• Damian Lillard
    PG, Portland Trail Blazers

    Damian Lillard announced on Tuesday evening that, in the event of a continuation of the NBA season, he would not be participating if the Blazers are scheduled to play 'meaningless games' with no shot at making the playoffs.

    "If we come back and they're just like, 'We're adding a few games to finish the regular season,' and they're throwing us out there for meaningless games and we don't have a true opportunity to get into the playoffs, I'm going to be with my team because I'm a part of the team. But I'm not going to be participating," Lillard told Yahoo! Sports on Tuesday morning. It's hard to blame him, as it is quite easy to see the potential situation from his point of view. There have been countless scenarios tossed around by the league office during the pandemic period, but nothing is set in stone so far. Lillard, for his part, is only interested in returning to action if there exists a legitimate shot for his Blazers to reach the NBA Finals. Fair enough.

    Source: Yahoo! Sports

Fantasy News

  • Dwayne Bacon
    SF, Charlotte Hornets

    Third-year guard Dwayne Bacon, the tenth pick of the second round of the 2017 NBA Draft, did little to improve his game during the 2019-20 season, finishing the year with very underwhelming numbers.

    Bacon has always torn it up in the G League but has never been able to translate his production to the NBA. He averaged just 17.6 minutes in 39 games, his fewest games played in three NBA seasons, although this one got cut short by the on-going coronavirus pandemic. His biggest problem seems to be his shot, as his averages from the floor this year were paltry, at best. After shooting 47.5 percent from the floor in 2018-19, Bacon took a big step back (34.8 percent) this season. He was also pitiful from beyond the arc (28.4 percent) and from the free throw stripe (66.0 percent). It seems unlikely that the Hornets will extend the $2 million qualifying offer lined up for Bacon this offseason, so there's a decent chance he suits up elsewhere in his next NBA appearance.

  • Nicolas Batum
    SG, Charlotte Hornets

    Nicolas Batum played only 22 games during the 2019-20 regular season (the last of which came on January 24), finishing the year ranked outside the top-225 in categories formats.

    The veteran swingman had an injury-riddled campaign, Batum's fifth with the Hornets. He averaged just 3.6 points, 4.5 boards and 3.0 assists in 23.0 minutes per night. A longtime threat from deep, Batum shot 28.6 percent from three, which was also a disappointing development. He only has one year remaining on the gigantic, $120 million deal he inked prior to the 2016-17 season, and the Hornets are probably wishing it wrapped up after this season. They have no use for Batum moving forward, but they owe him $27 million next year. Yikes.

  • Cody Martin
    PF, Charlotte Hornets

    Cody Martin, the sixth pick of the second round of the 2019 NBA draft out of the University of Nevada, showed signs of productivity during his rookie campaign with the Hornets, averaging 5.0 PTS, 3.3 REB, 2.0 AST and 0.8 STL in 18.8 minutes per game (48 games).

    Those per-game numbers actually put him below his twin brother, Caleb (who was not drafted), despite Cody playing in 30 more games. Cody ranked right around 300 in 8 and 9-cat leagues on the season but was playing well to close out the year. He snuck inside the top-230 over the final two weeks prior to the COVID-19 pause, and was a streamable player in March due to his versatility and consistency.

  • Devonte' Graham
    PG, Charlotte Hornets

    Devonte' Graham emerged as the biggest beneficiary of the departure of Kemba Walker, taking over the reins as the starting point guard and finishing the season ranked 55th in 8-cat and 77th 9-cat scoring formats.

    After averaging just 14.7 minutes per game in his rookie season in 2018-19, Graham got thrust into the spotlight in 2019-20, jumping to a playing time of 35.1 minutes per game. The 24-year-old sophomore saw an across-the-board improvement in his stats and became a solid source of threes and dimes for small-ball fantasy lineups. Graham shot just 38.2 percent from the field but ticked other boxes with averages of 18.2 PPG, 3.5 3PG, 7.5 APG and 1.0 SPG. If he can somehow rein in his poor shooting and allow the game to slow down for him, he should be someone to watch come 2020-21.

  • Terry Rozier
    PG, Charlotte Hornets

    Terry Rozier ranked inside the top-75 in both 8 and 9-cat fantasy leagues on a per game basis in 2019-20, his first season with the Hornets after four years with the Celtics.

