Around the Association: 10 Fantasy Takeaways From the Weekend

Around the Association: 10 Fantasy Takeaways From the Weekend

This article is part of our NBA Daily Recap series.

Welcome to Around the Association!  Five days per week (Monday through Friday), this article will serve as a comprehensive recap of the previous night's NBA action, taking you through all of the biggest performances, notable box scores, injury updates and any other fantasy-relevant headlines from around the league.

It was a busy weekend across the league. Here are the 10 things you need to know about the weekend:

Nets offense erupts 

  • This was a much-needed weekend for the Brooklyn Nets, as they finished 2-0 to put their early-season record at 10-4. They started their weekend with a 120-112 win over the Pelicans on Friday. James Harden had his best offensive showing of the season, exploding for 39 points (11-18 FG, 6-10 3Pt, 11-15 FT), 12 assists, five rebounds, one steal and one block in 38 minutes of play.
  • Kevin Durant was also unstoppable during the win over New Orleans. The two-time champion dropped 28 points (11-17 FG, 3-3 3Pt, 3-4 FT), eight assists and seven rebounds in 37 minutes.
  • Jonas Valanciunas continues to stack up double-doubles, scoring 20 points (6-14 FG, 0-1 3Pt, 8-8 FT) to go with 12 rebounds in the losing effort. This marked Valanciunas' 11th straight double-double.
  • Brooklyn followed up their victory with a 120-96 beatdown of the Thunder on Sunday. Durant continued his MVP-level play, finishing with 33 points (9-17 FG, 2-6 3Pt, 13-14 FT), eight rebounds, four assists and one steal in 34 minutes of action. The Nets are 8-2 in their last 10 contests and are starting to find their form without Kyrie Irving.
  • Patty Mills caught fire in the victory over Oklahoma City. The veteran guard put in a season-high 29 points (10-16 FG, 9-12 3Pt) to go with two steals and one assist in 31 minutes of play.

No Butler, no problem

  • The Heat were without Jimmy Butler (ankle) on Saturday night as they traveled to Utah to face the Jazz. Despite not having its All-Star wing, Miami was still able to leave victorious, winning 111-105. The Heat held firm control over the game before Utah made it a little bit interesting in the end behind a strong fourth quarter. Regardless, Miami was able to hang onto the win.
    • Tyler Herro got the start in place of Butler and scored a team-high 27 points (10-23 FG, 1-7 3Pt, 6-6 FT) to go with eight rebounds, two assists and one steal in 37 minutes.
  • Kyle Lowry was very impressive in the win. He recorded 21 points (8-14 FG, 2-6 3Pt, 3-3 FT), six rebounds, four assists and two steals in 35 minutes.
  • Duncan Robinson had his best outing of the season. The sharpshooter finished with 22 points (8-14 FG, 6-11 3Pt), four rebounds, four assists and one steal in 34 minutes. This was his first time scoring over 20 points this season.
  • Jordan Clarkson was awesome for the Jazz in the loss. The reigning Sixth Man of the Year recorded 25 points (8-17 FG, 4-13 3Pt, 5-5 FT), three rebounds, three assists and two steals in 32 minutes.
  • Bojan Bogdanovic got hot late in the game for Utah. The veteran forward scored 19 of his 25 points (8-19 FG, 6-13 3Pt, 4-4 FT) in the fourth quarter as Utah's comeback bid fell short.

