Coming into the 2017-2018 season, many circled Oct. 26 as the most likely place for the Atlanta Hawks to pick up a win on a lengthy opening road trip. Of course, the Hawks managed to win the first game of the campaign in Dallas but, even as the Bulls struggle mightily on the floor, Mike Budenholzer’s team faces something of an uphill battle on Thursday evening due to injury concerns.
On Wednesday afternoon, the Hawks released a jam-packed injury report with the following information:
- Marco Belinelli (sore left Achilles) is probable.
- DeAndre’ Bembry (fractured right wrist) is out.
- Ersan Ilyasova (left knee strain) is questionable.
- Miles Plumlee (strained right quad) is out.
- Dennis Schröder (sprained left ankle) is out.
Of course, there was no mystery in the absence of Plumlee and Bembry with long-term ailments and, earlier in the day, Mike Budenholzer told assembled media that Schröder would not travel with the team. Still, the appearance from Belinelli is somewhat concerning given his preseason anonymity and Ilyasova seemingly remains a question mark when it comes to this particular contest.
For a rebuilding squad, there is no inherent reason to push aggressively with injuries and the Hawks should take every precaution as a result. Still, Atlanta could be deploying some very interesting (and potentially off-the-wall) rotations if all five players are absent from the proceedings. Stay tuned.