• Hello Hoop-Ballers! Tuesday was fun, wasn’t it? The Rockets and Warriors shocked the world to make it to the Western Conference Finals. Not.

    Yes, it is all going exactly as everyone expected so far. If you lived in a cave since the start of the 2017-18 season, you haven’t missed much. But you’ve also missed everything. The Warriors and Rockets will play in the Western Conference Finals (the real NBA Finals) over the next two weeks for the chance to hand LeBron’s Cavs another Finals loss (I know, the truth hurts).

    Let’s take a peak at how both teams got there on Tuesday night.

    CP3 GOES BONKERS FOR 41 POINTS TO SEND JAZZ HOME

    With the Rockets heading home nurturing a 3-1 series lead, Tuesday night was a no-brainer in the gambling department. What you might not have guessed, however, is that the Rockets would survive a poor James Harden game.

    That’s right, Chris Paul shouldered the load in a huge way, shooting 13-for-22 from the field and 10-for-12 from the line for 41 points with seven boards, 10 assists, one steal and eight 3-pointers in 38 minutes. CP3 was unstoppable and feeling it throughout the game, making big shot after big shot. The 41 points and eight threes were both career playoff highs. CP3 has made the Western Conference Finals for the first time in his career.

    As mentioned above, Harden struggled all night. He shot an empty 7-for-22 from the field for 18 points, four rebounds, four assists, two steals and one 3-pointer in 35 minutes. The regular season MVP will have a lot to prove against the Warriors in the Western Conference Finals.

    The Jazz ended their season on a sour note, as Donovan Mitchell (leg) was carried off to the locker room with just over seven minutes left in the game. He did not return. Mitchell shot 9-for-17 from the field for 24 points with four boards, nine assists, one steal and two 3-pointers in 34 minutes. Mitchell left the game when the Jazz were down 92-87 with seven minutes left in the fourth quarter. He buckled knees and had to get assisted to the locker room, where he attempted to walk it off but couldn’t shake it off in time to save the Jazz. He finishes the season as a rookie phenom who looks poised to have an all-star career, and maybe then some. Mitchell will be drafted in the top-35 picks among fantasy leagues next season.

    The Rockets will try to take down the defending champion Warriors this weekend in a battle of NBA heavyweights.

    WARRIORS TAKE DOWN PELS, AD IN FIVE GAMES

    We all knew it was coming, it just was a matter of how soon. Three hours after the Rockets punched their ticket to the Western Conference Finals, the Warriors did so as well in a 113-104 win over Anthony Davis and the Pelicans in Game 5 on Tuesday night.

    Steph Curry came back in this series earlier than expected, and he made a heck of a difference. Curry led the Warriors in scoring on Tuesday, shooting 10-for-16 from the field for 28 points, seven boards, eight assists, one steal and three 3-pointers in 37 minutes. He has found his groove and looks poised and ready for a date with the Rockets.

    The big four were all terrific. Kevin Durant posted a 24-6-7-2 line with one 3-pointer in 37 minutes. Meanwhile, Klay Thompson poured in 23 points of his own, adding six boards, three assists, one steal and two 3-pointers in 37 minutes.

    Draymond Green left his mark on the series as well, flexing his DFS muscles on Tuesday. Dray shot 9-for-18 for 19 points, 14 boards, nine assists, three steals, two blocks and one 3-pointer in 40 minutes. It truly took a team effort from the Warriors studs to close out the Pelicans.

    Anthony Davis made his presence known in the NBA playoffs, even though he fell short of reaching the conference finals. AD went out loud and proud with 34 points, 19 boards, one assist, one steal, four blocks and one 3-pointer in 45 minutes. He should flirt with the No. 1 consensus pick in fantasy redraft leagues next season.

    Jrue Holiday continued his playoff tear with a triple-double, despite a losing effort. Holiday finished with 27 points, 10 boards, 11 assists, one steal and two 3-pointers in 46 minutes. He had a coming out party after Boogie Cousins went down for the season. Holiday will be a top-30 pick in redraft leagues next season.

    The Warriors will look to defend their title against the Rockets this weekend in what looks to be the real NBA Finals.

    That will do it for Wednesday’s Daily Dish. Be sure to follow me on Twitter, I’m @RiazD. Don’t forget to follow all of our breaking news and rumors @HoopBallFantasy. Happy Playoffs blog boys!!

Fantasy News

  • Eric Gordon
    SG, Houston Rockets

    Eric Gordon (right knee surgery) has been cleared to start running and could still be able to return to play around Christmas.

    The Rockets, and Gordon, won't get into specifics but the original plan of a late-December return is still on the table. Gordon says he's feeling much better and it'll be interesting to see if his play improves as well. The sharpshooter was hitting just 30.9 percent of his shots before going under the knife.

    Source: Houston Chronicle

  • JaMychal Green
    PF, Los Angeles Clippers

    JaMychal Green (tailbone) is questionable for Saturday's game.

    Green has missed the last five games but does appear to be making some progress. He's been a solid deep-league play this season and has become a quality stretch four.

    Source: Tomer Azarly on Twitter

  • Devin Booker
    SG, Phoenix Suns

    Devin Booker (sore wrist) will not play on Saturday against the Spurs.

    Booker also missed practice on Friday due to a right forearm contusion, so we have some more clarity about the issue. Hopefully the injury doesn't sideline him into next week. Booker's absence will open up the guard rotation substantially, so players like Ty Jerome, Elie Okobo and Tyler Johnson should see more run, while the ripple effect could also benefit guys like Mikal Bridges and Cam Johnson. Bridges is expected to start in Booker's place.

    Source: Tom Orsborn on Twitter

  • Jakarr Sampson
    SF, Indiana Pacers

    The Pacers are listing JaKarr Sampson (back) as questionable for Sunday.

    Sampson has been out for nearly a month now and isn't worth tracking in all but the deepest of fantasy leagues.

    Source: NBA Injury Report

  • Nikola Vucevic
    C, Orlando Magic

    Nikola Vucevic (right ankle sprain) is questionable to face the Pelicans on Sunday.

    The general vibe is that Vucevic will be able to make his return tomorrow after missing the last 11 games, so fantasy GMs can keep their fingers crossed. Khem Birch will likely go back out of the rotation when Vuc is at full strength, while Mo Bamba's stock takes a hit — though he's worth holding onto in 14-teamers and beyond given his excellent play while Orlando was shorthanded.

    Source: NBA Injury Report

  • Tyson Chandler
    C, Houston Rockets

    Tyson Chandler (illness) is questionable for Saturday's game.

    Chandler has missed the last five games and isn't on the fantasy radar.

    Source: NBA Injury Report

  • Dragan Bender
    PF, Milwaukee Bucks

    Dragan Bender (right ankle sprain) will not play on Saturday.

    Bender hasn't appeared in Milwaukee's last five games but he has only been on the injured list for the last three. In better, and equally irrelevant, news, Kyle Korver has been taken off the injury report and is good to go.

    Source: NBA Injury Report

  • Giannis Antetokounmpo
    PF, Milwaukee Bucks

    Giannis Antetokunmpo (right quad tendon soreness) is questionable for Saturday's game.

    Antetokounmpo was also questionable to face the Grizzlies last night but was ultimately cleared to play, though a SEGABABA against Cleveland seems like a great spot for a night off if he's truly dealing with an injury. You can upgrade the rest of the Bucks in that case as there will be plenty of shots to go around. Eric Bledsoe is also ruled out, so it could be open season. Ersan Ilyasova is the most likely winner if Giannis sits, though DJ Wilson and Sterling Brown are dart throws in deeper formats.

    Source: NBA Injury Report

  • Kyle Kuzma
    PF, Los Angeles Lakers

    Kyle Kuzma said that his current left ankle sprain is unrelated to the stress reaction that cost him the beginning of the year.

    That's good news, and Kuzma is hoping to return to the court in the next few games after missing the last two contests. He shouldn't be considered a 12-team asset at this point, though his name value is keeping him rostered.

    Source: Dave McMenamin on Twitter

  • Jae Crowder
    PF, Memphis Grizzlies

    Jae Crowder (left ankle soreness) is questionable to face the Wizards on Friday.

    Crowder has been a solid top-125 player this season, finding a comfortable role on a rebuilding Memphis team. That said, his poor shooting means he won't fit with every roster, so he's not someone you need to make space for in all leagues depending on your team build. If Crowder can't go it should lead to more minutes for Kyle Anderson, Bruno Cabcolo and Solomon Hill. That's also the order that fantasy GMs should rank the replacements.

    Source: Grizzlies PR on Twitter