March 9, 2020, 11:49 pm
With a loaded Sunday on the backburner, we have a rare three-game slate to recap on Monday. The Bucks decided to leave us with five legitimate teams to analyze as the entire starting unit got the night off against the Nuggets, the Hawks-Hornets game tried to make up for that no-show with a double-overtime affair that went the Hawks way, and the Raptors overcame the injuries, as they always seem to do, in order to defeat the Jazz. Despite the paltry slate, we have plenty of roster dynamics to decipher, and keeping up with the trends is crucial to navigating the weeks ahead.
Add(s) of the Night
Cam Reddish, PG/SG/SF, Atlanta Hawks – 22 points, three 3-pointers, seven rebounds, two assists, one steal, one turnover, 8-of-14 FG, 3-of-4 FT
Reddish did not miss any games after having to depart early from Saturday’s contest with lower-leg cramping. Reddish has transformed into a well-rounded scorer for the Hawks, and appears to have adapted to the NBA style of play. It’s a complete 180 from where he found himself earlier this season, but the Hawks are giving him plenty of run, and he’s looking like a productive scorer with solid 3-pointers and steals to offer to round out his game. Bad teams are often a fantasy goldmine to close out the season, and the Hawks most certainly qualify for that status.
Cody Martin, SF, Charlotte Hornets – 11 points, one 3-pointer, four rebounds, five assists, zero turnovers, 3-of-8 FG, 4-of-4 FT
It’s not popping off your device but this line is good enough for a stream, and Martin has been a steady source of assists of late for the Hornets while picking up about 30 minutes per game. The steal rate is respectable and if Martin begins to take on a larger offensive role he would quickly leap into the standard league conversation. For now, he’s just a good dimes pickup with three more games on tap for this week, but he’s worth keeping on your watch list in case the Hornets want to ease up on Terry Rozier or Devonte’ Graham.
We’re not saying that you have to drop any of these guys, only that you should at least consider it depending who’s on your waiver wire. Your mileage may vary based on league size and team build, but for the most part we’ll try to cut dead weight in the 12-team range.
When you live and die by the jump shot your fantasy value is on a knife’s edge, and it appears that Jordan Clarkson has taken the plunge. He had a nice run of late-round value for the Jazz, but the .486 field goal percentage is unsustainable compared to his remarkably consistent .447 career mark. That bump is the only way Clarkson could continue averaging nearly 16 points for the Jazz, but now Mike Conley is beginning to settle in and Joe Ingles is finding a home running the second unit. The Jazz don’t need Clarkson’s offense on a nightly basis and it’d be wise to follow their lead.
We didn’t even see the Spaniard take the floor for the Raptors on Monday, but this is a trusty indicator of how seriously you should be taking his comeback these last 20 games or so. Gasol is not playing back-to-backs at this point, and the Raptors still have a couple more of these sets on the schedule. They don’t play again until Saturday during this two-game week, Gasol only logged 16 minutes on Sunday, and the Raptors are healthy enough that they won’t rely upon him often to put in major minutes. He’s really just a break in case of an emergency when Joel Embiid or Nikola Jokic are coming to town. There is no reason that Gasol should be owned in over 60 percent of Yahoo leagues.
Norman Powell (left ankle sprain) collided with OG Anunoby at the beginning of the Raptors-Jazz contest on Monday. Powell was unable to return to the game, but Anunoby just lost a contact in the incident’s aftermath.
Marc Gasol sat out on Monday as the Raptors proceed cautiously with his return from left hamstring tightness. Fred VanVleet also continued to heal from left shoulder soreness, missing his sixth straight game. The Raptors don’t play till Saturday so let’s hope FVV is finally back for that one.
Giannis Antentokounmpo (joint capsule sprain), Eric Bledsoe (right knee effusion), George Hill (bruised right adductor) all missed Monday’s matchup vs. the Nuggets. Khris Middleton (rest) and Brook Lopez (rest) also sat out this game and have no reason to not play on Thursday. They all have the chance to return Thursday against the Celtics.
LaMarcus Aldridge is continuing to nurse his right shoulder strain that his him doubtful for Tuesday. Lonnie Walker is questionable with a left shin contusion for this one as well. Trey Lyles continues to be a standard league play as long as Aldridge is out, and Walker is a promising stream whenever he plays while DeJounte Murray remains out indefinitely due to a calf injury he suffered on Sunday against the Cavs. Derrick White is now a must-add if he’s still available in your league.
LeBron James (sore left groin) is questionable for Tuesday and Anthony Davis (sore left elbow) is probable to face the Nets. It’s possible LBJ gets a breather after the Lakers picked up a pair of impressive victories over the Clippers and Bucks. Davis should be fine.
Luka Doncic (right wrist sprain) is questionable for Tuesday, but he looked great on Sunday, and it seems reasonable to hope that he is out there for this one as well.
Deandre Ayton is questionable to return from his left ankle sprain on Tuesday. His insertion into the lineup would cripple Aron Baynes’ explosion as his replacement. Cameron Johnson (illness) will miss the next two weeks with mononucleosis and should be dropped everywhere. The Suns only have two games this week and you are probably going to have to cut Baynes when you account for the likelihood of Ayton’s return.
Victor Oladipo is questionable with a sore right knee for Tuesday, but he has been able to play through this label during his past two outings. His arrow is pointing up with Malcolm Brogdon out of the way.
Seth Curry will remain out with a sprained left ankle on Tuesday. Dorian-Finney Smith is questionable with his hip injury, and if he is also out that will give big minutes to Justin Jackson and Courtney Lee.
Eric Gordon (right knee soreness) and Ben McLemore (gastroenteritis) are both questionable for Tuesday to face the Wolves. Neither has carved out a steady enough role to be standard league options.
Draymond Green (left knee soreness) is out and Stephen Curry (illness) is questionable to play against the Clippers on Tuesday. This will be Green’s sixth straight missed game and if you can’t wait make the cut. Curry’s situation is more fluid and he is going to deliver elite value whenever he plays.
Zach LaVine (left quad strain) will miss Tuesday’s game vs. the Cavs, continuing to give Coby White tons of opportunity as he is about to receive his first start.
Garrett Temple (left ankle sprain) will sit against the Lakers on Tuesday.
Darius Garland will be out again on Tuesday with a left groin strain. Kevin Porter Jr. is still out with a concussion and that means Matthew Dellavedova is a must-start player who should deliver a hefty assist total. Tristan Thompson (eye) is also missing this game and is more of a streamer when healthy and active.
Jae Crowder is projected to return from his concussion on Wednesday. He has been a top-75 player for the Heat, which could be difficult to keep up upon his return, but he is still a worthy 12-team addition.
Jusuf Nurkić will practice in the G League this week as he is targeting a debut on Sunday for his comeback from a left leg compound fracture. It will be great to see Nurkic back on the floor, but the ramp-up will be slow, making Nurkić a tough play in standard leagues right now.
Jaren Jackson Jr. (left knee soreness) and Justise Winslow (back soreness) are both about a week away from playing. Brandon Clarke (right quad) is progressing well and is expected to play again this season. The Grizzlies rotation will shift dramatically when they all return, Gorgui Dieng would take a major hit, and Kyle Anderson and Josh Jackson would be losers as well.
He lost a few friends along the way, but it appears Derrick White has finally returned to his good place in San Antonio. On Friday, White shockingly received a start alongside Dejounte Murray, and while the Spurs lost 120-139 to the Nets, White had a nice showing with 19 points (6-of-12 FG) (5-of-5 FT), two 3-pointers, two rebounds, two assists, three blocks and one steal over 27 minutes. In his second start next to Murray on Sunday, White got by with 17 points (4-of-7 FG) (8-of-9 FT), one 3-pointer, three assists, and a steal while picking up five fouls.
Those were solid outings for White that already indicate he can put up standard league value in the starting unit. That was when he was a combo guard for the Spurs, but with the news that Dejounte Murray will be day-to-day with a right calf strain, with no timetable for a return, White is about to take over point guard responsibilities for the Spurs. Typically, I’d be worried that Gregg Popovich is going to play musical chairs with Patty Mills and give Bryn Forbes an expanded role, but as he was already relenting on playing White alongside Murray, it would appear he finally is getting the opportunity to emerge like he did last season as a reliable top-100 asset in standard leagues. As long as LaMarcus Aldridge is out, and the Spurs continue to fall out of the playoff picture, the youngsters should get the keys to the kingdom as the focus shifts away from Aldridge and DeMar DeRozan.
While Murray is day-to-day, he could easily miss more than a week of action. All in all, this could be the break that White needs to start displaying the upside he shined with throughout his sophomore campaign. He has the ability to put up 1-1-1 production in 3-pointers, steals and blocks, while also chipping in solid percentages and filling out the rest of the boxscore. This could very well be the opportunity White needs to help Gregg Popovich rediscover the good place that the Spurs have been seeking throughout this slog of a season.
Wishing you all the best of luck as we all seek our Derrick White sweet spot to fight our way into and through the fantasy playoffs, or capture those Roto titles. We’ll continue our journey to that good place next Monday.