Mavs/Nets trade boosts Josh Green... for now
Sunday's NBA schedule consisted of six games, but the biggest news came off the court. Brooklyn found a suitable trade partner for Kyrie Irving, sending the guard and Markieff Morris to Dallas in exchange for Spencer Dinwiddie, Dorian Finney-Smith, an unprotected 2029 first-round pick, and second-round picks in 2027 and 2029. Since the trade won't become official until the involved players pass their respective physicals, there will be some holes to fill in the Mavericks and Nets rotations in the short term. And that's where we'll begin today's Pickups of the Day Column.
Pickups of the day
Josh Green (5%)
Filling in for the injured Luka Dončić, Green shot 5-of-12 from the field in Saturday's loss to the Warriors, finishing with 12 points, one rebound, four assists, and one steal in 27 minutes. With Doncic not joining the team in Salt Lake City for Monday's game against the Jazz and Irving not available, Green will play a lot. The possible return of Christian Wood (thumb; questionable) will help the Mavericks, but the lack of available point guards could put Green in a position where he's asked to do a bit more offensively. McKinley Wright IV and Jaden Hardy will also be in a position to play more on Monday. With it being reported that Irving's expected to be available for Wednesday's game against the Clippers, and Doncic could be back by then as well, fantasy managers will likely get one more good run out of Green.
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Cam Thomas (32%) and Edmond Sumner (8%)
Not only will the Nets be without Dinwiddie and Finney-Smith for Monday's game against the Clippers, but Seth Curry (adductor) joined Kevin Durant (knee) on the list of injured players. Those absences make Thomas and Sumner must-adds, even if Ben Simmons (knee; questionable) is cleared to play. Sumner started Saturday's win over the Wizards and scored a career-high 29 points, while Thomas established a new career-high of his own with 44 points. Brooklyn's schedule also benefits both players in the short term, as they'll host the Suns on Tuesday. So even if Simmons and T.J. Warren (shin; probable) are cleared to play Monday night, there's a chance that they won't be available Tuesday. We'll see if Dinwiddie and DFS are available by then, but this is a good opportunity for fantasy managers to get two credible games out of a streamer instead of one.
Chris Boucher (33%)
Boucher may be a bit undervalued right now in that he's providing top-100 value in 9-cat formats over the last two weeks. He finished Sunday's win over the Grizzlies with 17 points, 10 rebounds, one assist, and three 3-pointers in 27 minutes, shooting 7-of-10 from the field. While Thaddeus Young (14/4/4/2 with one 3-pointer in 25 minutes) also played well coming off the bench, Boucher is the better fantasy option by a significant distance. Toronto doesn't play again until Wednesday night against the Spurs, which means that the return from adding Boucher after Sunday's performance will be limited. The same can be said for Young, who's rostered in just one percent of Yahoo leagues.
Santi Aldama (18%)
Tyus Jones (37%) was all the rage once it was announced that Ja Morant would not play on Sunday, and rightfully so, given how he's performed most nights when given the chance to start. But Aldama rewarded fantasy managers as he finished the loss to Toronto with 15 points, six rebounds, four assists, two blocks, and two 3-pointers in 32 minutes. Aldama remained in the starting lineup due to Dillon Brooks serving a one-game suspension for hitting Donovan Mitchell in the groin on Thursday. Brooks will be available for Tuesday's game against the Bulls, and Jones could be as well, which would cut into Aldama's and Jones' fantasy value.
Isaac Okoro (5%)
Okoro has been a fixture in the Cavaliers' starting lineup since the team's second game of 2023, and he produced his best offensive performance of the season in Sunday's win over the Pacers. Shooting 7-of-9 from the field and 3-of-3 from the foul line, Okoro scored a season-high 20 points with three rebounds, three assists, two steals, and three 3-pointers. Okoro is providing 11th-round value in 9-cat formats over the last two weeks, and with Mitchell playing through a leg injury, any impact he can have offensively would be welcome. And this could be a good time to add Okoro, as the Cavaliers play the first of their four Week 17 games Monday night against the Wizards. That game completes the first of two back-to-backs Cleveland will play over the next seven days.
Willy Hernangomez (1%)
Larry Nance (45%) was tabbed to replace Jonas Valančiūnas (knee) in the starting lineup for Sunday's game against the Kings, but it was Hernangomez who had the big day offensively. Playing 28 minutes off the bench, Hernangomez went off for 22 points, 16 rebounds, four assists, and one blocked shot. Is he worth adding, no questions asked, in the aftermath of this performance? Probably not, as the matchup has largely dictated Hernangomez's role/playing time this season. And with the Pelicans playing just two games in Week 17, there's even less reason to entertain the thought of adding Hernangomez.
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