    Rozier swapped places with longtime fan-favorite and Hornets legend, Kemba Walker. Rozier inked a sign-and-trade for three years, $56.7 million ($18.9 million annually) that included Walker going to the Celtics. Starting all 63 games he played this season, Rozier averaged 18.0 points, 4.4 rebounds, 4.1 assists, 1.0 steals and 2.7 threes per game for an underwhelming Hornets squad (23-42). Fellow backcourt mate Devonte' Graham unexpectedly put up outstanding numbers from the outset, so that put a bit of a damper on Rozier's first season with the team, as the two finished with similar numbers and fantasy rankings. Look for the backcourt tandem of Graham and Rozier to stay together moving forward for the Hornets, at least for next season. They will likely inhibit each other's fantasy ceilings, however.

  • PJ Washington
    PF, Charlotte Hornets

    P.J. Washington was one of bigger pleasant surprises from the rookie class of 2019, making a name for himself with the Hornets as a key player and finishing the season ranked 142/159 in 8/9-cat per-game value and 126/136 in 8/9-cat on total value.

    As a rookie, Washington proved doubters that he was far more NBA-ready than initially projected. A strong Summer League and promising preseason run, translated reasonably well into viable fantasy value. Washington ended up playing 58 games for the Hornets and notched averages of 12.2 PPG, 5.4 RPG, 1.5 3PG, 0.9 SPG and 0.8 BPG in just over 30 minutes per game. Still, Washington's biggest weakness remains his .647 shooting percentage from the free throw line. Overall, he gets solid marks for passing the eye test and flashing some promising impact on the box score on occasion.

  • Cody Zeller
    C, Charlotte Hornets

    Cody Zeller took a step backward during the 2019-20 season, finishing the year ranked 178 in 8-cat and 185 in 9-cat.

    The emergence and immediate productivity of rookie PJ Washington was a key reason for Zeller's rather disappointing year. He played in all but seven of the Hornets' games but had a rough stretch in February that included three straight DNP-CD's to close out the month. Zeller, as one might expect, came back strong after that absence, averaging 11.0 points, 7.2 rebounds, 2.2 assists, 0.8 blocks in five games to close out his 2019-20 campaign. Zeller will be an unrestricted free agent after next season.

  • Caleb Martin
    SG-SF, Charlotte Hornets

    Caleb Martin, twin brother of Cody Martin, closed out the 2019-20 season playing his best basketball of the season for the Hornets after spending the majority of the year in the G League.

    Martin played over 35 minutes in both of the Hornets' final two games in March. He finished inside the top-270 in both 8 and 9-cat leagues and was ranked inside the top-125 during the final two weeks before the season was suspended. In 21.7 minutes per game over the course of those two weeks at the end of February and into March, Martin put up per-game averages of 8.9 PTS, 2.5 REB, 1.8 AST, 0.9 STL, 0.5 BLK and 1.8 3PT. In addition, he went 20-for-37 from beyond the arc (in 18 games played), good for 54 percent. That is a very promising number, albeit in a fairly small sample size, so the Hornets are obviously hoping he can maintain his prowess from deep next season.

  • Malik Monk
    SG, Charlotte Hornets

    Despite the departure of Kemba Walker, Malik Monk remained mostly unimpressive in 2019-20 with averages of 10.3 PPG, 1.1 3PG, 2.9 RPG and 2.1 APG to finish ranked 257/277 in 8/9-cat per-game value.

    Monk logged 55 games for the Hornets this season but could not hold any real momentum, except in February where he was able to string together an eight-game streak of double-digit scoring. His strong run came to a screeching halt when he was suspended indefinitely for violating the league's anti-drug program. Monk was eventually reinstated during the hiatus brought about by the coronavirus.

  • Jalen McDaniels
    PF, Charlotte Hornets

    Jalen McDaniels, who was on the Hornets roster when the league went on pause in March, played only 16 games for the team in 2019-2020, all but two of which came in succession to close out the year.

    The plan all along, per GM Mitch Kupchak prior to the season, was for McDaniels to spend most of the season in the G League with Greensboro. A 6-foot-10, 195 pound power forward out of San Diego State, who was drafted 52nd overall in the 2019 draft, McDaniels played well in limited action (18.3 minutes per game) with the big club. He averaged 5.6 points, 4.1 boards, 0.8 steals and 0.6 3-pointers per game and will look to carve out a role with the Hornets in 2020-21.