• Welcome to This Week Tonight! We’ve got some games played to run down, pickups to make, guys to keep an eye on and injuries leading into this week. Without further adieu:

    4 Games: ATL, BOS, CHA, DET, LAC, LAL, MEM, MIA, MIN, NYK, ORL, PHI, SAC, TOR, UTA

    3 Games: BKN, CHI, CLE, DAL, DEN, GSW, HOU, MIL, NOR, OKC, SAS, WAS

    2 Games: IND, PHO, POR

    It’s a weird week for a few teams and head-to-head players with two game teams this week are going to suffer.

    Pickups for this week:

    Sergio Rodriguez – I cut him after Jerryd Bayless was back for two games and was forced to pick him back up after Bayless re-aggravated his wrist injury. Bayless is one of the most injury prone players in the league over the last couple of seasons so if you need a temporary boost run Rodriguez back out there for Philly’s four game week. He posted 12 points, seven assists, two steals and two 3-pointers on Sunday in 28 minutes.

    D.J. Augustin – He started over Elfrid Payton on Sunday and that could be a trend for the foreseeable future. Augustin logged 25 minutes, up from his season average of 19, and he produced a decent low end line. Augustin should be a nice temporary boost in scoring and point guard stats, but it likely won’t last long.

    Glenn Robinson III – It’s hard to endorse him on a short two game week but he’s played well with Paul George out of the lineup and the Pacers don’t play until Wednesday, so pick him up there and ride him until his game Sunday and you probably won’t have to burn roster space for more than a few days.

    Frank Kaminsky – He’s been good offensively and the hate has always gone too far on a player that’s always had some talent on offense. He’s playing heavy minutes with Marvin Williams out at least another week and should be owned in all leagues.

    Trade Speculation:

    It’s getting to be that time as the the prohibition against trading players on new contracts is coming to an end on December 15th. I’d recommend picking up or sending offers for these guys ahead of that in order to get the jump on your league if you have the available roster space or are in a comfortable position thus far. Not all trade action happens on the deadline and that’s important to remember.

    Willie Cauley-Stein – There’s always going to be speculation about a DeMarcus Cousins trade and the rumor is rival general managers expect the Kings to move Cousins now if they move him at all. It’s also possible Kosta Koufos or WCS himself gets traded. Cauley-Stein is a reasonable Marcin Gortat facsimile if he can get solid minutes.

    Omri Casspi – He hasn’t outright asked for a trade but he’s voiced his want to play and the Kings have no reason to keep him. He could instantly slot into another team as a full time starter and would be a solid low end investment as a three specialist with some peripherals.

    Greg Monroe – This is buy low opportunity not necessarily a pickup, but that may change in some of your leagues if an owner is impatient. Monroe has been on the trade block for months and there haven’t been any biters. Don’t give up much for him, but for the more adventurous he provides a nice risk-reward opportunity.

    Brandon Knight – He’s been miserable in Phoenix and Ryan McDonough has still insisted they like him in a bench role and aren’t looking to trade him…which in McDonough language means they’re going to try their best to dump him but just not at their own expense. He’s got top 60 upside and that should not be forgotten.

    Injury Update: 

    Rondae Hollis-Jefferson is dealing with an ankle injury and he could miss a couple more games, but he will likely play this week.

    Jeremy Lin is day-to-day with his hamstring issue and should make his return any day. The Nets have been cautious with him the last week or so.

    Nic Batum is probable for Monday after dealing with an eye injury.

    Marco Belinelli (hamstring) is questionable for Monday’s game.

    Marvin Williams (knee) has a bone bruise and will be re-evaluated in a week. He opens up time for Frank Kaminsky.

    Dirk Nowitzki (Achilles) has is day-to-day and is likely going to be hit with DNPs in the coming weeks as the issue continues to linger for him.

    Draymond Green (ankle) is questionable for Monday.

    Paul George (ankle) is expected to miss at least one more game on Wednesday.

     

Fantasy News

  • Marcus Morris
    PF, New York Knicks

    The Knicks have announced the signings of Marcus Morris and Reggie Bullock.

    Morris is on a one-year, $15 million deal while Bullock is coming in on a two-year deal worth less than $4.7 million annually, with a second season that isn't fully guaranteed. While both players began the offseason as potential standard-league targets, there's not much to see given the sudden depth of the Knicks roster. Morris will be one of five players who should mostly be playing power forward, while Bullock will slot into a busy backcourt and is already expected to miss at least a month of the season. New York's rotations are going to be a mess and we'd steer clear.

    Source: New York Knicks

  • Reggie Bullock
    SG-SF, New York Knicks

    Reggie Bullock is expected to miss at least one month of the regular season, per SNY's Ian Begley.

