September 24, 2020, 3:24 am
Welcome to Wednesday’s Daily Dish! The Miami Heat added another chapter to their surprising playoff run on Wednesday by claiming a 112-109 victory and now hold a 3-1 series edge over the Boston Celtics. Let’s get to some of the top performers on this night.
Gabe Vincent (right knee soreness) was unable to participate in Game 4.
DFS Success Stories
Instead of the recommended adds and drops I provide during the regular season, here are a couple of top performers in each of three daily fantasy price tiers.
Moderately Priced Category
Don’t look now, but the rookie was owned in only 38 percent of Yahoo leagues when the NBA suspended the season in March. His future cost in daily leagues will certainly be on the rise. Herro looked like the best player on the court on Wednesday, when he scored 37 points at the tender age of 20. Even better, Herro made two-thirds of his field goal attempts, going 14-for-21. He shot 5-for-10 on 3-pointers, racked up six rebounds and passed out three assists. All of this led ESPN to compare him to Magic Johnson, who managed 42 points and 15 rebounds when he was the same age in the clinching game of the 1980 NBA Finals. He may not be Earvin, but Herro is looking like an incredible choice for the Heat at 13th overall in the 2019 Draft. Herro has totaled 59 points in his last two appearances despite averaging 13.2 points per contest in five games against the Bucks. Not bad for a guy who wasn’t even in Erik Spoelstra’s starting lineup.
I’ve tabbed Theis here once before, largely because the Celtics have very few contributing players who were cheap in full-season fantasy leagues. Theis only scored eight points while adding an assist, but he was effective nonetheless. Shooting 4-for-5 from the field gave Theis his best field goal percentage since Game 6 versus the Raptors, when he went 9-for 11 in a double overtime affair. Of his nine rebounds, four of them came on the offensive end. Now, offensive boards may not provide any value in most NBA fantasy leagues. However, I would have loved seeing that line for a player in my NCAA fantasy league where they effectively count twice. It was certainly fun having both Duke’s Vernon Carey and Precious Achiuwa of Memphis on my squad last season. Both of them averaged close to three offensive rebounds per game in college, and both are projected to be first round picks of NBA teams in the upcoming draft.
Affordable Luxury Category
As good as he has looked in the postseason, a full third of Yahoo leagues left Dragic unowned back in March. Yes, Dragic averaged 28 minutes in the regular season compared to nearly 35 minutes per contest in the playoffs. However, the efficiency has also risen: he entered Wednesday’s game shooting 38.3 percent from long range during the playoffs compared to 36.7 percent in the regular season. Hayward wasn’t afraid to let it fly in Game 4, ending 3-for-9 from behind the arc. He can improve upon the 8-for-21 mark from the field, but it still felt like a bounce back from the nightmare Game 3 that resulted in a loss for the Heat and just two made field goals for Dragic. On Wednesday he added five rebounds, three assists and two steals in 39 minutes of play.
I’m blurring the category lines a bit here but wanted to highlight a diverse fantasy line from a guy who missed an entire month of action before returning in Game 3. Despite bringing Hayward off the bench, Brad Stevens hasn’t been afraid to use him. Hayward played 30 minutes on Sunday and another 31 minutes in Game 4. After finishing with eight points in his first game back, Hayward scored 14 on Wednesday. He made a pair of threes and was a perfect 4-for-4 at the foul line while shooting 4-for-9 from the floor. Hayward also chipped in with seven rebounds and three assists. The numbers may not blow you away given that he was named to the All-Star team in 2017, but Boston needs him in the rotation.
High Roller Category
Adebayo took just over half as many shots as Jimmy Butler, but he had a similar impact on the game. When he wasn’t receiving lobs to dunk, Adebayo was pulling down a game-high 12 rebounds. He shot 7-for-11 from the field on his way to 20 points. Bam had four assists and two steals despite failing to block a shot for the first time since Game 5 against the Bucks. Then again, Adebayo had 27 points and 16 rebounds in Miami’s only loss of the current series. His consistency has helped to buoy the Heat during what has been a breakout season for the third-year player. As a result, his squad is now 11-2 during the postseason.
To say that Tatum got off to a slow start would be an understatement. He went scoreless in the first half of Game 4 before erupting for 16 points in the third quarter and ending with 28 for the game. Tatum made at least four triples for the seventh time this postseason while recovering to shoot 10-for-22 from the floor. He contributed defensively with three blocks and a steal; the last time he blocked that many was on August 21 against the Sixers, when he had four. Tatum also hauled in nine rebounds and passed out four assists. While one can make an argument that Jaylen Brown played a stronger game, Tatum was the engine that helped the Celtics make a late run before coming up just short.