Basketball Pickups: Norman Powell shines again

The days of the Los Angeles Clippers having to worry about playing back-to-back afternoon games should end next season when the franchise moves into the Intuit Dome in Inglewood. Based on how Tyronn Lue handled the rotation for Sunday's game against Milwaukee and his words before the game, no one within the organization is a fan of this setup. Due to Sunday's contest being the second in as many days, Paul George and Kawhi Leonard were held out. While this led to players either on the rotation's fringes or entirely out (hello, P.J. Tucker), two "usual suspects" popped up on the fantasy radar.

Norman Powell (49% rostered, Yahoo) has been a worthwhile streamer in standard leagues whenever George or Leonard sits and tends to be rostered in deep leagues, at a minimum. Despite briefly headed to the back during the second quarter after Tucker inadvertently stepped on his foot, Powell (who was sitting on the bench at the time of that injury) scored 20 points after halftime and finished the defeat with 26 points, seven rebounds, two assists, one steal, and three 3-pointers. Imagine what the stat line would look like if he didn't shoot 3-of-14 from beyond the arc.

The other player who came through for the managers who decided to stream him was Amir Coffey (2%), who (along with Tucker) was tabbed to fill the voids left by George and Leonard. Coffey finished with 16 points, 10 rebounds, four assists, one block, and four 3-pointers, shooting 6-of-11 from the field. While he hasn't been a reliable streamer in the past, this was a spot where rolling the dice on Coffey was understandable, and the gamble paid off for the few managers who decided to partake.

Let's look at a few of Sunday's top pickups:

Amen Thompson (38%) and Cam Whitmore (15%)

Thompson and Whitmore already had "silly season" value, but the injury suffered by Alperen Sengun could give both rookies a boost. Sengun will undergo an MRI on his right knee and right ankle on Monday after he landed awkwardly after attempting to block a Domantas Sabonis layup attempt during the fourth quarter of Houston's win in Sacramento. Neither Thompson (13 points, five rebounds, and one 3-pointer) nor Whitmore (10 points, four rebounds, and two 3-pointers) qualifies as a center, but their offense would be needed if Sengun misses time. Deep-league managers needing a center can add Jock Landale (< 1%) to their watch lists, but even that may be doing too much.

Corey Kispert (16%) and Bilal Coulibaly (7%)

Washington pulled off one of the more surprising results of the season as they held off the Heat in Miami. Kispert, who moved into the starting lineup due to Marvin Bagley III (back) and Richaun Holmes (toe) being sidelined, produced a line of 22 points, five rebounds, six assists, and five 3-pointers in 39 minutes. As for Coulibaly, the rookie tallied a full line, finishing with 11 points, four rebounds, one assist, two steals, two blocks, and three 3-pointers in 36 minutes. Coulibaly did appear to tweak his ankle during Sunday's win but played through it. Regardless of what happens with Bagley and Holmes, Kispert and Coulibaly should continue to log heavy minutes as the Wizards play out the string.

GG Jackson (15%)

Speaking of playing out the string, the Grizzlies are doing the same. A once-again loaded injury report led to Jackson and Jake LaRavia (17%) moving into the starting lineup, and both were productive in a blowout loss to the Thunder. Jackson scored a season-high 30 points with six rebounds, three assists, one block, and one 3-pointer, while LaRavia (13/1/4/2 with two 3-pointers) recorded a solid stat line in just 24 minutes. Jackson ultimately played 38 minutes, but the game being a blowout had much to do with that. Either way, give the rookie credit for taking advantage of his opportunity, and he'll have value in deeper leagues down the stretch.

Nickeil Alexander-Walker (5%)

Alexander-Walker and Naz Reid replaced Kyle Anderson and Rudy Gobert in the Timberwolves' starting lineup for Sunday's game against the Lakers. While the latter scored 21 first-half points, the former finished with 15 points, seven rebounds, five assists, two steals, and three 3-pointers in 39 minutes. Alexander-Walker's value moving forward depends on the availability of Kyle Anderson, who was held out of Sunday's game with a right shoulder injury.

Cason Wallace (3%)

Wallace wasn't a worthwhile fantasy add before Sunday's games, but Jalen Williams' sprained ankle likely changes the equation. JDub injured his ankle during the first half, with Wallace replacing him in the lineup to begin the third quarter. Shooting 6-of-10 from the field, he scored 14 points with one rebound, two assists, and two 3-pointers in 16 second-half minutes. Yes, most of Wallace's damage was done after the outcome was no longer in doubt, but he could pick up a few starts if Williams misses time.