Pelicans snap their streak

  • It has been a horrendous start to the season for New Orleans. The Pelicans came into Saturday's contest against Memphis with a nine-game losing streak under their belt. However, the Pelicans were able to leave with a victory, beating the Grizzlies 112-101.
    • Brandon Ingram made his return to the court after missing seven straight games with a hip injury. He finished with 19 points (7-17 FG, 1-4 3Pt, 4-4 FT), four assists, three rebounds and one block in 29 minutes. New Orleans should be a much more competitive team with its young forward back in the lineup
  • Even with Ingram back in the lineup, Herbert Jones had his best outing of the season, recording 17 points (5-10 FG, 3-4 3Pt, 4-4 FT), six rebounds and one block in 29 minutes.
  • Ja Morant neared a triple-double in the losing effort, posting 22 points (8-17 FG, 3-5 3Pt, 3-3 FT), 10 assists, nine rebounds and one steal in 37 minutes. The high-flying guard ranks as the 24th best nine-category player on a points-per-game basis this season.
  • Dillon Brooks moved back into the starting lineup and finished with a team-high 23 points (8-18 FG, 2-4 3Pt, 5-5 FT) and five rebounds in 31 minutes.

Jokic returns as Denver rolls on

  • Nikola Jokic served a one-game suspension early in the week for his scuffle with Markieff Morris and the Heat, but the reigning MVP was able to return to the court this weekend and lead Denver to two more victories. The Nuggets started their weekend with a 105-96 win over the Hawks. Jokic was absolutely dominant in the win, finishing 22 points (10-22 FG, 1-8 3Pt, 1-4 FT), 19 rebounds, 10 assists and one steal in 35 minutes. This marked his second straight triple-double.
  • Aaron Gordon had an efficient day while stuffing the stat sheet during the win. The high-flying forward recorded 23 points (7-11 FG, 3-5 3Pt, 6-6 FT), four rebounds, four assists, three blocks and two steals in 34 minutes.
  • Trae Young did all he could for Atlanta during the loss, finishing with 30 points (9-16 FG, 3-5 3Pt, 9-10 FT), nine assists, five rebounds and one steal in 32 minutes.
  • The Nuggets followed their win up with a 124-95 beatdown over the Damian Lillard-less Trail Blazers on Sunday. The Joker was very close to posting his third straight triple-double, finishing with 28 points (11-17 FG, 3-3 3Pt, 3-3 FT), nine rebounds and nine assists across 28 minutes. The reigning MVP is making a strong case to be in consideration for the award once again.
  • Bones Hyland had one of his best games of the year during Sunday's win over Portland. The rookie out of VCU dropped 18 points (5-9 FG, 4-8 3Pt, 4-4 FT), three rebounds, three assists and two steals across 23 minutes. This marked Hyland's third straight game posting double-digits in the scoring column.

Bulls end Clips' streak

  • Coming off a Friday night loss to the Warriors, the Bulls faced off against a Clippers team that had rattled off seven straight wins. Chicago was able to bounce back from their loss en route to a 100-90 defeat over Los Angeles. DeMar DeRozan continues to play at an All-Star level for Chicago. The first year Bull dropped in 35 points (12-16 FG, 1-1 3Pt, 10-11 FT), seven rebounds, five assists in 37 minutes of action. This was DeRozan's fourth 30 point outing of the year.
    • Zach LaVine was incredible for the Bulls, as well. The high-flying guard dropped in 29 points (11-27 FG, 6-13 3Pt, 1-1 FT), eight rebounds and two assists in 37 minutes. This marked LaVine's 10th straight game scoring 20 or more.
  • Alex Caruso got the start for Chicago as Javonte Green slid to the bench. The fiesty guard finished with seven points (2-11 FG, 1-5 3Pt, 2-2 FT), nine rebounds, five assists, three steals and one block in a season-high 38 minutes. Caruso is turning into a valuable fantasy asset based on his steals production alone.
  • Paul George keeps balling out for the Clippers. It was not a great night from the field, but he still recorded 27 points (7-25 FG, 2-10 3Pt, 11-11 FT), 11 rebounds, four assists, one steal and one block in 34 minutes in the loss.

