lewis of the New York Post tweets. “I really had no message from him. I think it’s more just wherever team needs,” Simmons said. “When we’re winning I have no problem with it; if we’re losing then I got an issue.”
  • Speaking of Simmons, Vaughn says he expects him to be more consistent in the second half of the season, according to Nick Friedell of ESPN. Simmons had a 10-point third quarter against Philadelphia on Wednesday and the coach wants to see that offensive aggression more often. “That’s the goal,” Vaughn said. “That’s where we’re going to get him to, where each possession he has to be dealt with on both ends of the floor. Where you feel him on both ends of the floor and he imposes his will and has an impact on every single possession, which he has the ability to do. That’s where we’re going to get to, that’s the challenge and we’re going to continue to expect it from him.”
  • Knicks owner James Dolan figures it’ll be another month or so before center Mitchell Robinson returns to action, Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News relays (Twitter link). In a Fox5 interview, Dolan said the Knicks will have to “make it through the next four weeks” without Robinson. Robinson underwent thumb surgery last week and is expected to be reevaluated in approximately two weeks.

Mitchell Robinson Out At Least Three Weeks After Thumb Surgery

Starting center Mitchell Robinson underwent successful surgery on Thursday to repair a right thumb fracture, the Knicks announced (via Twitter). He will miss at least three weeks, which is when he will be reevaluated.

Robinson exited Wednesday’s loss to Washington with the injury, which was initially ruled a sprain until the fracture was discovered upon further testing. The 24-year-old has dealt with a number of injuries in his five NBA seasons, including hand and foot surgeries in 2021 to repair fractures. He also missed eight games in November with a knee sprain.

It’s a tough blow for New York, as Robinson anchors the team’s 11th-ranked defense. He’s also one of the top offensive rebounders in the NBA, trailing only Steven Adams in total offensive rebounds (165) and offensive rebounding percentage (16.9%).

Through 38 games, Robinson is averaging 7.2 points, 8.9 rebounds and 1.8 blocks in 26.9 minutes per contest. Backup centers Isaiah Hartenstein and Jericho Sims will be in line for more minutes with Robinson out.

New York Notes: Warren, Nets, A. Williams, Robinson, Knicks

With Kevin Durant sidelined due to a knee injury, Nets forward T.J. Warren feels as if he’s capable of stepping up and taking on a bigger role. However, as Brian Lewis of The New York Post writes, Warren is still on a minutes limit after missing nearly two years of action, and while he recognizes it’s in his best interest, he can’t help but be frustrated by it.

“Yeah, it’s super-frustrating, trust me,” Warren said. “It’s trying to find a balance (between) being out two years but also knowing that I feel like I can carry the load a little bit during those long stretches.

“But just got to put my trust and training staff’s hands. … They’ve been doing a great job with me, got me back to this point, and just got to see the bigger picture, end of the season, playoffs, playing at my best, hopefully off the minute restriction.”

Warren has averaged 20.7 minutes per game in 19 appearances since making his season debut. In the Nets’ last three games with Durant unavailable, he has averaged 16.0 points in 24.9 minutes per night.

Here’s more on the NBA’s two New York-based teams:

  • Despite losing all three of their games since Durant’s injury, the Nets remain upbeat and confident that they’ll be able to right the ship and avoid a repeat of last season’s 5-16 slide without KD, Lewis writes in another New York Post story. “Last year it was… it was kind of a toxic environment,” Nic Claxton said. “We didn’t know if everybody wanted to be here at the time. This year there’s no divide between everybody that’s out there. We’re going to figure it out.” As Lewis notes, Claxton’s comments appear to be referencing James Harden, who asked to be traded during Durant’s absence.
  • After being waived by the Nets last week, rookie guard Alondes Williams has rejoined the Long Island Nets, Brooklyn’s G League affiliate, according to Chris Milholen of NetsDaily. Williams had spent plenty of time with Long Island on his two-way contract, but is now an NBA free agent and would be free to sign with any team if he gets an offer.
  • Knicks center Mitchell Robinson left Wednesday’s game due to a sprained right thumb and will undergo further evaluation on Thursday to determine the severity of the injury, per Zach Braziller of The New York Post. If Robinson misses time, big man Jericho Sims will likely reclaim a rotation role for New York.
  • Knicks head coach Tom Thibodeau isn’t concerned about how much court time his top players are seeing, referring to critics of his rotation as the “minutes police,” Braziller says in another story for The New York Post. “I know you guys like to create the narrative for your stories and you don’t look at it in totality,” Thibodeau said. “I don’t think we have anyone in the top 20 in minutes played.” As Braziller details, in the 15 most recent games entering Wednesday night, Julius Randle and Jalen Brunson were in the NBA’s top five in minutes played, while Quentin Grimes was 14th. However, all three players rank much lower among the full-season minutes leaders.

