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Casey Cizikas Headshot

Cizikas will be out for four weeks with his upper-body injury, Arthur Staple of Newsday reports.

Given this extended absence for Cizikas, he'll be lucky to see a dozen games left on the regular-season schedule by the time he's ready to return. As it stands now, the Islanders on the outside looking into the playoffs, and it might be in GM Garth Snow's best interest to find a suitable replacement for Cizikas if he's serious about extending the team's 2016-17 campaign. A physical pivot, Cizikas had consistently been called upon in shorthanded situations -- averaging 2:12 of ice time in that spot -- so his loss is a detriment to an already weak penalty kill that ranks 23rd in the league with a 79.8-percent success rate.
5:02 pm (EST)
A.J. Hammons Headshot

Hammons was recalled Wednesday from the D-League's Texas Legends, Eddie Sefko of the Dallas Morning News reports.

Hammons hasn't taken part in a game with the Mavericks since a Dec. 30 matchup with the Warriors, so he's spent a ton of time in the D-League getting in-game reps that he wasn't seeing with the big club. With the trade deadline approaching, the Mavericks could make some moves with the centers they have on the roster, which potentially opens a few minutes for Hammons. That said, even if he's able to garner some extra playing time, it won't be enough to make him relevant in the majority of fantasy leagues, so Hammons can continue to be avoided for the near future.
5:02 pm (EST)
Ryan Callahan Headshot

Callahan had a follow-up procedure conducted on his right hip Wednesday and will remain out indefinitely.

While the team has officially said that the injury will keep Callahan out indefinitely, Joe Smith of the Tampa Bay Times reports that Callahan is likely done for the rest of the regular season. At this point, that assessment would not be surprising considering all the trouble that this injury has caused the veteran winger this season. He'll rehab and will likely try to make it back for the NHL playoffs if the Lightning do indeed make it that far.
4:53 pm (EST)
Josh Richardson Headshot

Richardson (ankle) took part in a full practice Wednesday and has been cleared to play in Friday's game against the Hawks, Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reports.

Richardson has missed the last 19 games, but has finally gotten over his lingering ankle injury and was able to put in a full practice Wednesday. He's already been cleared by the Heat medical staff for a return Friday, so look for him to jump back into a significant role on the wing. Richardson has started 20 of the 28 games he's played in this season, although it remains to be seen if he'll immediately reclaim a role with the top unit. His return likely means a decrease in minutes for guys like Rodney McGruder and Wayne Ellington.
4:45 pm (EST)
Erik Johnson Headshot

Johnson (leg) is practicing fully and says he will be ready to play Saturday against the Sabres, Terry Frei of the Denver Post reports.

While it's difficult to take players at their own word since they generally overestimate their ability to get out there, Johnson has been rehabbing for months and the progress he's made to this point would seem to indicate that Saturday is in fact a realistic return date for him. The 28-year-old's return could provide a boost for rest of the players on team, though not enough for them to make the playoffs.
4:22 pm (EST)
Marcus Thornton Headshot

Thornton, Andrew Nicholson and a 2017 first-round pick will be sent from the Wizards to the Nets on Wednesday in exchange for Bojan Bogdanoic and Chris McCullough, Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports reports.

Thornton opened the season in a rotational role for the Wizards, but fell out of favor in January and February and hadn't seen the court in the team's last 21 games. That prompted the Wizards to add him as a sweetener to Wednesday's trade, although the first-round pick is what Brooklyn really coveted in the exchange. There's no guarantees that Thornton is thrust into a bigger role right out of the gates with Brooklyn, but Nets aren't particularly strong at shooting guard with guys like Randy Foye and Sean Kilpatrick holding down the top two spots, so Thornton should at least have the opportunity to compete for minutes.
4:19 pm (EST)
Tiago Splitter Headshot

Coach Mike Budenholzer indicated that while Splitter (calf, hip) is making progress, a return to the court isn't imminent, Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports. "He is continuing to make progress," Budenholzer said of Splitter. "He is doing more in practice situations. I think the thing is he has to do that for a sustained period of time."

Splitter has been out all season with the hip and calf injuries, but the Hawks haven't given up hope for the big man to return at some point over the team's final 26 contests. Even if Splitter is able to increase his activities and log multiple practices in a row within the next few weeks, he'll likely only serve in a minor capacity off the bench behind starting center Dwight Howard once he returns.
4:16 pm (EST)
Chris McCullough Headshot

McCullough was traded to the Wizards on Wednesday, Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical reports.

McCullough will join Bojan Bogdanovic in Washington, while the Wizards will send Andrew Nicholson and a 2017 first-round pick to Brooklyn. The 22-year-old McCullough has appeared sparingly in only 14 games for the Nets this season and has spent considerable time in the D-League. He's viewed as somewhat of a project player but showed enough potential to warrant a first-round selection in the 2015 draft.
4:11 pm (EST)
Lamar Patterson Headshot

Patterson's second 10-day contract with the Hawks expired over the All-Star break, and he wasn't re-signed by the team, Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.

With the trade deadline approaching Thursday, the Hawks decided that having an extra roster spot open was more important than retaining Patterson for the time being. The swingman has since returned to the D-League's Reno Bighorns, but once the dust settles after the deadline, coach Mike Budenholzer didn't rule out the possibility for bringing Patterson back on the roster. He averaged 2.3 points and 1.5 rebounds in 7.5 minutes per game in four appearances with the Hawks.
4:10 pm (EST)
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