• How would Chris Paul fare in his return? Would the Thunder keep rolling? Could Houston respond after a terrible collapse less than 24 hours ago? These questions and more were answered on a full Friday slate. And while you’re here for the box score information, I’d be remiss not to go through at least some of the ailments affecting fantasy-relevant players across the league.

    Injury Rundown

    Danny Green and Kawhi Leonard are being listed as probable for Saturday. It’s good to see Kawhi starting to ramp things up though we’re not expecting him to hit full speed for another week or two. As for Green, his streakiness has always hurt his H2H appeal and he’s hitting a valley thanks to poor shooting and some groin problems. Hopefully he’ll turn things around, and he’s an easy top-100 value when things are going right even if they’re not all that exciting.

    Rudy Gay will miss at least two weeks with a heel problem. If you must know, it’s retrocalcaneal bursitis. He’ll be reevaluated in two weeks and was playing himself off standard league radars anyway. With minutes settling in the teens, Gay can be dropped for a higher upside option.

    Stephen Curry might return on Saturday. The direct quote from Steve Kerr is that he will “most likely” return to action, so look forward to that. Chef Curry will be on a minutes limit of some kind but he tends to cook up something nice whenever he’s out there, so don’t overthink this one. Omri Casspi might also return and that pair of Dubs seems very close to getting over their right ankle problems.

    The Nuggets are calling Malik Beasley and Juan Hernangomez questionable with an elbow and an illness, respectively. Nothing to see here as Denver pares down the rotation.

    Paul George sat out Friday’s game and is currently questionable for Sunday. He dealt with a calf injury that forced him to miss time earlier this year and admitted some forearm problems. Now it’s left knee soreness. While it seems like PG is racking up minor nicks and bumps, we’re considering his absences as precautionary more than anything until we hear otherwise. Alex Abrines will start in his place.

    Big men Brandan Wright and JaMychal Green are hoping to play on Saturday after going through Friday’s practice, so we’ll see what happens. Green has really underperformed this year despite great opportunity while Wright has been a deep league play for his infrequent stints on the court. It’s the same old story with him, but hopefully he can start to build some momentum in the new year. Chandler Parsons will pick up a rest day as well but he’ll suit up for the SEGABABA. The name outweighs the production at this point, unfortunately. More importantly, Mike Conley reportedly had an extensive post-practice session today. He’ll be gone for another week or so at minimum, but it’ll be good to see him back on the court when the time eventually comes.

    Damian Lillard is officially questionable for Saturday against the Hawks with his hamstring injury. Shabazz Napier has been balling in his absence and the Blazers probably don’t need Dame to deal with Atlanta on the second half of a back-to-back, but we’ll see how he feels pregame. Noah Vonleh and Meyers Leonard are probable but might not be in the rotation.

    Victor Oladipo, in the midst of a dynamite second-round campaign, is doubtful for Sunday after sitting out Friday. Pain, soreness and swelling in the right knee are his ailments and owners will be waiting with bated breath to hear about his reevaluation next week. Fire up your Lance Stephenson stock. If nothing else, he won’t be boring.

    The Heat won’t give any official timetable on Justise Winslow, James Johnson or Dion Waiters but all are expected to be out tomorrow. The current speculation is two weeks for Waiters but again, no word from the team. Winslow is past his original speculated timetable of one week, so we’ve got him as the closest to returning of the bunch. Johnson returned ahead of his original schedule but made it through eight minutes before re-aggravating his ankle, so they might take their time there. Unfortunately, Johnson is the only guy worth hanging onto. Tyler Johnson, Wayne Ellington, Kelly Olynyk et al are more interesting than the guys they’re replacing from a fantasy perspective.

    Jonathan Isaac (who still makes for an excellent stash) will not play on Saturday thanks to continued ankle problems. The steals and blocks are there and it’s not like anybody is blocking his path in Orlando at the moment. If he could ever shake the ankle problems we’d be in business here. Evan Fournier and Aaron Gordon are expected to suit up, at least. Both guys played in the last one but were feeling a little sore and didn’t take in a full practice on Friday. No surprise there, so look forward to having them in your lineups.

    And last, but never ever the least, comes the Sixers injury report. Joel Embiid will sit out on Saturday, so look for Richaun Holmes to get dusted off after his weird string of garbage-time only games. Hopefully Trevor Booker and Amir Johnson stay out of the way. Robert Covington is questionable after X-rays came back negative on his left middle finger. It’s not his shooting hand but we’ll see if he responds well to treatment in the run up to tip off. Justin Anderson is doubtful as he recovers from shin splints, but deep down you already knew that.

