• With seven games on tap we had yet another eventful night in the Association.  James Harden continued his quest for fantasy hegemony, Giannis Antetokounmpo couldn’t fend off the Raptors and the Clippers just kept winning.  With that, here’s Tuesday’s Daily Dish.

    Pacers 110, Hornets 94

    Playing without Monta Ellis (groin), the Pacers finally seemed to unclog their offense on Monday.  Glenn Robinson III started in Ellis’ place, but was all but invisible in his 33 minutes…  On a more positive note, both Myles Turner and Paul George scored 22 points in full, efficient lines, and Jeff Teague double-doubled with 16 points and 11 assists.

    For the Hornets it simply came down to making shots.  Kemba Walker and Nicolas Batum combined to go 8-for-29, and without their versatile offensive engines the team struggled to get much going… Marco Belinelli saw 28 minutes off the bench and continued his solid play, scoring 14 points with three rebounds two assists, one steal and one 3-pointer.  He’s returning 10th round value right now, and is worth owning if you’re looking for help in threes.

    Raptors 122, Bucks 100

    Although this game ended in a blowout, the Bucks showed just enough fight in the third quarter to keep Toronto’s starters on the floor.  DeMar DeRozan led the team with 30 points, as he repeatedly got into the lane and drew contact, making 15-of-15 from the charity stripe…  

    While his numbers don’t exactly jump out of the box score, Kyle Lowry was instrumental in captaining the offense for the Raps.  He was efficient on his way to 18 points and seven assists, and continues to be red hot from beyond the arc, where he’s now knocking down 3.1 treys per game…  Finally, Terrence Ross scored 25 points in 21 minutes off the bench, but still isn’t much more than an end of bench guy in standard leagues.

    The Bucks saw both Giannis Antetokounmpo and Jabari Parker turn in phenomenal performance, but the two young stars got little in the way of help from their supporting cast.  GiAnt (let’s make that nickname stick) started slowly, but came roaring back in the second half to finish with 30 points, eight boards, five assists and three steals.  Despite being almost completely incapable of hitting a shot outside of the restricted area he’s been a top-5 player this season and shows no sign of letting up…  Parker rebounded from Saturday’s dud to score 27 points on 17 shots, as he continues to flash his immense upside on the offensive end.

    Heat 112, Wizards 101

    Goran Dragic went off, dropping 34 points, five boards, five assists, one steal and two threes.  Hopefully this is a sign that he’s finally heating up…  Elsewhere, Hassan Whiteside finished with a stacked double-double, scoring 17 points with 16 boards and plenty of defense.  His free throw shooting has regressed from last year’s second half, which is the only hole in his otherwise solid fantasy game… Miami rotation remains crowded, with Tyler Johnson, Josh Richardson, James Johnson, and Wayne Ellington all seeing around 30 minutes apiece.  It’ll bear watching how things shake out once Justise Winslow returns.

    For Washington it was more of the same, as John Wall and Bradley Beal both posted monster lines while the rest of the team struggled… Otto Porter turned in a true dud, with just nine points, four boards, one trey and nothing else.  He won’t be as good as the second round value he’s flashed so far, but he’ll be better than he was on Monday.

    Rockets 122, Nets 118

    It was again the James Harden show for the Rockets, who needed every one of his 36 points to pull out the win against Brooklyn.  He just missed a triple-double with 11 assists and eight rebounds.  Harden is fantasy’s eighth best player in standard leagues, and only his 5.6 turnovers per game keeps him outside the top-5…  Eric Gordon continued his strong play off the bench, dropping 24 points in 29 minutes, most of them coming from his six 3-pointers.  He’s still isn’t bringing much to the table outside of threes, but is retaining ninth round value by dropping 3.5 per contest.

    Brook Lopez scored efficiently on his way to 26 points, but – while the defense was there – he only added one rebound and two assists…  Jeremy Lin returned, and played 20 minutes off the bench.  His minutes restriction should be lessened as the week goes along, and he was still able to pour in 10 points and seven assists in limited action.  He should be fired up in all season long formats.

    Mavs 112, Nuggets 92

    Dallas’ perimeter starters all contributed to the win, as Deron Williams, Wesley Matthews and Harrison Barnes all finished in double figures.  Williams remains fantasy fool’s gold, but Matthews and Barnes have been solid mid round values thus far…  Salah Mejri made a splash in his 22 minutes, finishing with seven points, eight boards, one steal and four blocks.  As long as Andrew Bogut is on the shelf Mejri is worth a look in standard leagues.

    The Nuggets looked generally a mess outside of their young studs, led by Nikola Jokic.  Despite playing just 26 minutes he made them count, scoring 27 points with eleven boards, four assists and one block.  He shot 10-of-12 from the field and 7-of-7 at the line as well; here’s hoping you listened to us and didn’t sell low…  Emmanuel Mudiay and Jamal Murray also showed out on Monday, as the guards both shot 50% from the floor and combined for 32 points.

    Kings 116, Lakers 92

    The Kings pulled out the win behind DeMarcus Cousins (31 points, 16 boards, five assists and five combined steals and blocks) and Darren Collison (20 points, four assists, four treys), but lost Rudy Gay to a right hip flexor.  It isn’t clear at this time if Gay will miss significant time, but Omri Casspi looked good filling in for him and is worth a speculative add.

    D’Angelo Russell saw his workload increase to 20 minutes and he made them count, scoring 17 points (on 6-of-10 shooting) with four assists, two rebounds and three triples…  Elsewhere, Jordan Clarkson and Lou Williams both struggled to find their shot, and Julius Randle absolutely disappeared.

    Clippers 121, Blazers 120

    The “core four” for the Clippers each had a heavy hand in the team’s win on Monday.  Blake Griffin double-doubled in his return to action, scoring 26 points with 12 boards and six assists…  Chris Paul and J.J. Redick were both efficient offensively on their way to a combined 40 points, while DeAndre Jordan dropped a combined six blocks and steals in locking up the paint.

    Both C.J. McCollum and Damian Lillard were spectacular for the Blazers, but the team simply ran out of gas against the league’s second best defense.  Lillard scored 24 in a full line, while McCollum added 25 of his own…  Mason Plumlee was officially on triple-double watch, as he finished with 18 points, seven boards and six assists, adding an impressive five blocks and a steal to round out one of his better nights of the season.  He’ll continue to be a bit up and down, but still should be owned in standard leagues.

    That’ll do it for this Tuesday’s dish.  Follow @HoopBallTweets for up to the minute updates or hit me up on Twitter (@AbyssAlsoGazes) if you have any questions.  See you all next week.

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