The Atlanta Hawks survived the loss of their two primary small forwards on Friday night, and Saturday evening will bring another challenge for the team. Earlier in the afternoon, the team announced that both DeMarre Carroll (left Achilles strain) and Thabo Sefolosha (right calf strain) have been ruled out for the game against the Philadelphia 76ers.
Carroll was a late scratch prior to Friday's game against Portland, while Sefolosha exited after less than three minutes of game time. With Shelvin Mack (who has also been ruled out) already on the shelf, Mike Budenholzer leaned heavily on Kent Bazemore (40 minutes) and Kyle Korver (39 minutes) in order to secure that victory, and Bazemore will get the start alongside Korver on Saturday night.
Fortunately for Atlanta, the Sixers do not present the type of overall challenge of a team like Portland, but in the same breath, much of their talent is showcased on the wing in the form of players like K.J. McDaniels. It will be interesting to see how Budenholzer handles his short-handed rotation, and an increase in two-point guard lineups (hello, Dennis Schröder) or big lineups featuring Mike Scott or Paul Millsap at the small forward spot could be in the cards. In addition, John Jenkins could see the floor for his first extended action in some time, and it wouldn't be a surprise if Budenholzer elected to lengthen the use of his bench to include Mike Muscala and/or Elton Brand.
Looking toward the future, Mike Budenholzer indicated that Thabo Sefolosha will be out "a while" in pregame, with an official update to come. The status of DeMarre Carroll is up in the air, but Budenholzer wondered aloud if Carroll's injury would be "more of the short-term" variety.