It was a great night to own some stud players Wednesday, as Chris Paul, and James Harden went off, and DeMarcus Cousins and Russell Westbrook had triple-doubles. Just in time, huh?
These guys all sat out Wednesday’s action, for one reason or another.
- Spencer Dinwiddie (ankle)
- Greg Monroe (knee)
- Cody Zeller (shoulder)
- Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (ankle)
- Garrett Temple (hamstring)
- Paul Pierce (rest)
- Evan Fournier (hip)
- Tim Hardaway (wrist)
- Cole Aldrich (DNP-CD)
- Paul George (leg)
- Derrick Rose (knee)
- Kyle Lowry (back)
- Kevin Martin (hamstring)
- Gary Neal (ankle)
- Ricky Rubio (ankle)
- Gorgui Dieng (concussion)
- Richard Jefferson (DNP-CD)
- Andre Roberson (ankle)
- Nick Collison (ankle)
- Rudy Gay (concussion)
- Donatas Motiejunas (back)
- Dwight Howard (knee)
- J.J. Hickson (knee)
- Rodney Hood (concussion)
- Jamal Crawford (calf)
- Jrue Holiday (leg)
- Nick Young (knee)
- Robert Sacre (DNP-CD)
- Ed Davis (DNP-CD)
FANTASY LINE OF THE NIGHT
Probably the toughest decision of the season, but I went with Chris Paul for the line of the night, with his 41 points (13-21 FG, 5-9 3Pt, 10-10 FT) with five rebounds, 17 assists, and four steals against the Blazers in a big victory. I could’ve rolled with DeMarcus Cousins or James Harden, but Paul’s brilliance in six categories got him over the line. Somewhat remarkably, Paul has yet to miss a game this season, notable because of the reasons forcing him down draft boards in the preseason was his fragility and yearly injury. Congratulations if you made the move to acquire CP3.
ROTATION NOTES AND QUIRKS
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope was limited to just 14 minutes due to four fouls and ineffectiveness. He hasn’t lost the job to Jodie Meeks, who dropped 15 points, so if you do own KCP, I wouldn’t make a panic move based on this one performance.
Jerami Grant replaced Robert Covington in the starting lineup, but both players were awful. You can find a better option than Covington in most standard leagues.
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Paul Pierce sat out due to rest, so Otto Porter joined the starting five and excelled, scoring 15 points with seven rebounds and to steals in 38 minutes. If he were to hold onto a big role, he could be a fantasy option, but given Randy Wittman’s reticence to use him correctly, I’m leaving Porter alone, except in dynasty leagues.
Kris Humphries played his first game since February 25th after suffering a groin injury, but scored just six points. His return did limit Nene to just 13 minutes, but neither guy has much fantasy value.
The Spurs didn’t rest players as such, but Tony Parker played the most minutes of all the starters, topping out at 22 minutes. That allowed bigger minutes for Aron Baynes, who scored a career-high 18 points and while there may be a little more of this to come, the Spurs are still fighting for seeding, so it will likely be the exception rather than the rule.
Channing Frye, he of the $32 million, four-year deal, was a DNP-CD today and has been one of the busts of the season, which was not that unpredictable.
The Nikola Mirotic/Taj Gibson minute crunch appeared, limiting Niko to 23 minutes and six points, while Taj played 20 minutes for 12 points. As tough as it may be, dropping Mirotic may be thr right move, as it’s getting tougher to rely upon him.
Dwane Casey found it in his depths of knowledge to limit Jonas Valanciunas to 20 minutes and Amir Johnson to 20 minutes, giving Tyler Hansbrough and Patrick Patterson the bulk of the frontcourt minutes. Valanciunas still had 15 points with four rebounds and one block, and is there a more frustrating player/coach situation than what is happening with the big Lithuanian.
Justin Hamilton played 31 minutes in place of Gorgui Dieng and if Dieng remains out, which is highly possible, Hamilton is the guy to add over Adreian Payne. Hamilton had 13 points with two steals and one block and has a more diverse game.
Steven Adams rolled his ankle after playing 24 minutes, scoring seven points with two steals. If he misses Friday’s game, you can probably move on, despite his solid production.
Omri Casspi filled in for Rudy Gay, and scored 18 points with seven rebounds, and three steals, and will look to keep that role until early next week, which is plenty long enough for our fantasy purposes. He is worth a look when the Kings play again Friday.
Terrence Jones returned from his partially collapsed lung, started and blocked seven shots! He also scored 16 points with two three-pointers and seven rebounds and while he should’ve been dropped, if he hasn’t been claimed yet, you absolutely must make the add, especially with two more games this week.
For the second straight game, Pablo Prigioni outplayed Jason Terry, registering seven assists and four steals in 27 minutes. He’s now averaging 5.0 assists in his past four games, along with 2.5 steals and could be a different maker in those categories to close out the week. Josh Smith was reduced to 21 minutes with Jones’ return, scoring only two points with three blocks.
Joe Ingles made another start in place of Rodney Hood, who was out with a concussion, and hit four three-pointers for 12 points. He’s only a daily fantasy option really, given his bargain basement salary. Derrick Favors also returned from a two-game absence, scoring 19 points with seven rebounds with three blocks, but his presence obviously didn’t impact Rudy Gobert, who was huge again for 20 points, 12 rebounds and two blocks.
