Is Dereck Lively II playing tonight? Latest neck injury update on Mavericks center for Game 5 vs. Timberwolves

The Mavericks missed their opportunity to sweep the Timberwolves. Now, they have to travel back to Minnesota to try and close out the Western Conference Finals.

Dallas suffered its first loss of the series in Game 4 despite 28 points, 15 rebounds and 10 assists from Luka Doncic. It was clear the Mavericks were hurting for frontcourt depth without breakout rookie Dereck Lively II, who suffered a neck sprain in Game 3.

Reserve bigs Dwight Powell and Maxi Kleber (who just returned from a shoulder injury for the first time since the first round) could not provide the same level of energy on the glass and rim protection on defense as Lively.

Will Lively be available for Game 5 as Dallas tries to close out the series? The Sporting News has you covered with the latest updates below.

MORE: Karl-Anthony Towns shakes foul trouble to lead Timberwolves’ to Game 4 win

Is Dereck Lively II playing tonight?

The Mavericks have listed Lively as questionable for Game 5. It sounds like there is a possibility that he will be cleared to play.

“There’s obviously a chance [Lively] could play in Game 5,” The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported Wednesday.

“The good news for the Mavericks is that he is not currently in concussion protocol, but still, this is something where they wanted to be safe [when they] sat him out for Game 4. There’s a chance he’s back in Game 5, they just have to evaluate him today and tomorrow.”

The rookie center has been an important piece to Dallas’ deep playoff run. He is averaging 8.5 points, 7.1 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 1.1 blocks per game in his first postseason, providing constant pressure at the rim on both ends of the floor.

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Lively’s +109 plus/minus is good for the fifth-best of any player in the 2024 playoffs, further proving his value in just 21.5 minutes per game.

Check back for updates as they become available.

Timberwolves vs. Mavericks start time

  • Date: Thursday, May 30
  • Time: 8:30 p.m. ET | 7:30 p.m. CT

Timberwolves vs. Mavericks will tip off shortly after 8:30 p.m. ET on Thursday, May 30. The game will be played at the Target Center in Minneapolis.

What channel is Timberwolves vs. Mavericks on tonight?

  • TV channel: TNT 
  • Live stream: Sling

Timberwolves vs. Mavericks will air on TNT. Viewers can also stream the game on Sling.

Sling is the home for sports fans, as it offers a wide range of channels. You can always cheer for your favorite teams with channels like ESPN, TBS, TNT, NFL Network, FS1 and more.

Timberwolves vs. Mavericks schedule

Here is the complete schedule for the NBA Playoff series between the Timberwolves and Mavericks:

(3) Timberwolves vs. (5) Mavericks — Dallas leads 3-1

Date Game Time (ET) TV/Live stream
May 22 Mavericks 108, Timberwolves 105
May 24 Mavericks 109, Timberwolves 108
May 26 Mavericks 116, Timberwolves 107
May 28 Timberwolves 105, Mavericks 100
May 30 Game 5 8:30 p.m. TNT, Sling
June 1 Game 6* 8:30 p.m. TNT, Sling
June 3 Game 7* 8:30 p.m. TNT, Sling

*If necessary


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