Lu Dort wins it in front of his mom

  • If you are looking for the storybook moment of the weekend, Luguentz Dort has got you covered. Dort's mother had never seen him play in a game throughout his career, but she attended Friday's contest against the Kings. The Kings led for most of the game, but OKC was able to comeback late. Dort finished with 22 points (9-18 FG, 2-8 3Pt, 2-3 FT), five rebounds, one assist, one block and two steals in 33 minutes. He ended the game with a steal and go-ahead layup with 1.7 seconds left to win the contest by a margin of 105-103.
  • It was not the most efficient night for Shai Gilgeous-Alexander but the young star still performed well. He posted 22 points (9-24 FG, 2-8 3Pt, 2-2 FT), two rebounds, three assists and two steals over 35 minutes.
  • No. 6 overall pick Josh Giddey's playmaking continues to stand out to me. The kid can really pass the ball. He finished with seven points (3-8 FG, 1-1 3Pt), five rebounds and five assists in 24 minutes
  • Richaun Holmes had a very productive night in the loss. The big finished with 16 points (7-9 FG, 2-2 FT), 15 rebounds, four blocks, two steals and one assist in 32 minutes.
  • Interesting to note that Maurice Harkless was moved out of Sacramento's starting lineup. Chimezie Metu drew the start and finished with a season-high 14 points (4-12 FG,3-8 3Pt,3-4 FT), five rebounds and one block in 24 minutes. The 24-year-old's situation is definitely a fantasy situation to monitor going forward.

Schroder and Trae Young take turns crushing the Bucks

  • It was not the best week for Milwaukee as it remained without Khris Middleton (COVID). The reigning champions went 0-2, suffering losses to both the Celtics and the Hawks. The Bucks were also without Giannis Antetokounmpo (ankle) for their Friday night matchup against Boston as well, but were still able to take the Celtics into overtime during a thriller. However, Dennis Schroder was able to carry the Celtics to victory, dropping a season-high 38 points (16-27 FG, 3-9 3PT, 3-3 FG) to go along with eight rebounds, three assists and one steal across 41 minutes.
    • It was also a big night for Jayson Tatum. The All-Star forward put in 27 points (10-25 FG, 5-13 3Pt, 2-4 FT), 11 rebounds, two blocks and one assist in 41 minutes of action.
  • Grayson Allen had a solid outgoing and drilled a late three to send the game to overtime. The Duke product finished with 21 points (6-16 FG, 5-9 3Pt, 4-5 FT), four rebounds and one steal in 34 minutes. In the eight consecutive games that Middleton has missed, Allen has averaged 18.3 points and 3.6 rebounds in 30.5 minutes per game. However, Middleton is expected to be back for Milwaukee's contest against the Lakers on Wednesday.
  • To add insult to injury, the Bucks had another point guard go off against them on Sunday night during their 120-100 loss to Atlanta. Trae Young poured in 42 points (16-26 FG, 8-13 3Pt, 2-2 FT), to go with 10 assists, eight rebounds, seven assists, one steal and five turnovers in 31 minutes. The All-Star point guard's eight three-pointers tied a career-high while the Hawks were able to snap a six-game losing streak with the win as well.
  • After missing their Friday night contest, Antetokounmpo returned and played well during Milwaukee's loss. The Greek Freak put up 26 points (9-21 FG, 1-5 3Pt, 7-12 FT) while recording six assists, five rebounds, one steal, one block and three turnovers in 33 minutes.