    Houston Rockets 103 @ Washington Wizards 121

    The Rockets were happy to welcome back Chris Paul in this one, even if his minutes were capped. His strained adductor seemed to be the least serious of the bunch that struck a few superstars in the past month or so. CP3 connected on just 3-of-11 from the floor but hit his cap at 25 minutes, posting eight points, six assists, two steals and two triples. His running mate, James Harden, was shockingly quiet with 20 points, four assists and a triple-one but somehow didn’t snag a board. He’ll be fine, but this was weird. Trevor Ariza also sort of stunk with seven points on 3-of-11 shooting, including a 1-of-9 mark from deep. He too will be fine. Gerald Green got 18 points with this one out of reach while Eric Gordon chipped in 16 off the bench in a very weird box score for the Rockets.

    Nene got some rest and Clint Capela was out, so Ryan Anderson slid down to center and P.J. Tucker drew a start. Some rough moments from Zhou Qi forced a halftime adjustment with Tarik Black started the second half, but you can think of this bunch as “Not Capela” and move on. To be fair, Black did go for 10 & 12 with two steals and a block, so there’s some deep league potential there when Houston is down its top two centers…

    Markieff Morris couldn’t take advantage of Mike Scott sitting this one out, shooting 1-for-7 and finishing with six points, nine rebounds and one assist in 27 minutes. We’ve cut him some slack given the rocky, injury-induced start, but eventually he’s going to have to start making good before fantasy owners’ attentions shift elsewhere. Marcin Gortat predictably took a backseat in this one, seeing just 19 minutes and going for four points and seven boards.

    On the plus side, Otto Porter knocked down seven triples on the way to 26 points, six boards, seven assists, two steals and a block so hopefully you tried to buy low when his shots weren’t dropping. John Wall went 7-of-10 and picked up 17 points, four assists, five steals and two triples while Bradley Beal went 9-of-21 for 21 points with three triples. Off the bench, it was Kelly Oubre who shot 9-of-18 to finish with 21 points, four boards, three triples and three assists in 26 minutes. He should probably be owned in 12-teamers, so take a look if he’s out there.

    Atlanta Hawks 98 @ Toronto Raptors 111

    Of the two teams in the building tonight, the Hawks were definitely one of them. Dennis Schroder stunk up the gym with a 6-of-20 shooting line and wound up with 14 points, five rebounds, nine assists and two steals. The efficiency will kill you but at least he salvaged something. Kent Bazemore was quiet with 8-6-3 and five turnovers while Ersan Ilasova logged 28 minutes but produced only six points and eight boards. The Hawks were kept at arm’s length for much of the night and there were only a few players who delivered for fantasy owners.

    Chief among them was Taurean Waller-Prince, who set a new career-high with 30 points on 12-of-16 shooting. Prince also tied a career-high with five 3-pointers and added 10 rebounds, an assist and two blocks. He’s going to be a top-60 player this season, so hopefully you were with us for Draft Guide season. We tried to warn you. Marco Belinelli got hot and hit a few circus jumpers in garbage time to finish with 14 points while John Collins collected 11 points, eight rebounds and four blocks in just 21 minutes. Please, let the kid start already.

    The Raptors mixed up the starting five in this one thanks to a one-game suspension for Serge Ibaka. He and a staffer got into it a bit after the team’s loss to OKC so don’t expect him to miss any more time. C.J. Miles drew the start and isn’t shy about getting his shots up, going 3-for-8 in 18 minutes with nine points, three triples, two steals and a block. C.J.’s shots are just part of the bargain with Toronto focusing on boosting their 3-point output, and his ultra green light makes him a worthwhile 3-point streamer and a decent low-end add if his minutes ever get up into the mid-twenties consistently.

    Bebe come back! Lucas Nogueira made his return from a calf injury and did his usual thing with six points, three boards and two blocks in seven minutes of work. One day he’ll get the minutes to cruise to top-100 numbers, but that probably won’t come any time soon. Jakob Poeltl stands in his way and went for 10 rebounds and three swats in 19 minutes of his own. Delon Wright also had a solid game off the bench, picking up 13 points, seven rebounds, two assists, two steals, a block and a triple in 29 minutes while the usual suspects of DeMar DeRozan (25 points, five dimes, two triples and two blocks) and Kyle Lowry (15-5-5 with two longballs) got theirs as well. Jonas Valanciunas had a solid evening with 13 & 11, a steal, two blocks and a 3-pointer but will be a late round guy until he pushes towards 30 minutes. That’s a nice way of saying that he’s just a late round guy.

