Utah Jazz: Earl Watson out, Gordon Hayward doubtful tonight at Portland
Scott G Winterton, Deseret News
PORTLAND, Ore. — Round 2 between the Utah Jazz and Portland Trail Blazers will be somewhat of a shorthanded shootout.
The Jazz, already without usual starting point guard Mo Williams (thumb injury), will be without Earl Watson in this 8 p.m. MST rematch at Rose Garden. The veteran backup injured his lower right leg in Friday's 86-77 Utah win at EnergySolutions Arena and did not travel with the team to Rip City.
Watson had an MRI taken on his leg in Utah on Saturday morning, which revealed multiple issues.
The 12-year veteran has bone bruising on his right fibula head and lateral tibia. He also has a small, non-displaced stress fracture on the tibia surface.
As such, Watson will be inactive until his comfort level improves, the Jazz announced.
Watson missed the first 13 games of this season while rehabbing from an April 2012 surgery to repair a torn medial meniscus in his right knee.
Sixth man Gordon Hayward is also doubtful after missing the past three games with a sprained right shoulder. He traveled with the Jazz but is unlikely to play in this quick turnaround contest.
It's also unknown whether Portland will have former Jazz guards Wesley Matthews and Ronnie Price available. They both left Friday's game early with ankle injuries.
The Jazz (25-21) come into this game having won two straight, including Friday's defensive duel with the Blazers (23-23). Led by former Weber State standout Damian Lillard's 26 points, Portland trimmed a 17-point Utah lead down to five, but the Jazz held the Blazers to just two points in the final four minutes.
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