Hornets sweep the weekend, snap Warriors' streak

  • It was a great weekend for Charlotte as it finished 2-0 to improve their record to 8-7. The Hornets started their weekend with a 104-99 win over the Knicks. Miles Bridges came up clutch in the fourth quarter, finishing with 24 points (8-17 FG, 3-10 3Pt, 5-8 FT), four rebounds, four assists, two blocks and one steal in 37 minutes while also getting into a mid-game windmill contest with Obi Toppin. LaMelo Ball finished with a near triple-double, recording 12 points (4-13 FG, 0-5 3Pt, 4-5 FT), a career-high 17 rebounds, nine assists, one block and five steals over 37 minutes.
  • Kemba Walker was out for vengeance against his former team. The first-year Knick put up 26 points (9-19 FG, 4-9 3Pt, 4-5 FT), three rebounds, three assists and two steals in 31 minutes. This was a much-needed performance from Walker after he posted four straight outings with less than ten points
  • Sunday night, the Hornets next took down the Warriors by a score of 106-102, snapping Golden State's seven-game win streak. Terry Rozier came up clutch for the Hornets in one of his better games of the season, finishing with 20 points (7-14 FG, 3-8 3Pt, 3-3 FT), one assist, two blocks and one steal over 32 minutes.
  • Andrew Wiggins had another solid showing during the Warriors' loss. The 26-year-old finished with 28 points (12-19 FG, 3-7 3Pt, 1-3 FT), six rebounds and two assists across 32 minutes. Wiggins has scored 25 or more points two of his last three contests.
  • Stephen Curry nearly finished with a triple-double, posting  24 points (7-22 FG, 3-13 3Pt, 7-7 FT), 10 assists, six rebounds, one block and three steals over 36 minutes to go along with this insane pass

Mobley and Cavs keep shining

  • The Cleveland Cavaliers continue to churn out wins. They went 2-0 over the weekend with wins over both the Pistons and Celtics. Cleveland currently sits at fourth in the Eastern Conference with a 9-5 record. It was a strong weekend for Darius Garland. The third-year guard averaged 21.5 points, 6.5 assists and 3.0 rebounds in 35.5 minutes per game during Cleveland's two contests this weekend. Garland has seen over 35 minutes in seven straight showings.
  • I think that is pretty safe to say that Evan Mobley has been the best rookie to start the season. Scottie Barnes is a legit argument to being the best rookie out of the gate, but Mobley is starting to become a nightly force for the Cavaliers. The No. 3 overall selection averaged 17.5 points, 8.0 rebounds, 3.0 blocks and 2.0 steals per game across 37.5 minutes over the weekend. Mobley ranked as the 23rd-best nine-category fantasy player on a per-game basis over last week.

Steph Curry passes Ray Allen

  • The biggest milestone moment of the weekend came during Golden State's 119-93 victory over the Bulls. Stephen Curry was his usual unstoppable self, posting 40 points (15-24 FG, 9-17 3Pt, 1-1 FT), five assists, four rebounds, one steal and one block across 34 minutes. This was not just a normal shooting day for Curry, however, as the three-time champion passed Ray Allen for the most total three-pointers made all-time (including playoffs).
    • It took Curry 585 fewer games to pass Allen's mark. To put things into perspective, that is the equivalent to the Curry passing Allen's record in over seven fewer seasons. The star point guard is just 75 threes away from passing Allen's all-time regular season record.

Weekend Awards

  • Stud of the Weekend: Nikola Jokic – 25.0 points, 14.0 rebounds, 9.5 assists, 0.5 steals and 2.5 turnovers in 31.7 minutes per game
  • Dud of the Weekend: Nicolas Batum – 5.0 points, 5.0 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 1.0 blocks, 1.0 steal and 2.0 turnovers per game.
  • Rookie of the Weekend: Evan Mobley – 17.5 points, 8.0 rebounds, 3.0 blocks, 2.0 steals  and 1.5 turnovers in 37.5 minutes per game.
  • Quote of the Weekend: Spencer Dinwiddie discussing Kyle Kuzma's "no-look" passing:

Looking Ahead to Monday Night

  • The Bulls and the Lakers match up for the first time this season.
  • Gary Trent and Norman Powell get to face their former teams when the Raptors head into Portland to battle the Trail Blazers.
  • Former Kentucky Wildcat teammates Devin Booker and Karl-Anthony Towns lead their respective teams when the Suns come to Minneapolis face off against the Timberwolves.
  • The Balkan Battle between Nikola Jokic and Luka Doncic resumes when the Nuggets and Mavericks match up against each other.

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Michael Spero
Michael writes in the NBA and NCAAF departments for RotoWire. He is a big-time fan of both the Bulls and Nuggets. Michael spends his time playing pick-up or anxiously rooting for his fantasy teams.
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