    Bullock, who initially agreed to a two-year deal worth $21 million, re-worked his contract to clock in at two years (with a second year that isn't fully guaranteed) for under the $4.7 million exception. There's no word on what exactly Bullock is dealing with, though he suffered from neck stiffness and plantar fasciitis in his right foot late last season. There's no need to monitor Bullock in standard leagues to open the year.

    Source: Ian Begley on Twitter

  • Markelle Fultz
    PG, Orlando Magic

    Speaking to Sirius XM, Steve Clifford said that although there remains no timetable for Markelle Fultz (shoulder), he is making good progress.

    Clifford said, "You know, right now we don't have a timetable for when he'll be back, but he's really doing a great job." Fultz simply wasn't ready to suit up, and even though we haven't really had any concrete updates on him since his last game on November 18, we're still expecting him to be ready to start the season. Fultz will make for a late-round flier on the chance that he finally gets healthy and puts it all together.

    Source: Sirius XM NBA Radio on Twitter

  • Blake Griffin
    PF, Detroit Pistons

    Blake Griffin (left knee) has been cleared to start light basketball activities after undergoing arthroscopic surgery in late April.

    Griffin dealt with left knee soreness in the season's final games and missed the first two games of the playoffs. His issues were dealt with quickly after the season ended and he should be ready for the start of the season. Look for Griffin to come off draft boards in the early-middle rounds after he put up a career season last year, though there might not be much profit margin at that price. There's a definite 8-cat lean as well.

    Source: Rod Beard on Twitter

  • Nicolo Melli
    PF, New Orleans Pelicans

    Pelicans forward Nicolo Melli underwent knee surgery and will not participate in Italy’s training camp at the end of July, ahead of the FIBA World Tournament.

    This comes out of nowhere and the only relative information we have is that Melli will be re-evaluated on a week-to-week basis. The Italian big should be fine for the Pelicans training camp where he will compete for the backup power forward minutes as long as the surgery is not anything too serious.

    Source: Sportando

  • Bam Adebayo
    C, Miami Heat

    Bam Adebayo is envisioning himself as a better all-around player, with averages of 16.0 points, 10.0 rebounds and 5.0 assists this upcoming season.

    Adebayo, who turns 22 on Thursday, averaged 8.9 points, 7.3 rebounds and 2.2 assists in 23.3 minutes while playing in all 82 of the Heat’s games last season. With the Heat trading center Hassan Whiteside to the Blazers earlier this month, Adebayo is expected to be the clear-cut choice at starting center and a fantasy breakout candidate.

    Source: Miami Herald

  • Reggie Bullock
    SG-SF, New York Knicks

    Reggie Bullock has agreed to sign a two-year deal with the Knicks for less than the $4.7 million exception.

    It was reported that Bullock intitally had an offer for two years and $20 million so this is a considerable drop on the monetary terms. The two parties had to rework their agreement after unanticipated health issues that almost made the deal fall through. This is also the end of the domino that had Marcus Morris back off his initial agreement with the Spurs and sign a deal with the Knicks instead. New York seems to be loaded in the forward positions and it’s anyone’s guess who earns the minutes to become fantasy relevant next year.

    Source: Shams Charania on Twitter

  • Dragan Bender
    PF, Phoenix Suns

    As Dragan Bender continues to explore the NBA market, the Cavs and the Raptors are among the teams that have inquired about the former lottery pick.

    The European market also remains an option for the Croatian forward as CSKA Moscow and Fenerbache are monitoring his situation. Bender is still only 21 years old and teams around the NBA could still take a chance on him after what has been a disappointing NBA career so far with averages of 5.3 points and 3.8 rebounds in 131 career games.

    Source: Orazio Francesco Cauchi on Twitter

  • Raul Neto
    PG, Philadelphia Sixers

    Raul Neto could end up being Ben Simmons' backup to begin the 2019-20 season.

    Right now, the two candidates to be the backup to starter Ben Simmons are Neto and former two-way player Shake Milton, a second-year combo guard who earned a lot of minutes at the point in the NBA Summer League. Neto started 53 of the 81 games in which he appeared as a rookie in 2015-16, but only started once over the past three seasons. He has averages of 4.8 points, 1.9 assists and 37.7 percent shooting from 3-point range in 14.2 minutes and it’s highly unlikely that he gains fantasy value even if he earns the backup job.

    Source: Bucks County Courier Times

  • Chris Paul
    PG, Oklahoma City Thunder

    Brian Windhorst of ESPN is reporting that the Heat are open to the idea of teaming up Chris Paul with Jimmy Butler, but what has hung the entire negotiation up is the discussion of picks.

    The Thunder holds two of Miami’s future first round draft picks, an unprotected selection in 2021 and a protected one in 2023. The Heat want those included in a potential deal and Oklahoma City has no shortage of assets as, since draft night, Sam Presti has acquired a remarkable eight first-round picks. Windhorst also added that the Heat seem to be CP3’s preferred destination and if he actually ends up in South Beach, he could retain his strong fantasy value.

    Source: NESN.com