Atlantic Notes: Irving, Knicks Rotation, VanVleet, Siakam

Kyrie Irving hasn’t been able to produce during the fourth quarter since Kevin Durant was sidelined by a knee injury, Brian Lewis of the New York Post notes. Against Boston on Thursday, the Nets star guard shot 3-of-10, missing all three 3-point attempts, in the last 12 minutes. Against the Thunder on Sunday, Irving had just two points on 1-for-4 shooting in the fourth quarter.

“I’m doing the best job I can. I wish I could make a few more shots within the minutes and be efficient,” Irving said of those Nets’ losses. “I know that’ll come, and I’ll continue to prepare the best way I know how and be a better example for the guys in the locker room.”

The Nets were without both stars on Tuesday. Irving missed the game against San Antonio with right calf soreness, Nick Friedell of ESPN tweets.

We have more from the Atlantic Division:

  • Jalen Brunson, Quentin Grimes, RJ Barrett, Julius Randle, Mitchell Robinson and Immanuel Quickley have absorbed a vast majority of the minutes in Tom Thibodeau’s latest Knicks rotation, according to Fred Katz of The Athletic. The Knicks could use another source of offense if they continue with that rotation, which means a trade to address that need is a possibility. Houston’s Eric Gordon or a wing player could be the target.
  • With Fred VanVleet likely to decline his player option in order to become a free agent this summer, the Raptors are in a tricky situation regarding their point guard, Eric Koreen of The Athletic writes. A hot streak by VanVleet could help them move him for a suitable package before the deadline. If the Raptors decide not to trade him, they had better be prepared to make a serious long-term commitment this summer, despite his off year.
  • If the Raptors can get an offer for Pascal Siakam like Utah did for Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell, they should strongly consider it, Yossi Gozlan of HoopsHype opines. Toronto could seek multiple unprotected first-round picks, prospects, and good veterans on team-friendly deals for Siakam. Teams like Dallas, Phoenix, and Atlanta would be great fits for Siakam and could all make strong offers for him, Gozlan adds. That would facilitate a reshaping of their core group without an extended rebuild.

21 More NBA Players Become Trade-Eligible

Today is Sunday, January 15, which means that nearly two dozen players who signed free agent contracts meeting specific criteria this past offseason are now eligible to be traded.

Most offseason signees became trade-eligible on December 15, but players who met the following criteria were ineligible to be moved for an extra month:

  1. The player re-signed with his previous team.
  2. He got a raise of at least 20%.
  3. His salary is worth more than the minimum.
  4. His team was over the cap and used Bird or Early Bird rights to sign him.

The following players met that criteria and are eligible to be traded as of Sunday:

(* Players marked with an asterisk have the ability to veto trades.)

Most of the players on NBA rosters are now eligible to be moved, though a small handful still can’t be dealt. That group includes Thunder guard Isaiah Joe, who becomes trade-eligible on Monday, Bucks swingman Pat Connaughton (trade-eligible on Wednesday), and Thunder forward Kenrich Williams (trade-eligible on Friday).

There are also several players who won’t become trade-eligible before this season’s February 9 deadline, including Lakers star LeBron James. Players on 10-day contracts are also ineligible to be dealt.

