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Damian Lillard day-to-day after ankle sprain, will miss game vs. Rockets

Portland Trail Blazers All-Star guard Damian Lillard is likely to miss Thursday’s marquee road matchup with the Houston Rockets because of a left ankle injury, according to Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports.

Portland Trail Blazers star Damian Lillard is day-to-day with a left ankle injury and is expected to miss Thursday’s game in Houston, league sources tell Yahoo.

This is to be expected, considering that Lillard was reportedly carted to the team bus following a 115-109 upset road loss to the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday. Lillard, however, did not at any point leave the contest after tweaking his ankle in the final period of the Dallas game, so his day-to-day designation could just be more of a precautionary move for the Blazers. Lillard played for 35 minutes against Dallas and scored 29 points with eight assists and five rebounds. He did have a salty 6-for-20 shooting line from the field but was a perfect 15-for-15 from the free throw line.

There is also no urgency for the Blazers, who own a 48-30 record, to play Lillard and risk aggravating his injury. They are safely in the playoff picture in the Western Conference with a high chance of finishing third in the conference standings. The Rockets and the Golden State Warriors have secured the No. 1 and No. 2 slot, respectively, while the Utah Jazz are the only other team outside of Portland that has a shot of ending up third in the West.

After the Rockets game, Portland will travel to San Antonio to play the Spurs then to Denver for a date with the Nuggets before coming back home for the regular-season finale against the Utah Jazz on Apr. 11.