Danilo Gallinari out for Thunder at Jazz, Darius Bazley to start
Thunder Rookie Darius Bazley is scheduled to make his first NBA start Monday, while Danilo Gallinari (left ankle sprain) is sidelined by injury at Utah.
"I think he's got a really bright future ahead of him," Thunder coach Billy Donovan said of Bazley. "He's a great kid , picks things up very quickly. He's obviously very young, so he's going to get stronger. He's going to gain more experience.
"There's a lot of things he can do athletically. He can handle the ball, he can pass. I think he'll become a better shooter, a more consistent shooter. But I think you look at him as a player, there's really nothing he can't do. He's good at everything, now what he really emerges to to become elite at, we'll wait and see."
The 19-year-old forward is averaging 4.1 points 16.7 minutes off the bench this season and shooting 35.7 percent from 3-point range.
Gallinari suffered the injury in the Thunder’s 108-96 win at Portland Sunday, per the Thunder. He is averaging 18.3 points in 22 games this season and shooting a team-leading 40.3 percent from 3-point range.
"We’ll probably just evaluate him again tomorrow and keep seeing how he’s feeling," Donovan said. "It’s not like something we’re overly concerned about, but he did kind of sprain it, tweak it, twist it, whatever you want to call it yesterday."
Gallinari joins Hamidou Diallo (right elbow hyperextension sprain), Terrance Ferguson (right hip soreness) and Andre Roberson (left knee injury recovery) on the Thunder injury report.
Tip-off between the Thunder and Jazz is scheduled for 8 p.m. Monday.