    Dallas Mavericks 128 @ New Orleans Pelicans 120

    A bird! A plane! A good game from Dennis Smith Jr.! Even better, Smith collected his first career triple-double with 21 points, 10 rebounds, 10 assists, five 3-pointers and a steal. DSJ has been well outside the top-200 on the season but his upside was on full display tonight. An 8-for-12 game won’t make up for his full season of woeful shooting but hopefully it’s a sign of things to come. Wesley Matthews also got hot and knocked down 7-of-11 here, finishing with 18 points, four threes and two steals. Those are his bread and butter categories and he looks like his old middle-round self when the shots are going in. This game was pretty defense-optional, and it allowed Dwight Powell (15 points, 4-of-4 from the floor and 7-of-7 from the line), Devin Harris (17 points, five triples) and J.J. Barea (14 points, nine dimes) to post some worthwhile lines in their own right. Barea and Powell are worth rolling with in deep leagues while Harris can be watched from the wire.

    The fact that Dallas got so many contributions from up and down the roster meant that Dirk Nowitzki (13 points, 12 rebounds) and Harrison Barnes could pump the brakes a bit. Barnes in particular was disappointing with 13 points, five rebounds and a 6-of-15 shooting line. He’s pretty steady in the top-80 but there’s very little margin for error with him. He either gets his points or he doesn’t.

    Rajon Rondo won’t be getting 25 assists in a game any time soon, and really cooled down with six points, eight assists and three steals tonight. It’s disappointing considering his previous heights but this is a pretty solid outing from Rondo. Owners should be happy if they get this much each night. The heavy lifting, as expected, was done by the dynamic duo of Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins. Davis led the way with 33 points, five rebounds, two assists, two steals and a triple to go with 12-of-22 shooting but it was Boogie who paid the bills for fantasy owners with 32 points and a monster line. He couldn’t lead the team in scoring but nobody is complaining about 20 rebounds, eight assists, two steals, five blocks, three triples and 11-of-24 from the field. What a huge game.

    Jrue Holiday was overshadowed a bit but still kept up his early-middle round work with 23 points and three triples. People might’ve been scared off during draft season given his performance down the stretch last year but it’s been a strong season out of Holiday. He should wind up turning a little profit when it’s all said and done.

    Indiana Pacers 107 @ Chicago Bulls 119

    The Pacers seem to be slipping of late, and the lack of Victor Oladipo in this one didn’t help matters. Of course, it also doesn’t help that Myles Turner has been scuffling either. The big man saw just 25 minutes in this one, posting 11 points, three boards, one steal and two blocks while going 4-of-10 from the field and 3-of-6 from the line. It’s rare that you get a true buy low opportunity on a top-30 stud, but this is it. Lance Stephenson went for 18-9-3 with two triples in a start and is a fine low-end play if Oladipo misses serious time. The stat set isn’t great but he’s going to get his numbers. Bojan Bogdanovic struggled with 2-of-10 from the field, and his streaks just just come with the territory.

    Domantas Sabonis saw 28 minutes off the bench and was moderately productive with 14 points, nine boards and two blocks while Thaddeus Young went for a solid 10-7-4 with three steals. He’s one of the quieter middle-round players in the league, and hopefully the Pacers decide to keep him through the trade deadline. While the Pacers as a whole threw up a dud, Darren Collison had a wonderful line with 12-of-16 shooting, collecting 30 points, three rebounds, six assists, three steals, a block and four triples. He’s been a steady point guard pretty much all season despite some dips in the recent weeks, so just make sure that his owner values him properly. Feel free to swoop in if that isn’t the case.

    Kris Dunn was a very late scratch thanks to knee tendinitis, allowing Jerian Grant to draw the start. It seems like the point guards always produce on the suddenly-competent Bulls, as Grant hit three triples and paid off for any dice-rolling owners out there with 11 points, seven rebounds, 12 assists and a steal. This seems like a one-night deal considering Grant’s game logs, so owners in deep leagues don’t need to drop everything to make a move here. Justin Holiday also scored 11 but added a triple, a steal and three blocks. He’ll maintain standard league value even when Zach LaVine returns so don’t be too hasty with a drop there.

