• Pickups of the Night: Thursday, January 31 ($)

    We had a busy six-game Thursday night so let’s hop to it. As usual, players owned in at least 50 percent of leagues will not be covered since they are already widely owned.

    Pickups

    Shabazz Napier, BKN (35% owned) had 15 points, two 3s, seven assists and two blocks on 5-for-13 from the field. Over the last four games with Spencer Dinwiddie (thumb) out of action, Napier has put up top-100 value in over 27 minutes a game. Feel safe to stream him in standard leagues until Dinwiddie comes back despite the poor shooting.

    Ed Davis, BKN (12%) pulled down 11 rebounds to go with a block and six points in 20 minutes. And that’s the Ed Davis story. He’s been averaging 10.7 boards over the last two weeks in almost 22 minutes a game and can be streamed as a rebounding specialist while he’s hot.

    Bryn Forbes, SAS (25%) managed to collect 11 points, three 3s, five rebounds and a block in 28 minutes. Forbes has been a top-150 play over the last week and over the past two months so it’s a bit of a baseline.

    Fred VanVleet, TOR (48%) had a measly 10 points, two 3s, three assists and a steal off the bench and that’s an approximation of what his upside usually is while all the major Raptors are healthy, i.e. about the top-140 in 9-cat he’s been on the season.

    Norman Powell, TOR (1%) had 10 points, two 3s and a steal in 23 minutes. He’s been a top-175 play over the past two months and can be used as a deep-league stream for 3s and some points if there are  no better options.

    D.J. Augustin, ORL (42%) hit 4-for-8 from the field and all 10 of his freebies to finish with 20 points, two 3s and two assists. Augustine has maintained low-end guard stats for most of the season and that’s what you use him for.

    Dwight Powell, DAL (19%) had 10 points, five rebounds, a trey, two blocks and a steal in 24 minutes and had been a top-160 play over the last week with a heavy roto lean. He’s on deck to get heavy run in Dallas with DeAndre Jordan on his way to New York.

    Maxi Kleber, DAL (7%) probably has a better chance than Powell to hit top-120 value (top-160 on the season) but he got into foul trouble on Thursday and only had four points (one 3), eight rebounds and a steal.

    Kevon Looney, GSW (9%) collected 14 points, five rebounds, two steals and two blocks in 23 minutes. Ironically, Looney’s 9-cat value has been better since DeMarcus Cousins returned to the court. He’s been bringing in top-60 value over the last few weeks but should settle in closer to top-100 when some of the randomness averages into the sample size.

    Patrick Beverley, LAC (41%) continued his recent tear with 17 points to go with five treys, eight boards, four assists, two steals and a block in 37 minutes. Beverley’s quiet 9-cat game has been shining lately with top-50 value over the last two weeks. The biggest difference with his value in that span has been the defensive stats- 1.4 steals and 0.9 blocks compared to 0.7 and 0.5 on the season (top-165 on the year).

    Avery Bradley, LAC (10%) got 13 points, two 3s, eight rebounds, two steals and a block in 35 minutes against the Lakers and it marked the seventh straight game Bradley has scored 10 or more points. He’s in the middle of the best stretch of the season and probably the best he’s looked since his Boston days. Bradley has top-190 value over the last two weeks and top-150 over his last four games so maybe he has finally turned a corner for deep-leaguers.

    Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, LAC (25%) managed to add some cash counters which is the major difference between pulling in value (top-120 over the last week vs. top-180 on the season). SGA had 10 points on 4-of-12 shooting with a trey, three assists and two steals but until he can maintain any peripheral stats, he’s strictly a deep-league play.

    Ivica Zubac, LAL (44%) didn’t exactly have himself a great game- seven points and three rebounds but he still played more minutes than JaVale McGee and Tyson Chandler, but just barely, with McGee closing in overtime with with LeBron James finally back in action. The writing might be on the wall for Zubac’s run of top-100 value.

    Lance Stephenson, LAL (7%) hit five 3s and ended up with 20 points, three rebounds and a steal in 30 minutes even with LeBron James back. Stephenson has been a low-end standard-league play over his last few games but his ability to do that with LeBron in the lineup is very much in doubt.

Fantasy News

  • Hassan Whiteside - C - Miami Heat

    According to Barry Jackson, Hassan Whiteside is expected to opt into the final year of his deal, which would pay him $27.1 million.

    This was obviously anticipated, but with Whiteside dissatisfied with his current role with the Heat, there was a sliver of doubt that he'd want to stay in Miami. Jackson mentions that there were talks regarding a Whiteside for Mike Conley deal that didn't get very far. The Heat will be looking at a luxury tax bill unless they can cut some salary, so Whiteside isn't a lock to remain on the roster. A change of scenery could help his fantasy outlook, as unlikely as a trade may be. We're likely to see him return in a backup center role that limits him to late-round fantasy production at best.

    Source: Miami Herald

  • Patrick Beverley - G - Los Angeles Clippers

    According to Sean Deveney, Patrick Beverley will be taking as many as five free agent meetings prior to meeting with the Clippers.