Carlos Boozer returned to the Lakers’ rotation, but played just 18 minutes and he shouldn’t be considered for adding, except in deep leagues.
BOX SCORE HIGHLIGHTS AND ODDITIES
Marvin Williams continues to provide nice back-end value with Cody Zeller out, scoring another 18 points with three three-pointers. He’s not a show-stopped, but out of position triples could be helpful as the season winds down. He’s averaging 12.5 points, 2.0 triples, 1.3 steals and 1.3 blocks n the last four games. That is definitely useable.
Ish Smith is excelling in his starting role, and scored 23 points with three assists and three steals. If he is available, he is a must-own player, especially with Isaiah Canaan going down with an ankle injury. Hollis Thompson drilled four three-pointers for 16 points, but had just 18 points combined in his previous three games. Streaky is an understatement,
Lord Elfrid Payton may have been dropped with Orlando’s two games last week, but if you have a look at his numbers, you’ll want to add him for the last two games of the week. Payton is averaging 15.0 points, 7.6 rebounds, 9.0 assists and 2.4 steals on 50 percent shooting from the field and 82 percent from the line in his last five games. That is not only good, but elite, top 20 type of numbers. Please make sure he is owned.
Langston Galloway is doing his best Alexey Shved impression, scoring 13 points with five rebounds, four assists and three steals and I now like him for standard leagues, given the dearth of talent everywhere in New York.
Rodney Stuckey dropped 16 points in 20 minutes off the bench, but he is not fully healthy yet and it’s going to be hard to rely upon him for the rest of the week, especially given his lack of production outside of scoring.
Kelly Olynyk showed a glimpse of his potential with 19 points with three three-pointers, but he is averaging 12.8 points, 1.3 three-pointers, 3.8 rebounds, 0.8 steals and 0.5 blocks in just 20 minutes in his last four games. If we extrapolated that to 36 minutes, it would be elite, but the Celtics just aren’t going to do that, severely limiting Olynyk’s usefulness.
Michael Carter-Williams bounced back from a couple of poor games with 21 points and 10 rebounds. His upside prevents me from dropping him for a streaming spot, but his production of late doesn’t scream must-hold. In saying that, I’m holding him.
Lou Williams and Greivis Vasquez both benefitted from Kyle Lowry‘s continued absence. It appears Lowry won’t be back Friday, so using Williams and Vasquez is still something you can do for at least one more game.
Same goes for Zach LaVine, who scored 22 points with seven rebounds and three assists with no Ricky Rubio or Gary Neal. He is must-own, but Rubio is still rumored to return at some point this week.
Monta Ellis was back from his calf issue, and was super-productive, scoring 26 points with five assists and four steals. Always check the waiver-wire for these guys who were injured at the start of the week, because they may have been cut in a moment of necessity and you may profit at the end of the week.
Anthony Morrow nailed six triples for 32 points and is now averaging 3.2 three-pointers in his last 15 games, hitting the deep ball at a clip of 55 percent. That is incredible. His field goal percentage of 55 percent and free throw percentage of 100 in that time frame is also awesome. His counting stats aren’t great aside from the threes, but for sneaky percentages along with the treys, Morrow has a solid role and outstanding production.
Enes Kanter scored a career-high 30 points with 16 rebounds, while Russell Westbrook registered his tenth triple-double of the season.
DeMarcus Cousins put up his second career triple-double, scoring 24 points with 21 rebounds, 10 assists, three steals and six blocks in what really is a crazy, crazy line. If you took the gamble of inserting Cousins into your lineup before you knew if he was playing, congratulations, you may have just won your league.
Not to be outdone, James Harden dropped a career-high 51 points with eight triples, eight rebounds six assists and three steals, while Trevor Ariza hit six triples.
- James Harden, G, HOU, 51 points
- Chris Paul, G, LAC, 41 points
- Anthony Morrow, F, OKC, 32 points
- DeMarcus Cousins, C, SAC, 21 rebounds
- Enes Kanter, F, OKC, 16 rebounds
- Marcin Gortat, C, WAS, 14 rebounds
- Chris Paul, G, LAC, 17 assists
- John Wall, G, WAS, 15 assists
- Evan Turner, F, BOS, 12 assists
- Dante Exum, G, UTA, 12 assists
- Chris Paul, G, LAC, 4 steals
- Monta Ellis, G, DAL, 4 steals
- Elfrid Payton, G, ORL, 4 steals
- Joe Johnson, G, BKN, 4 steals
- Pablo Prigioni, G, HOU, 4 steals
- Marcus Smart, G, BOS, 4 steals
- Terrence Jones, F, HOU, 7 blocks
- DeMarcus Cousins, C, SAC, 6 blocks
- Brook Lopez, C, BKN, 5 blocks
- James Harden, G, HOU, 8-9 3Pt
- Anthony Morrow, F, OKC, 6-9 3Pt
- Trevor Ariza, F, HOU, 6-14 3Pt
- Russell Westbrook, G, OKC, 44 minutes
- Andrew Wiggins, F, MIN, 44 minutes
- Jimmy Butler, F, CHI, 41 minutes