    The story in Chicago these days, however, is the three-headed monster at power forward. Lauri Markkanen led the dance tonight with 32 points, seven rebounds and five threes while shooting 11-of-17 in just 28 minutes. Nikola Mirotic continued his torrid pace with 28 points, four rebounds, four assists, two steals and a whopping eight 3-pointers on 10-of-20 shooting. He screams sell high, but you’re more than welcome to hang tight for a while longer. Mirotic should have no issues returning top-75 value. The trade possibilities loom in the background but he’s living right at the moment. Even Bobby Portis maintained some value in this one, grabbing 12-7-3 in 16 minutes. The two Europeans are the standard league guys but Portis hasn’t become a complete afterthought.

    Brooklyn Nets 111 @ Miami Heat 87

    The Nets rolled into Miami and just embarrassed the Heat. Had the Heat not produced a 27-16 fourth quarter, this would’ve been much uglier. Brooklyn had seven guys in double-figures tonight with Joe Harris‘ 21 leading the way. It’s tough to take too much from this garbage time contest, but at least he kept up his 3-point specialist pace with four deep balls. Rondae Hollis-Jefferson shot 8-of-9 in his 23 minutes to score 18 points while adding eight rebounds and an assist. Caris LeVert was questionable coming into this one with a hip pointer but wound up double-doubling with 12 points, five rebounds and 11 dimes. Make sure he’s owned, as he could soon be coming for the starting spot of Allen Crabbe (six points, two steals, 2-for-8 tonight). Spencer Dinwiddie wasn’t all that special but still chipped in across the board with 11 points, six dimes, two steals, a block and a 3-pointer.

    At center, Tyler Zeller started and pitched in 11 points, seven rebounds, two blocks and a rare 3-pointer but Jarrett Allen remains the guy to monitor in fantasy circles. The rookie saw 20 minutes as the two continue their even timeshare and produced 12 points, nine boards and a block. He’s a great stash for the second half of the year. As for Jahlil Okafor? DNP-CD. Good luck there.

    The Heat flat out stunk tonight, shooting .337 from the field as a team. Goran Dragic‘s struggles continued with a 3-for-12 performance, and his 11 points, four rebounds, five assists and two steals aren’t enough to make up for the inefficiency. He’s still a buy low guy but he’s running out of time to make good on his ADP. Tyler Johnson also laid some bricks with a 4-of-15 outing, scoring 11 points with five rebounds and a triple. Stay the course here. He’ll continue to start and is no stranger to top-100 output. Miami’s other hot two guard Wayne Ellington, went ice cold and finished 2-for-10 with no triples in 28 minutes. A dud was coming eventually, but nobody expected it to come against the Nets. Kelly Olynyk didn’t help shooting matters with a 1-for-7 line, though he was still worth using thanks to seven boards, two assists, a steal and a block. He can give you everything on every night, though it’s worth watching his workload. KO was at 23 minutes tonight.

    As for the good stuff, Josh Richardson stayed hot with 19 points on 7-of-12 shooting but was curiously quiet elsewhere, failing to make an impact with cash counters beyond a single steal. He’s a sell high player, and owners who stuck with him through the early portion of the season surely remember how dreadful the full experience has been. J-Rich can no doubt stick as a standard league asset but this could be his peak for the season. Hassan Whiteside needed only 20 minutes to tally 17 points, eight rebounds, two steals and a block and had no trouble toying with Brooklyn’s thin front line. He’s starting to get back to full speed, so hopefully the injury nightmare is over for his owners.

    Milwaukee Bucks 97 @ Oklahoma City Thunder 95

    The Bucks got back on track despite a down game from their point guard duo, Eric Bledsoe and Malcolm Brogdon. Bledsoe battled foul trouble in this one and wound up posting eight points, five rebounds, two assists and a steal on 4-of-13 shooting. It was his first real clunker since joining the Bucks so we’ll cut him some slack, as he’s been his standard early-round self since the trade. Brogdon saw 21 minutes off the bench and produced seven points, two rebounds, three assists and three steals. It’s concerning that Matthew Dellavedova outplayed him with 25 minutes. Delly went scoreless and dropped nine dimes but isn’t worth your time in fantasy. Hopefully this was a one-time, defense-first matchup thing. That still would’ve been wrong and dumb, but it’s on the good end of the Jason Kidd does Wrong and Dumb Things spectrum.

    Khris Middleton was his steady self with 20 points, six boards, three assists, three triples, a steal and a block while Giannis Antetokounmpo was only mildly freakish with 23 points, 12 rebounds, six dimes, a steal and a block on 10-of-16 shooting. The X-factor in this one was John Henson, who collected 18 points, six rebounds and four blocks. There have been rumors that Milwaukee wants to upgrade the center spot and Henson had seen his blocks dry up of late, but he made a nice statement tonight. Be sure to give him a look if he was dropped.

    The Thunder came up short with Paul George on the sidelines and it didn’t help that his replacement, Alex Abrines, went scoreless in only 10 minutes. He’s usually good for a couple threes but you can typically do better if you need more than a simple stream. Steven Adams was off in this one, shooting just 2-of-7 and finishing with six points, seven rebounds, a steal and a block. Funaki has been a top-50 guy this year so he can take a night off like this every once in awhile. No need to sell high, either. Carmelo Anthony was neither here nor there with 12 points, six rebounds and a triple and his hot start is a distant memory. Hopefully you sold high.

    As expected, the Thunder leaned heavily on the heroics of Russell Westbrook. He shot 16-of-34 from the field and just missed a triple-double with 40 points, 14 rebounds, nine assists and a steal. Westbrook can easily torch your percentages on his big scoring nights but the only sticking point here was his 6-of-9 from the charity stripe. He’ll probably end up setting a new career-low there this year but he should be able to make some minor improvements there.

    Phoenix Suns 111 @ Sacramento Kings 101

    The Suns rolled into Sacramento and left with a win in large part because of T.J. Warren‘s 26 & 10. His line was typically hollow otherwise, but you’ll take 26 points on 12-of-18 from the floor whenever you can get it. Warren is a solid top-100 asset and a huge boost in points, as expected. Marquese Chriss also stirred and seems to be placing his good games closer together these days. Tonight he was able to play 28 minutes and hit 5-of-6 from the field en route to 14 points, eight rebounds, four assists, three 3-pointers, a steal and a block. We know what he’s capable of so it might be time to pluck him off the waiver wire. It’s going to be better to be too early than too late on this one. Devin Booker, like Warren, netted 26 points but also needed 25 shots to get the job done. 9-of-25 is hard to stomach but that’s part of the deal if you drafted Booker, and you have to be happy with his overall increase in efficiency and most of the counting stats.

    Elsewhere on the roster, Tyson Chandler pulled down 11 boards in 30 minutes, Alex Len delivered six boards and two blocks in 18 minutes and Greg Monroe picked up another DNP. With Moose the likeliest candidate to sit on most nights, he’s been surpassed by Len in the fantasy pecking order. At point guard, Tyler Ulis saw 24 minutes but was relatively quiet with five points, four assists and a triple while Isaiah Canaan went 3-for-5 in 19 minutes with nine points, six assists, a steal and a triple. Canaan has been playing better of late but Ulis is still the long-term play. In a situation that deep leaguers might be interested in, Dragan Bender played 20 minutes to Josh Jackson‘s 10. Bender’s probably the preferred play there, though neither will get enough minutes to really make a major impact.

    The Kings switched up their starting five in this one, rolling with Skal Labissiere and Frank Mason over Willie Cauley-Stein and Buddy Hield. Labissiere needed only 16 minutes to collect 12 points, four boards and an assist. He only saw that much time because the Kings are the Kings and need to learn things the hard way. He’s still just a stash, unfortunately. Mason went for 7-4-5 and two steals and is a solid, if uninspiring, deep league guard play. Hield scored 12 off the bench while Cauley-Stein dropped 11 & 9 with two steals in 31 minutes. Make sure he’s not on any waiver wires.

    Zach Randolph did his usual business with an empty 14 points while fellow veteran George Hill was brutal, going 2-for-11 from the field to finish with 12 points, one 3-pointer, three rebounds and one assist in 30 minutes. He should still be good for top-120 numbers but it’s been a pretty rough year for Hill to this point. Bogdan Bogdanovic cracked 30 minutes if you’re looking for a positive, and he was able to deliver 13 points, two rebounds, three assists, two triples and a block while going 5-of-10 from the floor. He’s going to be a standard league pickup if the minutes stay there, so keep your fingers crossed.

