• Monday night brought a tasty match-up between the Mavs and the Jazz in Utah. This game had the potential to shift the landscape in the crowded Western Conference playoff race. Over in Minnesota, the young Wolves were also looking to continue their late season run and put the Rockets on the brink of elimination. How did everyone fare? Let’s have a look at your Tuesday dish.

    CAVS 109, HAWKS 94

    The Good:

    The Cavs took care of business on their home-court and dominated the second and third quarters, en route to a 15-point win over a good Hawks team. The win guarantees the Cavs home-court advantage vs. all Eastern Conference opponents.

    LeBron James and Kyrie Irving combined for 69 points on 27-of-44 from the field. James also chipped in six rebounds and six assists and was perfect from the charity stripe.

    Kevin Love also contributed with a double double (10 points, 14 rebounds) but shot only 2-of-8 from the field.

    For the Hawks, Jeff Teague, Kent Bazemore and Al Horford all scored at least 20 points. Teague also added nine assists while Horford contributed 11 rebounds for his 17th double double of the season.

    The Bad:

    Paul Millsap scored only nine points on 3-of-14 shooting and 3-of-5 from the line. He added eight rebounds and three blocks but could not get it going offensively in this one.

    Kyle Korver was invisible with only three points on 1-of-5 shooting. He added five rebounds but only 1-of-4 from downtown. Korver is definitely a nominee for dud of the year.

    For the Cavs J.R. Smith did his best Kyle Korver impression scoring only two points in 32 minutes of action. He only added one rebound to round out his line tonight.

    The Takeaway:

    The Cavs cemented their status as East favourites with the win tonight. LeBron has really turned it on just as the NBA playoffs are about to begin. With a healthy Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love, it would be a huge disappointment if the Cavs do not advance to the NBA finals.

    The Hawks play their final game on the road vs. a Wizards team with nothing to play for. Currently sitting in third place in the East, their opponent will not be finalized until the last day of the regular season. If Miami wins their two remaining games, they could overtake the Hawks for third in the East.

    MAGIC 107, BUCKS 98

    The Good:

    All Magic starters scored in double figures in this win. Ersan “Ghostface” Ilyasova led the way with 22 points on 10-of-13 shooting. He also added six rebounds and three blocks.

    Mario Hezonja had one of his best lines of the season scoring 19 points on 7-of-11 shooting. He also added seven assists and a career high five steals.

    The Bucks were led by Greg Monroe’s 23 points. Monroe shot 9-of-15 from the field and 5-of-6 from the line. He finished his night with seven rebounds and three steals.

    Khris Middleton and Jabari Parker each added 17 points for the Bucks and shot a combined 14-of-28 from the field. Middleton led Bucks players with seven assists.

    The Bad:

    A disappointing end to the season for two teams that had lofty expectations at the start. The Magic played this one without two of their more exciting players in Victor Oladipo (concussion) and Aaron Gordon (DNP-CD). It is uncertain if they will play in the season finale vs. the Hornets.

    The Takeaway:

    Both of these teams have budding superstars that have the potential to elevate their teams to the next level. It will be an interesting off-season for both as they examine what went wrong in a season initially filled with promise. Could coaching changes be on the horizon for both teams? Only time will tell. One thing that is certain is that Giannis “The Greek Freak” Antetokounmpo has the potential to really put up some monster numbers next season. He was ranked 59th by Yahoo in pre-season rankings and is currently 27th. He will only get better.

    WIZARDS 120, NETS 111

    The Good:

    The Wizards could have easily rolled over in this one, but instead limited the Nets to 13 points in the fourth quarter to hand Brooklyn their 60th loss of the season.

    Washington was led in scoring by their back-court tandem of Ramon Sessions (21 points on 7-of-10 shooting) and Marcus Thornton (19 points on 7-of-15 shooting). While Sessions and Thornton will never be mistaken for John Wall and Bradley Beal (both DNP-CD) they certainly got the job done tonight.

    The Nets received strong performances from Bojan Bogdanovic (20 points on 8-of-13 shooting) and Shane Larkin who scored 20 points with six rebounds and seven assists.

    Sean Kilpatrick also chipped 17 points and five rebounds for the undermanned Nets.

    The Bad:

    Although it was a high scoring affair, it may have been tough for those in attendance to get too excited for this one. Stars Brook Lopez, Thaddeus Young, John Wall, Bradley Beal and Markieff Morris all sat this one. Mercifully, each team only has one game remaining on their schedules.

    The Takeaway:

    Only one year removed from the Eastern Conference semi-finals, the Wizards have to watch the 2016 playoffs from home. They must also decide what to do with impeding free agent Bradley Beal. The Wizards may have a very different make-up come next year and changes may start with head coach Randy Whitman.

    The Nets were never expected to compete this year. Brook Lopez was able to remain healthy for the duration of the year and rewarded owners with a ranking in the top 25 when looking at his season averages. There will be some trying years to come for Nets fans as they do not hold any draft picks until the second round of the 2017 NBA draft.

Fantasy News

  • Robert Covington
    SF, Minnesota Timberwolves

    Robert Covington (right knee bone bruise) will reportedly be "good to go" for the start of training camp in October.

    Well, this is good news that we didn't hope we would need. Covington played 35 games last year and couldn't get over the bone bruise injury that kept him out for a majority of the year. We expected him to be ready to go, and the fact that we're even discussing this is slightly less than ideal.

    Source: Dane Moore on Twitter

  • Kemba Walker
    PG, Boston Celtics

    Team USA has named Kemba Walker, Marcus Smart and Donovan Mitchell as captains for the FIBA World Cup.

    Congratulations to Mitchell, Walker and Smart on the tremendous honor of being named captains for the USA men's team. This won't have any impact on their upcoming fantasy seasons, but it is a major accomplishment nonetheless. Team USA has an exhibition rematch against Team Australia on Saturday.

    Source: Boston.com Celtics News on Twitter

  • Isaiah Canaan
    PG, International

    Isaiah Canaan has signed a contract with the Shangdong Heroes of the Chinese Basketball Association.

    The veteran journeyman played for the Suns, Wolves and Bucks last season, appearing in 30 games total. Canaan will be looking at a more prominent role and payday overseas as he attempts to build his value back up before trying to latch on to a team towards the end of the year. Canaan is off the fantasy radar.

    Source: Zhang Duo on Twitter

  • Patty Mills
    PG, San Antonio Spurs

    Patty Mills put up 19 points, three assists, two steals, a block and three 3-pointers in Thursday's international exhibition between Team Australia and Team USA.

    The Boomers figure to be one of the chief threats to the Americans in the World Cup and put forth a competitive effort in today's exhibition. Mills has typically been a steady, late-round fantasy option for deep-league play but that may change this season as the Spurs will need to mix in both Derrick White and Dejounte Murray in the backcourt. Chris Goulding tied for the team lead in points, also scoring 19 while hitting four 3-pointers in 22 minutes off the bench.

  • Myles Turner
    C, Indiana Pacers

    Myles Turner put up 15 points and 14 rebounds in Thursday's exhibition win over Team Australia, shooting 6-of-8 from the floor with a 3-pointer.

    Turner didn't get any blocks but we know that last year's league-leader can rack those up in a hurry, whether he's getting them in international competition or not. Look for another early-middle round season out of the talented big man. Kemba Walker led Team USA with 23 points in the 102-86 win.

  • Trevon Bluiett
    PF, Utah Jazz

    Trevon Bluiett and Juwan Morgan sign with the Jazz in the hopes of one day playing in an NBA game.

    Bluiett was on a two-way contract with the Pelicans last season while Juwan Morgan played for the Jazz in the 2019 Summer League. They will both compete for a roster spot in training camp but neither is a guarantee to make the final roster. They both have yet to see the court in an NBA game and can be ignored from a fantasy perspective until that day comes.

    Source: Tony Jones on Twitter

  • Zach Collins
    C, Portland Trail Blazers

    Zach Collins (ankle) began daily contact workouts on Monday and is on pace to head into training camp fully healthy.

    Collins is heading into what could be a breakout season as he is likely to start at the power forward position. In the 2019 playoffs, the Gonzaga product blocked a shot in 11 of the 16 games including three games in which he blocked three, four and five respectively. Collins has averaged around 33% from distance throughout his career which is exactly what he shot in the postseason (7-21). If he is able to improve from long range and plays starters minutes, Collins is a can't-miss player. It's far from a guarantee though as the 21-year-old has never finished with standard-league value. It does seem like Collins will be ready for training camp barring a major setback.

    Source: The Athletic

  • Cory Joseph
    PG, Sacramento Kings

    Nick Nurse said that reports of Cory Joseph missing the FIBA World Cup are “incorrect”.

    Nurse added that he spoke to Joseph on Wednesday and that the guard has his flights booked to China. Joseph was in Canada’s camp at home earlier this month, but did not make the trip to Australia and has missed the past four exhibition games. The situation has become a little bit murky but Canada Basketball keeps holding out hope that Joseph will rejoin the team before they depart for China, which doesn’t happen until Monday.

    Source: John Casey on Twitter

  • Tyronn Lue
    PG, Los Angeles Clippers

    Shams Charania of The Athletic is reporting former Cavs championship-winning coach Tyronn Lue has agreed to join the Clippers as their top assistant coach to Doc Rivers.

    The Lakers and Clippers rivalry continues to heat up. Lue was very close to a deal with the Lakers in May to become their head coach, but the sides couldn’t reach an agreement. Lue now joins Kawhi Leonard as another person to spurn the Lakers this offseason.

    Source: Shams Charania on Twitter

  • PJ Tucker
    SF, Houston Rockets

    P.J. Tucker says he is optimistic about signing a contract extension soon.

    The 34-year-old 3-and-D wing hopes to extend his deal with the Rockets, but a potential extension wouldn't begin until his age-36 season. Houston has him under contract for two more seasons at this point, so they may not be motivated enough to get something done this offseason. However, a maximum Tucker extension would only have him in the $10 million per year range. Even as a 37-year-old, that could be a great deal if he can keep up his current production. Tucker remains a sneaky source of threes and steals late in fantasy drafts or off the wire.

    Source: Kurt Helin on Twitter