October 23, 2018, 10:20 pmMarkelle FultzG, Philadelphia Sixers
Markelle Fultz shot 6-for-9 from the field for 13 points with six boards, one assist, one block and one 3-pointer in 21 minutes against the Pistons on Tuesday.
With Ben Simmons (back) out, Fultz drew the start over T.J. McConnell (32 minutes), but sat down the stretch and overtime, playing only 21 minutes. On a positive note, Fultz had his best shooting night of the young season, going 6-for-9 from the field and 1-for-2 from beyond the arc, which has been a rare occurrence. Fultz is clearly being brought along slowly and will be frustrating to own for much of the season.
October 23, 2019, 11:54 amTacko FallC, Boston Celtics
Brad Stevens said that Tacko Fall is "very close" to returning, but he noted that he wasn't going to be active anyway.
The Celtics are expected to start the season with Daniel Theis, Enes Kanter, Robert Williams and Vincent Poirier as their group of centers. Tacko was able to earn a roster spot but he is still far away from entering the rotation and he should be left on the waiver wire for now.
October 23, 2019, 11:47 amD.J. AugustinPG, Orlando Magic
Steve Clifford said this morning that he will deploy a starting five of D.J. Augustin, Evan Fournier, Aaron Gordon, Jonathan Isaac and Nikola Vucevic in tonight’s season opener against the Cavs.
Markelle Fultz made some noise in the preseason with his return to action after almost a year, but he is not ready to dethrone Augustin just yet. Clifford will stick with his veteran point guard for now and it will be interesting to see if Fultz can challenge DJ for the starting gig. Augustin exceeded his ADP last year and he should continue to produce a solid amount of triples and assists this year too.
Source: Josh Robbins on Twitter
October 23, 2019, 11:31 amLuke KennardSG, Detroit Pistons
With Blake Griffin out for at least two weeks, James L. Edwards of the Athletic is speculating that it would make sense for Luke Kennard to begin the season as a starter.
When Griffin missed the first two playoff games last season, Dwane Casey inserted Kennard into the starting lineup in order to generate more offense and he was the team’s best offensive players in those two games, averaging 20.0 points. Detroit’s second unit this season was supposed to have some offensive firepower with Kennard and Derrick Rose running things, but that could change drastically with Griffin now sidelined. Bruce Brown. would be the odd man out in this scenario, while Kennard could play his way into standard-league value if he can deliver consistently for a Pistons team that will have a hard time scoring.
Source: The Athletic
October 23, 2019, 11:13 amIvan RabbPF, Memphis Grizzlies
Forward Ivan Rabb is finalizing a two-way contract with the Knicks, according to Shams Charania of the Athletic.
Rabb had some nice moments with the Grizzlies last year but he became the odd man out after the team drafted Brandon Clarke this summer. The Knicks are actually smart to take a flier on the young forward, while David Fizdale is familiar with him from his days as a head coach in Memphis and he will probably give him a chance sooner than later.
Source: Shams Charania on Twitter
October 23, 2019, 10:54 amRobert Williams IIIC-F, Boston Celtics
Brad Stevens said that Robert Williams will have no restrictions when the Celtics face the Sixers for the season opener tonight.
Williams had an underwhelming preseason and he missed some action due to a concussion, so his role is unclear going forward. The Celtics will need big bodies to defend Joel Embiid so it’s likely that he sees some action tonight, but it’s hard to trust him in fantasy for now.
Source: Jay King on Twitter
October 23, 2019, 10:29 amGiannis AntetokounmpoPF, Milwaukee Bucks
Giannis Antetokounmpo told a Harvard University professor that if the Bucks underperform this season, it would make his decision on whether to stick with the team "a lot more difficult."
The unusually pointed language came in a spring 2019 interview with Anita Elberse, a Harvard Business School professor who was researching a case study on the Bucks' turnaround and the challenges a small-market NBA team faces in retaining a superstar-level player. "I want the Bucks to build a winning culture," Elberse and her co-author, master's student Melcolm Ruffin, quoted Antetokounmpo as saying. "So far, we have been doing great, and, if this lasts, there's no other place I want to be. But if we're underperforming in the NBA next year, deciding whether to sign becomes a lot more difficult." The Greek Freak will likely be eligible to sign a five-year, $253 million contract extension with the Bucks next summer, or to opt out and potentially become a free agent in 2021. Giannis has been adamant about not wanting to discuss his free agency this year but we should expect to hear more noise and more rumors for the league’s MVP.
Source: Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel
October 23, 2019, 9:46 amAndre IguodalaSF, Memphis Grizzlies
Marc Stein of the NY Times is reporting that, although Andre Iguodala won't get a chance to play for the Warriors this year, he is expected to return to Golden State next year.
The Warriors traded the veteran to the Grizzlies in order to clear his $17.2 million salary for the 2019-20 season, but he will be a free agent again next offseason. Iggy isn't with Memphis to begin the year and he has already been announced as out for the team's season opener against the Heat. According to Stein, the organization will remain patient looking for something in return in a trade rather than letting him go for nothing. The Lakers, Clippers, Rockets and Sixers could be among the interested teams if a deal goes down during the season.
Source: NY Times
October 23, 2019, 9:28 amDe'Anthony MeltonPG, Memphis Grizzlies
De'Anthony Melton, who missed all of the preseason with a back strain, is available to play on Wednesday against the Heat.
Melton was initially ruled out for 4-8 weeks after suffering a stress reaction in his back but he is way ahead of schedule. It’s unlikely that he gets much, if any, playing time tonight but he should be in your radar in deep leagues as the Grizzlies are expected to give plenty of time to their young players this season.
Source: Chris Herrington on Twitter
October 23, 2019, 9:21 amLonzo BallPG, New Orleans Pelicans
The Pelicans will exercise the fourth-year options on newcomers Lonzo Ball and Josh Hart, according to Andrew Lopez of ESPN.
Both players are entering their third season and were obtained by the Pelicans from the Lakers as part of the Anthony Davis trade. Ball started last night next to Jrue Holiday while Josh Hart was impressive coming off the bench. The Pelicans clearly view both guys as integral pieces in their rebuilding plan and picking up their option is a mere formality.
Source: Andrew Lopez of ESPN
October 23, 2019, 3:10 amLou WilliamsSG, Los Angeles Clippers
Lou Williams efficiently provided 21 points (8-for-14 FGs, 4-for-4 FTs) along with five rebounds, seven assists, a steal and a three in 37 minutes off the bench in a win over the Lakers on Tuesday.
Williams has averaged over 30 minutes per game in a season just once in his career. That season (2017-18) he ranked 34th/44th (8-cat/9-cat) because the team needed his offense. There's a decent chance that Williams can at least get close to that mark for the period of time that Paul George is out. The starting backcourt of Patrick Beverley and Landry Shamet was less impressive as Beverley had little besides 10 rebounds and six assists and while Shamet hit two treys, he wasn't anything more than a threes streamer overall.