DALLAS — On Friday, the Dallas Mavericks will host the Los Angeles Clippers for Game 3 of their first round playoff series. The series is currently tied at 1-1, so Friday's game is unquestionably important for both teams. The Mavs and Clippers are dealing with injury concerns, however.

On Thursday, Mavericks head coach Jason Kidd revealed that Tim Hardaway Jr. and Olivier-Maxence Prosper, who are both battling ankle injures, will miss Game 3. Meanwhile, center Daniel Gafford is dealing with back spasms and his status for the game is in question as a result.

The Clippers have just one player listed on the NBA injury report, but it happens to be Kawhi Leonard who has been battling right knee inflammation.

Dallas entered Game 1 of the NBA playoffs at full strength. Gafford's final injury status will play a big role in Game 3. So is Daniel Gafford playing tonight vs. the Clippers?

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Daniel Gafford's injury status for Clippers-Mavericks Game 3

Dallas Mavericks guard Kyrie Irving (11) celebrates with Dallas Mavericks center Daniel Gafford (21) during the second half against the Phoenix Suns at American Airlines Center.
Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Gafford was initially listed as questionable for Game 3 with back spasms. It should be noted that Leonard is also questionable due to his aforementioned knee injury.

Gafford did not practice on Thursday. Mavericks head coach Jason Kidd said Gafford “watched from the sideline.” Fortunately, he has since been given the greenlight to play, according to Joey Mistretta of ClutchPoints.

Dereck Lively II and Maxi Kleber will still need to step up on Friday, especially if Gafford ends up being limited in any way. Lively is a lob threat who plays a pivotal role on defense and in the rebounding department. Kleber is also a capable rebounder who can stretch the floor.

The Clippers feature many players who like to drive and attack the basket. So protecting the basket will be important to say the least.

Gafford has played a crucial role in Dallas' success over the past few months. The Mavericks were linked to a number of centers before the trade deadline, but they ultimately acquired Gafford. Additionally, Dallas acquired PJ Washington who has positively impacted the team as well.

Both players were excited to join a contending team. And it goes without saying, but the Mavericks have been much better with Gafford and Washington on the roster.

“It's for sure taking the next step in the right direction,” Gafford said after being traded from the Washington Wizards to the Mavericks in February. “I mean, you go from a team where you weren't able to be in a position where we are now. It's just kind of like, locking in again for sure. It's kind of like the start of another season for us. Pretty much coming and just picking up where it was left off from the last game from the last team that we were on.”

Gafford and Washington are now in the playoffs with a team that features a high-ceiling.

With that being said, when it comes to the question of if Daniel Gafford is playing tonight vs. the Clippers, the answer is YES.