Dose: This is the End

The Week Ahead

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Jonas Nader takes a look at some major storylines around the NBA and dives into the latest injury reports …

So this is it folks.  It’s been a great year and though all of us are a bit weary in the legs, before you know it we’ll be longing for October.  I’ve compiled a list of starts and sits, but you’ll want to be plugged into the Rotoworld NBA player news page for all the recent updates.  I’ve also handed out some postseason awards, too. 

I’ll be back later in the week with a year-in-review and we’ll have some postseason coverage to go through, too.  You can click here to follow me on Twitter, where we’ll all watch the playoffs and have some fun.  I’ve yet to finalize my picks for the playoffs, but on a recent radio spot I picked the Clippers over the (you guessed it) Pacers in the Finals.  It’s probably the worst I’ve felt about Finals picks in years.  And on that note, thank you for your eyeballs and your insights as we obsess over a bouncing ball that goes through a circular contraption. 


Start:  Joakim Noah, Jimmy Butler, Mike Dunleavy, D.J. Augustin (if active), Taj Gibson, Kemba Walker, Al Jefferson

Sit:  Carlos Boozer, Gerald Henderson

Notes: Consider Jimmer Fredette in a deep league if Augustin or others cannot go.  The Bulls still have a shot at the No. 3 seed. The same goes for the Bobcats, who are chasing the No. 6 seed and a way to avoid Miami.  The makes Kemba Walker’s upside much too high to pass up on, and Josh McRoberts is worth a look but not a must-start on a busy night. 


Start:  Evan Turner, Luis Scola, Arron Afflalo, Kyle O’Quinn, Victor Oladipo, Tobias Harris

Sit: Paul George (out), Lance Stephenson (out), Roy Hibbert (missing), David West (out), C.J. Watson (out), Jameer Nelson (doubtful)

Notes: George Hill is worth a hard look even in limited minutes knowing that the only reason he’s on the court is to get him going again.  Ian Mahinmi is also worth a look if you need big man stats, and it wouldn’t be surprising to see Donald Sloan put up a low-end line.  Arron Afflalo has talked about finishing strong, while Oladipo may be dealing with an undisclosed injury.  Dewayne Dedmon profiles a lot like Mahinmi tonight.  Maurice Harkless is a safer desperation play than Andrew Nicholson, but if Nicholson went for 18 and eight with not much else I wouldn’t be shocked. 


Start: Mike Conley, Zach Randolph, Marc Gasol, Jose Calderon, Monta Ellis, Dirk Nowitzki, Vince Carter

Sit: No standout sit-recommendations due to silly season.

Notes: This game is for the No. 7 and 8 seeds in the West, and surely both teams will have interest in winning but I can’t see them breaking their necks with older rosters that are also dealing with some nagging injuries.  Conley isn’t close to 100 percent but he has a great matchup. Mike Miller is worth a look if you need some threes after a big Monday night.  Shawn Marion is not an advisable play on a busy night but he’s in the ballpark.  Samuel Dalembert has been playing well but depending on your format he may also disappoint on a night with so many options. 


Start: Andre Drummond, Greg Monroe, Kyle Singler, Russell Westbrook, Reggie Jackson, Kevin Durant, Serge Ibaka, Kendrick Perkins (just seeing if you’re paying attention)

Sit: Brandon Jennings

Notes: Jennings could very well go off but it’s possible Peyton Siva gets a heavy look.  I almost included Rodney Stuckey in the sit list but it’s possible he stays on the floor to keep the game competitive.  Kentavious Caldwell-Pope could also get an extended look, as could Jonas Jerebko since he’s filling Josh Smith’s role.  Thunder players are risky in case they jump out to a big lead, but you’re not benching any of these guys.  Jackson would likely handle the ball in a blowout win. 


Start: Jodie Meeks, Jordan Farmar, Nick Young, Wes Johnson, Jordan Hill

Sit: Tony Parker, Manu Ginobili, Tim Duncan, Danny Green

Notes: I was tempted to include Ryan Kelly in that start list, but he hasn’t been putting up must-start numbers with Nick Young trying to break records.  Young is probably ruining his knee but trying to set himself up for a bigger payday.  Start any Spurs at your own risk.  If Kawhi Leonard didn’t profile better than the old guys I’d have him on the sit list, and he should probably be there anyway.  Patty Mills and Cory Joseph are probably your best bets and Mills has a history of going big on nights like this. 


Start:  Kyle Lowry, DeMar DeRozan (if active), Amir Johnson (if active), Jonas Valanciunas, J.R. Smith, Tim Hardaway, Jr.

Sit: Raymond Felton, Tyson Chandler, Amare Stoudemire

Notes: The Knicks have nothing to play for and may start their vacations early now that a national TV game is out of the way following last night.  Tyson Chandler and Amare Stoudemire are too old for this sh*t.  Shannon Brown and Toure Murry could mop up some minutes as truly desperate plays.  The Raptors need to win this game to stay in the No. 3 seed and they’ll be coming strong, so Raymond Felton is going to have a hard time reproducing last night’s low-end line on a busy night.  Greivis Vasquez will be a must-start player if Kyle Lowry or DeMar DeRozan gets rested.  Tyler Hansbrough double-doubled the last time out and both Amir Johnson and Patrick Patterson have been dealing with injuries. 


Start:  Gordon Hayward, Derrick Favors, Enes Kanter, Alec Burks, Trey Burke, Kevin Love (if active), Ricky Rubio, Gorgui Dieng, null

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