    Charlotte Hornets 111 @ Golden State Warriors 100

    The Hornets stole a win at Oracle behind a season-high 29 from Dwight Howard. The big man did major damage in 40 minutes, pulling down 13 rebounds, dropping seven dimes and snatching two steals while going 10-of-15 from the field and 9-of-12 from the line. While he can’t really be used reasonably if you aren’t punting free throws, this was a great night to roll with Dwight. Kemba Walker‘s 5-of-16 wasn’t ideal but he managed to finish with a really nice statline of 16 points, five boards, five assists, three steals, two blocks and three triples. Nicolas Batum also turned out to be pretty handy in this one, going for 15-4-6 with two triples and a steal. There’s still some buy low opportunity here, especially if you’re not stressing about his elbow.

    Marvin Williams went scoreless in 23 minutes while Michael Kidd-Gilchrist didn’t pick up any defensive stats, but the Charlotte bench gave owners a little something. Jeremy Lamb wasn’t fazed by Batum’s good night, tallying 11 points, six boards, a steal and two blocks. We told you he was a hold even when the Hornets got healthy. Frank Kaminsky seemed to enjoy the matchup as well, netting 14 points with six rebounds, three assists, two steals, one block and one 3-pointer. The Tank has some attraction as a big who can knock down threes and he could be looking at enough opportunity to crack the top-150. Either way, he was a valuable part of a big upset tonight.

    As for the Dubs, there wasn’t much outside the norms. Kevin Durant was a subpar 8-of-19 but still finished with 27 points and four triples (but no blocks) while Klay Thompson went for 24 on three treys of his own. Draymond Green had the best fantasy night with eight points, 11 rebounds, 16 assists and three blocks, and there aren’t many guys around who can double-double without points on a regular basis. He’s a surefire second round play every single year, and he’s always safe to pair with an underrated scoring specialist who can be had a little cheaper. Someone like, say, T.J. Warren. Anyway…

    Zaza Pachulia did nothing in a start at center and saw 14 minutes to Jordan Bell‘s 20. Bell finished with eight points, five rebounds, two assists, two steals and a block. He’ll start by the end of the season. Talent always wins out and the Warriors are too smart to let this gimme go.

    LA Clippers 121 @ Los Angeles Lakers 106

    The big story here was the return of Blake Griffin, and although he was supposed to be on some sort of workload restriction he managed to play 32 minutes. With 24-6-6, it’s safe to declare that Blake is back and ready to roll. The Lakers will let you get away with more than most opponents, but Griffin needs to be activated ASAP. DeAndre Jordan double-doubled with 12 & 16 and two blocks while Lou Williams poured in 23 off the bench on the back of 13-for-15 from the charity stripe.

    As for the lesser heralded names, Austin Rivers scored 13 points before leaving with a heel injury. An absence there would open up more times for Williams’ Lou and C.J., as well as rookie Jawun Evans. Milos Teodosic collected 11 points, five rebounds, seven dimes, a steal and two triples and is really starting to pick up the pace. Top-100 numbers from here on out seems like a safe bet. Montrezl Harrell delivered another nice line in limited minutes, picking up 15 points, nine boards and two blocks on 7-of-9 shooting in only 16 minutes. He shreds opposing benches and hopefully he gets a more substantial role for the rest of the season.

    Kyle Kuzma was able to suit up for the Lakers despite some quad discomfort in recent days, and the fact that he played 37 minutes bodes well going forward. His 13 points on 6-of-15 shooting is less encouraging, but that’s an easy second fiddle compared to his health. Keep rolling with the down-ballot ROY contender. Julius Randle was plugged into the starting five and responded with 18 points, seven rebounds, two assists, a steal and a block in 29 minutes. His future with the organization remains cloudy but there’s little doubt that Randle can pump out solid middle-round numbers when he’s let off the leash a bit. And while we’re here, Larry Nance Jr. rounded out the power forward triumvirate with a solid 6-of-7 from the field for 16 points, four rebounds, four assists, two steals and a block. He’s always been a sneaky late-round play and should probably be picked up despite some valid playing time concerns. To this point it’s been Randle whose minutes get sliced, so stick with Nance on the chance that that trend continues.

    Brandon Ingram scored 18 with a steal and a block and led the team with 20 shots. There are still holes for him to patch up in his game but he’s certainly played his way into the standard league picture after a slow start. He’s for sure part of L.A.’s bright young core. Rookie Josh Hart started at point guard but scored only two points, and as expected it was Jordan Clarkson who led the way in the backcourt. In 35 minutes, Clarkson went 9-of-15 with two triples to finish with 20 points, five rebounds and eight assists. He shouldn’t be on any waiver wires now that he’s got starter’s minutes.

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