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Ray Flowers

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Willy Hernangomez Headshot

Hernangomez produced 10 points (5-10 FG, 0-1 FT), eight rebounds, two assists and two blocks over 21 minutes in Thursday's 110-95 loss to the Trail Blazers.

With Lance Thomas (hip) out of action, Hernangomez moved back into the starting five at center while Kristaps Porzingis moved back to his familiar power forward spot. The 22-year-old saw a modest amount of minutes despite the start, but it was enough to help him generate his first double-digit scoring effort in the last four games. If Thomas is forced to miss Saturday's game against the Spurs, the young Spaniard would presumably be in for another start in what will be a tough matchup.
11:48 am (EST)
Joe Nathan Headshot

Nathan has a clause in his deal with the Nationals that allows him to opt out Friday, Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post reports.

He pitched on back-to-back days for the first time this spring Wednesday and Thursday, and while the 42-year-old hasn't looked bad so far (8:3 K:BB in 10.2 innings), the Nats already seemingly have seven relievers locked into spots after the late signing of Joe Blanton. If Nathan does opt out, he may have done enough to earn a look from another team in need of some veteran savvy in the middle innings.
11:47 am (EST)
Austin Jackson Headshot

Jackson's future with the Indians will depend on the health of left fielder Michael Brantley, who's recovering from shoulder surgery, Paul Hoynes of Cleveland.com reports.

When camp opened, it appeared the Indians could use Jackson to add outfield depth on Opening Day. That could change if Brantley's comeback continues progressing well like it has in recent days. "With Brantley back we probably wouldn't need the same number of plate appearances [from reserve outfielders]," general manager Mike Chernoff said. Jackson is coming off his own health issues that led to season-ending knee surgery last year. However, he appears healthy now and has done what he can so far in spring training. Jackson is 7-for-21 (.333) with a home run, two doubles, five RBI and four runs through seven Cactus League appearances. A decision on whether he makes the 25-man roster will come down to the wire.
11:47 am (EST)
Mindaugas Kuzminskas Headshot

Kuzminskas tallied 14 points (3-8 FG, 2-5 3Pt, 6-6 FT), eight rebounds, two assists and one steal over 32 minutes in Thursday's 110-95 loss to the Trail Blazers.

Drawing the start for Carmelo Anthony (knee), Kuzminskas turned in a solid effort that was assisted by a perfect performance from the charity stripe. The 27-year-old's scoring total represented his first double-digit performance since Jan. 29 against the Hawks, as he's seen modest minutes or been left out of the rotation altogether on numerous occasions over the last six weeks. If Anthony were to miss Saturday night's tilt versus the Spurs, Kuzminskas would presumably be in for another run with the first unit.
11:45 am (EST)
Darren Helm Headshot

Helm (lower body) will not play Friday night, but Sunday's game against the visiting Wild is a possibility, Ansar Khan of MLive.com reports.

The Red Wings have 265 total man games lost this season -- including 28 for the speedy Helm -- so what's another going to hurt a team out of the playoff race? For fantasy owners, though, he's one less special teams and scoring option likely to be found on the clearance rack in daily settings.
11:42 am (EST)
Luis Cessa Headshot

Cessa was optioned to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and reassigned to minor league camp on Friday, Brendan Kuty of The Star-Ledger reports.

The right-hander had an outside shot at breaking camp in the rotation but didn't make the cut after posting a 6.52 ERA. Cessa may wind up an option later on in the 2017 season, though, considering the likely volatility of the back end of the Bombers' starting quintet.
11:42 am (EST)
Courtney Lee Headshot

Lee poured in 16 points (6-12 FG, 0-3 3Pt, 4-4 FT), four assists, one rebound and one steal over 41 minutes in Thursday's 110-95 loss to the Trail Blazers.

The veteran guard played a team-high amount of minutes while posting his best scoring total since March 6 versus the Magic. Lee does have double-digit scoring efforts in three of his last four games and eight overall this month. He's now posting his second-best monthly scoring average (11.2) of the season in March.
11:41 am (EST)
Aaron Gordon Headshot

Coach Frank Vogel said Gordon (hip) would play Friday against the Pistons, Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel reports.

The Magic listed Gordon as questionable on their injury report heading into Friday he nursed a sore left hip, but he apparently went through morning shootaround without incident and has been given the green light to suit up Friday. Expect Gordon to assume his usual role at power forward, which should afford him around 28-to-35 minutes if the Magic are able to stay competitive throughout the evening.
11:38 am (EST)
Kristaps Porzingis Headshot

Porzingis posted 18 points (8-21 FG, 0-5 3Pt, 2-3 FT), nine rebounds, one assist, three blocks and one steal over 38 minutes in Thursday's 110-95 loss to the Trail Blazers.

Porzingis led the Knicks in scoring on the night with Carmelo Anthony (knee) out, while coming just a rebound short of his second double-double in the last three games. He continued his stretch of double-digit scoring efforts as well, one that's encompassed all 11 March contests he's participated in. Factoring in Thursday's production, he's averaging 17.9 points, 8.5 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 2.2 blocks across 33.4 minutes during the month.
11:37 am (EST)
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