    The Clippers have bigger fish to fry, and Beverley might not want to wait around for them. He will rightfully be getting a lot of attention during free agency. While Beverley is not a great offensive player, he could fit in a variety of places with his defensive intensity and leadership. Anywhere from a rebuilding team like in his hometown of Chicago where they could use some veteran tenacity to a potential contending team like Lakers who just need a lockdown defender, Beverley would be a nice addition that shouldn't break the bank. No matter where he goes, he should continue to get enough minutes (he hasn't played less than 27 mpg since his rookies season) to be relevant in shallow leagues.

    Source: Sean Deveney on Twitter

  • Alvin Gentry - Team - New Orleans Pelicans

    The Pelicans have picked up Alvin Gentry's team option through the 2020-21 season.

    It's encouraging to see David Griffin already showing faith in Gentry. The Pelicans' rebuild is off to what seems like a great start under Griffin. Winning the draft lottery and getting a great haul for Anthony Davis prior to the draft is just be the beginning of a franchise-defining offseason.

    Source: Andrew Lopez on Twitter

  • Chris Paul - G - Houston Rockets

    The Rockets have had conversations about Clint Capela and "preliminary conversations" about Chris Paul, per Shams Charania.

    The Rockets reportedly want to discuss Paul trades with teams that can absorb his three years and $125 million. That's a pretty short list. That deal will be much harder to move than Capela's, though you can be sure that the Rockets probably won't move their young center unless it's a deal that improves both the on-court product and the cap sheet. That proposition is a lot weaker in any deal that includes Paul's monster salaries.

    Source: The Athletic

  • Ed Davis - C - Brooklyn Nets

    Ed Davis is expected to be a hot commodity in free agency and should be looking at multi-year offers, per Shams Charania.

    Davis is a machine on the glass and has drawn rave reviews as a quality teammate and person wherever he goes, so it's no surprise that he's drawing interest. A high-energy big who gobbles up rebounds still has a place on just about any roster, even with Davis' other offensive limitations. He'll remain a solid rebounding specialist for deep-league use next season.

    Source: The Athletic

  • Derrick Favors - F/C - Utah Jazz

    Tony Jones of The Athletic is reporting that the Jazz have yet to include Derrick Favors in trade talks for Mike Conley.

    Favors has been linked to the Lakers, though his landing spot is all contingent on the Jazz picking up his team option. He's due to be paid $17.65 million if that option is picked up, and the Grizzlies may have some interest in him if he can be had on an expiring deal. The Jazz don't look to have a ton that the Grizzlies would be interested in terms of roster players, so Utah might need to get creative if they really want Conley.

    Source: Tony Jones on Twitter

  • Mike Conley - G - Memphis Grizzlies

    The Grizzlies have intensified trade discussions surrounding Mike Conley and the Jazz remain the frontrunner to acquire him, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic.

    The Jazz have been connected to Conley since the deadline and have been fairly open about upgrading their point guard group. Conley would be a huge addition, though it's unclear what sort of assets the Grizzlies might be after. A trade would really clear the runway for presumed No. 2 pick Ja Morant.

    Source: The Athletic

  • TJ Warren - F - Phoenix Suns

    Shams Charania is reporting that the Suns have "discussed" trade packages involving T.J. Warren, Josh Jackson and/or the No. 6 pick in the draft.

    Other rumors have the Suns hoping to move up in the draft in pursuit of Darius Garland, though they could also assemble a package to go get themselves a point guard and skip a step or two. Their interest in moving Jackson is not new or surprising, but Warren is a steady hand at the forward spots and should have more interest around the league. With Mikal Bridges and Kelly Oubre looking ready to take over the starting jobs, a trade might be best for Warren's fantasy outlook as well. For now this is all speculation, but the Suns are certainly equipped to deal.

    Source: The Athletic

  • Tony Snell - G - Milwaukee Bucks

    According to Marc Stein, the Bucks are looking to attach draft compensation in order to rid themselves of players like Tony Snell and Ersan Ilyasova.

    Milwaukee has big fish to fry if they want to keep the band together, and they'll need to clear up some salary to make it happen. Snell has two years left on his four-year, $46 million contract while Ilyasova has two more seasons at $7 million a pop, though the final year is not guaranteed. The latter will be far more coveted on the trade market given his skillset and more modest paycheck. The Bucks hold the 30th pick in the draft, though teams might hold out for higher future selections if they're going to throw Milwaukee a bone and help clear the cap sheet.

    Source: Marc Stein on Twitter

  • Rondae Hollis-Jefferson - F - Brooklyn Nets

    Rondae Hollis-Jefferson will become an UFA this summer as the Brooklyn Nets declined to make a qualifying offer.

    It didn't seem like RHJ was a part of the Nets long-term plans for a while now, as shown by the multiple DNP-CD's he received along the course of the season. He's still only 24 years old and could serve as a valuable bench piece on a championship caliber team, it's just unlikely to be the Nets. RHJ finished as the 329th-ranked player in fantasy this season while playing 20.9 minutes on a Nets team that valued its youth. If he's welcomed into the right situation then his value could rise but until then he shouldn't be on anyone's fantasy radar.

    Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter