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.
March 27, 2020, 8:36 pmKillian HayesSG, International
Killian Hayes, a highly touted 18-year old point guard who has played three years professionally in France and Germany, has declared for the 2020 NBA draft after submitting the paperwork to the NBA league office.
Measuring in at 6-foot-5 and 215 pounds, Hayes has been on scouts' radars for quite some time after riding some very impressive YouTube highlight videos to prospect relevancy. In his most recent season, with ratiopharm Ulm in Germany, Hayes averaged 12.8 PTS, 6.2 AST, 2.3 REB and 1.5 STL while seeing his NBA draft stock rise as a result. He is a very talented shooter and it is seemingly more and more likely that Hayes will see his name called in the lottery when draft night arrives.
March 27, 2020, 8:24 pmPatrick WilliamsSF, College
Patrick Williams, a 6-foot-8, 225-pound small forward out of Florida State, has declared for the 2020 NBA draft after a shortened freshman season off the bench, averaging 9.2 PTS, 4.0 REB and 1.0 AST while not starting a single game for a deep Seminoles squad.
The intriguing aspect of Williams' draft aspirations lies in his dimensions; particularly his 7-foot wingspan. He had modest numbers but that can largely be attributed to how deep their rotation was in 2019-20, similar to fellow 'Nole Devin Vassell, who also declared for the draft recently. Williams has incredible athleticism and has made himself into an intriguing prospect who could find himself landing in the first round if his draft stock maintains momentum.
Source: Patrick Williams on Twitter
March 27, 2020, 12:14 pmRudy GobertC, Utah Jazz
The Utah Department of Health has cleared both Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell, meaning they no longer pose a risk of infection to others.
Both Gobert and Mitchell tested positive for COVID-19, and although Gobert mentioned that he briefly lost his senses of taste and smell, the duo seems to be fully recovered. This is great news as we wait for word on when or if the NBA season will be able to continue.
Source: Tim Bontemps on Twitter
March 26, 2020, 4:11 pmReggie BullockSG-SF, New York Knicks
Reggie Bullock will likely return to the Knicks for another season, according to Marc Berman of the New York Post.
If the Knicks chose not to bring back Bullock for next year, the team would suffer a $1M cap hit. That means that bringing him back for another season will only have a cap hit of $3.2M. That amount is only 2 percent of the projected salary cap for next season. The Knicks appear to be focused on creating cap flexibility for future years in the hopes that they can land some big-name free agents. Continue to monitor this situation as it develops but it appears likely that Bullock will be in a Knicks uniform for at least one more season.
Source: The New York Post
March 26, 2020, 3:57 pmDamyean DotsonSG, New York Knicks
According to Marc Berman of the New York Post, Damyean Dotson's time with the Knicks could come to an end after this season and the Jazz, Bucks and Warriors are among the teams that are expected to have interest in signing Dotson for the 2020-21 campaign.
Dotson saw his role with the Knicks evaporate towards the end of the season as he received a DNP-CD for eight of the Knicks' final nine contests. Interim head coach, Mike Miller, chose to play veterans Wayne Ellington and Reggie Bullock over the 25-year-old that they drafted in the second round of the 2017 draft. Dotson will look to land in a situation that will give him a more consistent role as a three-and-D wing as he enters his fourth season in the association.
Source: The New York Post
March 25, 2020, 11:12 pmMalik FittsSF, College
Malik Fitts announced on Twitter that he is declaring for the 2020 NBA Draft.
Fitts was the second leading scorer for a Saint Marys' team that was top-10 in offensive efficiency. He averaged 16.5 points, 7.1 rebounds and 1.4 steals while shooting .472 from the field and .408 from beyond the arc. Fitts is an under-the-radar draft prospect who will likely be a second-round pick at best. He is likely to have a limited role if he makes an NBA roster next season, but his 3-point efficiency and steals are two fantasy skills that translate well from college to the pros. He could be a threes and steals specialist if he gets minutes in the upper-20s.
Source: Malik Fitts on Twitter
March 25, 2020, 9:11 pmJae CrowderPF, Miami Heat
Jae Crowder said that Miami "felt like home" and he always wanted to play for the Heat.
Crowder is an unrestricted free agent this offseason and he is making it clear that he would prefer to remain in a Heat uniform next season. Crowder has played 28.7 minutes per game as a member of the Heat and has posted top-80 value during that stretch. Despite his great play so far in Miami he will likely fall into a more reduced role next season if he were to return. Crowder's best outcome for his fantasy value would be to sign with a rebuilding team where he can play big minutes as a veteran, similar to his role in Memphis this season.
Source: Anthony Chiang on Twitter
March 25, 2020, 6:37 pmChristian WoodPF, Detroit Pistons
Christian Wood has fully recovered from the coronavirus, according to James Edwards III.
Wood only showed the mildest of symptoms prior to the NBA season being suspended two weeks ago. The NBA has chosen to suspend play in the hopes that the virus will not spread as quickly. It is still unclear when the NBA will resume or if they will even play out the rest of the regular season. However, it is a good sign to see people recovering from the virus and the hope is that we stop seeing players who contract the illness.
Source: James Edwards III on Twitter
March 25, 2020, 3:54 pmJohn WallPG, Washington Wizards
Candace Buckner of the Washington Post reported that John Wall (left Achilles) will not return for the remainder of the 2019-20 season despite the hiatus.
Wall has missed all of the 2019-20 season so far and was only able to play in 73 games over the prior two seasons due to a variety of injuries. The Wizards' GM, Tommy Sheppard, told Buckner in an interview regarding Wall's availability going forward, “We’re very anxious to see John Wall in uniform next year. I don’t think any of this changes that.” We'll have to wait until next season to see Wall return to the court even when/if the NBA season resumes later on this calendar year.
Source: The Washington Post
March 24, 2020, 11:37 pmKenyon Martin Jr.PF, College
Kenyon Martin Jr., forward from IMG Academy, has declared for the 2020 NBA Draft.
You guessed it, Kenyon Martin Jr. is the son of 2000 NBA Draft first pick Kenyon Martin Sr. He is eligible for draft after a year at IMG since he graduated from Sierra Canyon High School a year ago. Martin had committed to Vanderbilt last May before heading to IMG Academy. This year's draft order looks to be more unpredictable than most, so based on Martin's athleticism and pedigree, he has a shot to make some noise on draft night.
Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter