• Sean Deveney wrote on Thursday that the consensus in Las Vegas among front office executives is that “a major deal involving (the Celtics) is coming soon.

    This is good stuff and it makes a lot of sense for all parties.

    Deveney writes about Russell Westbrook and surely the Celtics would love to get him, but there isn’t a ton of smoke surrounding a potential deal by the sound of things.  His sources tell him that “Westbrook’s representatives have been given no word of a potential deal.”

    The part that gets interesting and doable is when Deveney writes “the likely target for the Celtics, according to front office sources, is Clippers forward Blake Griffin.”

    From the article:

    The Clippers have been weighing trading Griffin all season , and the possibility of a three-team package involving Sacramento sending Rudy Gay to the Clippers has emerged.  The Celtics would give up some number of their upcoming draft picks, but opposing front-office members say they don’t want to give up either Brooklyn pick Boston can own in the next two years.

    Well of course Danny Ainge doesn’t want to give up something to get something as that’s not really his style.  Now let’s get to the Clippers’ consternation because everybody has to express their reluctance at some point.

    The Clippers have 31-year-old point guard Chris Paul on hand, and league sources have said that if the Clippers move Griffin — a move that Clippers coach and front-office head Doc Rivers is reluctant to make  — they will want a deal that involves draft picks and a frontline star who can keep them in Western Conference contention.

    This potential deal makes a lot of sense if the teams can maneuver through the details.  The Clippers aren’t winning a title anytime soon and their window is basically shut (sorry Clippers fans).  But they still have to sell that they’ll be competitive to Chris Paul, the fans and Steve Ballmer (in no particular order).

    Rudy Gay can be a nice replacement piece for Griffin and his defensive limitations will be covered up a bit by DeAndre Jordan.  He may also be more motivated to play defense when George Karl isn’t sticking him in the corner so Rajon Rondo can pound all of the air out of the basketball.  But most importantly, getting something for Griffin now while his value is high is imperative if you’re the Clippers.

    For the Kings, as long as you’re getting a pick in the 15-20 range or a nice veteran player of the same ilk, perhaps that needs a change of scenery, you’re doing pretty well.  And if the Celtics get Blake Griffin, they’re in the small group of teams that can threaten the Warriors.

    This seems like a no-brainer for all parties involved, but Ainge hasn’t exactly been able to make things happen on the trade block lately so we’ll see.

     

Fantasy News

  • Kris Dunn
    PG, Chicago Bulls

    Kris Dunn scored 14 points with seven rebounds, four assists and two steals in 32 minutes on Wednesday.

    Dunn also got to the line nine times and hit eight of them, a surprise bonus for a player who averages less than one attempt per game. Dunn is ranked just outside the top-100 thanks to his 2.0 steals per game. He doesn't add much in other categories, but the consistent steals makes him worth rostering in standard leagues.

  • Draymond Green
    PF, Golden State Warriors

    Draymond Green only attempted three shots in 25 minutes on Wednesday, ending with five points (2-3 FG, 1-2 3PT), four rebounds, two assists and a steal, while failing to make it to the charity stripe.

    Green hasn't been the player we've come to know over the last few seasons. It's going to be tough to trust him to play on a nightly basis, and even when he does, there's a lot of volatility in his performances.

  • Marquese Chriss
    PF, Golden State Warriors

    Marquese Chriss turned 18 bench minutes into 11 points, eight rebounds and an assist.

    It was a tough night for Warriors big men going up against Rudy Gobert. Chriss had the best luck, as starter, Willie Cauley-Stein, went 0-for-5 in 14 minutes. Eric Paschall fared slightly better, also coming off the bench for 26 minutes to end with 11 points (4-10 FG), four rebounds and three assists.

  • Lauri Markkanen
    PF, Chicago Bulls

    Lauri Markkanen scored 21 points on 6-of-14 shooting to go with six rebounds and four triples in 34 minutes on Wednesday.

    It was a nice bounce-back effort for Markkanen who scored only eight points on 2-of-11 shooting in 31 minutes on Monday. Markkanen owners are desperately hoping he can get it going after a disappointing first half of the season. He's a top-100 player on the season but has showed the ability to produce top-50 numbers and is a buy-low target.

  • Rudy Gobert
    C, Utah Jazz

    Rudy Gobert stuffed the stat sheet with 22 points (10-13 FG, 2-7 FT), 15 rebounds, two assists, a steal and three blocks on Wednesday night.

    Gobert is making a case to pop into second-round value on the season after tonight's performance. Unfortunately, the 2-for-7 shooting from the charity stripe is a stain on an otherwise excellent line, but owners know to expect this from the Frenchman.

  • DeMar DeRozan
    SG, San Antonio Spurs

    DeMar DeRozan went 8-of-16 from the field and 4-for-4 at the line for 20 points on Wednesday, but was quiet in other areas, notching just five rebounds, one assist and one steal in 36 minutes.

    DeRozan did commit just one turnover, so he does emerge with a 5-cat special if you're in a 9-category league. His assists should be back in no time, so count on him to be a force in the game ROS.

  • Cristiano Felicio
    C, Chicago Bulls

    Cristiano Felicio double-doubled with 12 points on 5-of-6 shooting and 10 rebounds in 22 minutes on Wednesday.

    Felicio came off the bench to start the game but started the second half over Luke Kornet (15 points in 18 minutes on Wednesday). It could be possible Coach Boylen favors Felicio over Kornet moving forward while Wendell Carter Jr. and Daniel Gafford are out. Standard-league GMs should wait for one more good game from Felicio before adding him and those who picked up Kornet should hold for one more game before dropping.

  • LaMarcus Aldridge
    PF, San Antonio Spurs

    LaMarcus Aldridge paced the Spurs with 32 points on 12-of-20 shooting, plus 14 rebounds, two assists, one steal, one 3-pointer and two blocks in Wednesday's 121-117 over Zion Williamson and the Pelicans.

    Aldridge was near-unstoppable as he had his way in the paint and at the line (7-of-8). He was not fazed by all the brouhaha surrounding Zion Williamson's regular season debut. While Zion is clearly the future of fantasy, Aldridge is the here-and-now as he serves up a top-30 value floor night in and night out.

  • Joe Ingles
    SF, Utah Jazz

    Joe Ingles scored 11 points (4-of-7 shooting) and chipped in two rebounds and eight assists on Wednesday.

    The minutes in this contest were all over the place since the Jazz went up 14 after the first quarter and never looked back. Mike Conley saw 19 minutes off the bench and scored eight points on 4-of-10 from the floor, while Georges Niang saw 22 minutes and dropped 11 points of 4-of-7 shooting. For now, Ingles is still starting over Conley so he should be held onto until things change.

  • Andrew Wiggins
    SF, Minnesota Timberwolves

    Andrew Wiggins dished out nine assists on Wednesday to go with 25 points (10-of-19 from the field), five rebounds and four triples in a 117-110 loss to the Bulls.

    Wiggins shot 1-of-6 from the line and turned the ball over five times to put a damper on an otherwise good night. Wiggins has cooled off after his hot start to the season and is ranked just inside the top-100 on the season. His lack of supporting stats and poor percentages (.439 from the field and .733 from the line) hold back his upside. Wiggins should hover around top-100 value the rest of the way.