Knicks Notes: Toppin, Barrett, Robinson, Hartenstein, Sims, Brunson, Thibodeau

Knicks forward Obi Toppin could make his long-awaited return to action on Monday night. He went through a full practice on Sunday and should be available to play against the Bucks, Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News tweets.

Toppin, who has not played since Dec. 7 due to a right leg injury, was medically cleared to return earlier this week, but needed more practice reps before the Knicks were comfortable reinserting him into the rotation.

RJ Barrett is listed as doubtful due to a lacerated right index finger, the team tweets.

We have more on the Knicks:

  • Mitchell Robinson grabbed 18 rebounds in 35 minutes, including eight on the offensive end, against Toronto on Friday. Robinson has noticed teams are trying to block him out with multiple players on the offensive glass and takes pride in that fact, Bondy writes. “I’m a dangerous man,” Robinson said. “You got to put three guys on me to keep me off the glass. That says a lot. I’m really becoming something.”
  • With Toppin ready to reclaim his spot as the backup power forward, Isaiah Hartenstein or Jericho Sims will be dropped from the rotation, Bondy adds in the same story. “Whatever we decide to do, that’s part of sacrificing for the team and putting the team first,”  coach Tom Thibodeau said.
  • The Knicks have won four straight and Jalen Brunson has emerged as the team’s closer, according to Bondy. Brunson had 10 points in the final six minutes against Toronto. “What I try and do is try and relax and stay poised in those moments,” Brunson said. “Everyone talks about pressure and all that stuff, but just got to trust your mechanics, trust everything you do.”
  • Thibodeau has notched 100 coaching victories since being hired by the Knicks, Steve Popper of Newsday notes. “I’m glad to be a part of all 100. Thibs has come in here and created a great culture for all of us,” Julius Randle said. “He’s been amazing. The support, holding us accountable, the belief for us to win every night. I’m happy for him. We’ve got to get him another hundred.”

New York Notes: Anunoby, Knicks Front Office, Robinson, Claxton

Prior to the team’s hot streak, someone within the Knicks organization reached out to the Raptors to inquire about a potential deal for OG Anunoby, Ian Begley of SNY TV reports. That would have signaled a major roster shakeup. Anunoby is averaging 18.7 points, 5.8 rebounds and 2.4 steals per game. The Knicks would have needed to surrender serious assets to acquire Anunoby, who has two years left on his four-year, $72MM contract.

We have more from the New York teams:

  • In the same piece, Begley reports that the Knicks were a few defeats away from a major shakeup after getting blown out by Dallas on Dec. 3. Even before that loss, a top Eastern Conference executive tried to convey through back channels that he would be an ideal candidate for team president if Leon Rose lost his job.
  • Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau hasn’t always seemed particularly enamored with center Mitchell Robinson. But Thibodeau feels Robinson has been a major catalyst during the seven-game winning streak. “Every game, it’s protecting the rim, making good decisions, guarding the pick and roll and then offensively, his offensive rebounding, then putting pressure on the rim,” the coach said. Robinson is in the first year of a four-year, $60MM contract.
  • Nets center Nic Claxton recently declared he should be a prime candidate for the Defensive Player of the Year award. His coach and teammates certainly value his rebounding and defense, Brian Lewis of the New York Post writes. “He guards multiple positions for us … coming over to the weak side, blocking shots, putting pressure on the rim, rebounding,” coach Jacque Vaughn said. “The games he doesn’t play, we miss him; it puts an extreme amount of pressure on other guys — there’s not another guy on our team that can do the things Nic does.”

Atlantic Notes: M. Robinson, Knicks, Trent, Hauser

Responding early on Wednesday morning to a fan who asked him about the possibility of working with Amar’e Stoudemire on his post moves, Knicks center Mitchell Robinson replied, “The way we play is not set up for me to do any moves.”

As Stefan Bondy of The New York Daily News writes, Robinson’s tweet could have been read as a simple statement of fact about the Knicks’ system, or it could have been interpreted as a “subliminal complaint” about his role, since the big man has occasionally griped about his lack of involvement on offense in the past.

Robinson answered that question during and after Wednesday’s game against Milwaukee. He scored 15 points and racked up 20 boards, including 11 on the offensive glass, then told reporters in his postgame media session that he has no complaints about his role, per Zach Braziller of The New York Post.

“If I was unhappy, I wouldn’t have (done) what I came out here and did today and last game,” Robinson said. “I would’ve just chilled out and just (said), ‘Oh well.'”

Here’s more from around the Atlantic:

  • There is “heightened scrutiny” on the Knicks‘ game-by-game performance internally at MSG, according to Ian Begley of SNY.tv. There has been some speculation that head coach Tom Thibodeau‘s seat could get hotter if the team doesn’t show signs of taking a step forward, but Begley says “the entire organization is under the microscope” in the wake of an up-and-down 10-12 start.
  • With a potentially huge payday looming during the 2023 offseason, it’s a big year for Raptors wing Gary Trent Jr., who put in extra work in an effort to break out of a recent slump, as Michael Grange of Sportsnet.ca details. Challenged by head coach Nick Nurse to be more disruptive on defense, Trent has 11 steals in his last four games and poured in a season-high 35 points on 12-of-20 shooting off the bench on Wednesday in New Orleans.
  • Celtics sharpshooter Sam Hauser is enjoying a breakout season in Boston, notes Chris Mannix of SI.com. While Hauser’s traditional stats – including 7.5 PPG on .514/.479/.778 shooting – are solid, it’s his advanced stats that really jump off the page. The former undrafted free agent leads the Eastern Conference in offensive rating (124.1) and net rating (+19.1) through his first 22 games. Boston re-signed Hauser to a three-year, minimum-salary contract over the summer, locking him into a team-friendly deal through 2024/25.

Knicks Notes: Brunson, Rose, Barrett, Robinson

A right quad contusion may force Jalen Brunson to miss his first game since signing with the Knicks, according to Peter Botte of The New York Post. Brunson suffered the injury in the fourth quarter of Friday’s loss to Portland. He sat out today’s practice and is listed as questionable for Sunday when New York hosts the Grizzlies.

Brunson has been worth the $104MM investment that the Knicks made in free agency, leading the team with 21.8 points and 6.5 assists per game through the first quarter of the season. He has also become an on-court leader for a franchise that spent years searching for an answer at point guard.

“The leadership, I think point guard is a leadership position, and it helps you to manage and control the team,” coach Tom Thibodeau said. “I think Jalen is so team-oriented, I think it makes your team play unselfishly. I think we’re scoring a lot of points, and he gives us an attack, a pace to the game, downhill, guys are playing off each other. And if you move and you’re open on a cut, he’s gonna hit you. He wants to get the ball up the floor fast and when we do that, I think it presents a lot of easy scoring opportunities for everybody.” 

There’s more from New York City:

  • Derrick Rose participated in most of today’s practice after missing the past two games with an injured toe, Botte adds. Thibodeau said Rose looked “better,” but he’s still questionable for Sunday. Immanuel Quickley and Miles McBride figure to see additional playing time if Brunson and Rose are out.
  • RJ Barrett‘s extended shooting slump continued Friday, but he told reporters, “I’m fine. Don’t worry about me. I’m fine,” writes Zach Braziller of The New York Post. Barrett made 6-of-22 shots against the Trail Blazers and is now 36-of-114 in his last seven games. Thibodeau thought Barrett was too focused on trying to draw fouls rather than attacking the basket, and Barrett seemed to agree. “They were getting everything, I thought I would get some. Sheesh,” he said, referencing Portland’s 51 free throw attempts. “Second half I started going in more aggressively, trying to finish. I played a little better.”
  • Mitchell Robinson, who had to leave Monday’s game due to pain in his right knee, admitted that the knee still isn’t 100% but he’s trying to be available for the team, Braziller adds. Robinson played 23 minutes Friday with 12 points and eight rebounds.