The Atlanta Hawks are finally getting healthy with the return of Dewayne Dedmon and Mike Muscala to action but, on Friday evening, Mike Budenholzer will not have his full rotation to work with against the Brooklyn Nets. On Thursday, the team officially added Marco Belinelli to the injury report as questionable with a sprained left ankle and, hours before tip-off, official word came down that he would not take the floor.
All indications are that Dedmon (left tibia stress reaction), Muscala (sprained left ankle) and Taurean Prince (dislocated right ring finger) will play despite “probable” designations but the absence of Belinelli is noteworthy. On the defensive end, the veteran is certainly not an asset but the Hawks certainly take advantage of the spacing created by his shooting stroke offensively (11.8 points per game on 38.6 percent shooting from three) and that absence will leave a real hole in the rotation.
In his stead, the Hawks could turn more to Tyler Dorsey, who has been appearing regularly in the recent past. Beyond that, Isaiah Taylor could return to action after exiting the rotation on the team’s recent road trip, as a backcourt pairing with Malcolm Delaney has been effective this season in a limited sample.
Rotation questions already existed prior to this hiccup but it will also be interesting to see the severity of Belinelli’s injury and the duration of his unavailability. Stay tuned.