Dose: Klay & Batum banged up
It was a busy Sunday night in the NBA with eight games, lowlighted by a surprise DNP by Klay Thompson, along with ankle and knee issues for Nicolas Batum. Despite Thompson’s absence, I somehow actually cashed in a couple FanDuel tournaments with a big, fat zero from him. Oh what could have been. Check me out on Twitter by clicking here.
Week 3 Games Played
4 Games: ATL, DET, GSW, IND, LAL, NYK, OKC, ORL, SAS, UTA
3 Games: BRK, CHA, CHI, CLE, DAL, DEN, HOU, MEM, MIA, MIL, MIN, NOP, PHX, POR, SAC, TOR
2 Games: BOS, LAC, PHI, WAS
Brooklyn 104, Orlando 96
Bojan Bogdanovic had his coming out party by hitting 9-of-12 shots and two 3-pointers for a career-high 22 points, six rebounds and two steals in the win. He’s not going to shoot it this well every night, but he is starting and will gain confidence from this outing. He should be on everyone’s radar and might be worth a pick up in deeper leagues. He was the standout story for the Nets, but it is nice to see Deron Williams (18 points, seven assists) and Brook Lopez (12 points, 5 boards and 3 blocks) being productive.
Nikola Vucevic was huge again for Magic with 27 points and 12 boards, while Channing Frye, Tobias Harris and Evan Fournier all played well. Fournier had 19 points, five dimes and two 3-pointers on 6-of-9 shooting, and probably should have been in my Waiver Wired column on Sunday. Elfrid Payton was awful (1-of-5, 2 points, 6 assists), and is going to test his owners’ patience with inconsistency.
Utah 97, Detroit 96
Derrick Favors and Enes Kanter double-doubled in the close win and Kanter is doing just enough for you not to drop him. However, despite being taller than anyone on the court, he’s yet to block a shot this season. Gordon Hayward has become Mr. Reliable, while Trey Burke continues to struggle. He was 2-of-8 with seven points and three assists, but don’t forget how good he looked in the preseason. I still have some faith, although Dante Exum (9 points, 5 assists, 21 minutes) is coming on.
Brandon Jennings scored a season-high 23 and is playing well again, Greg Monroe stayed hot in the starting lineup with 19 & 11, and Andre Drummond is showing signs of life after 11 points, a season-high 18 boards, a steal and a block. Jennings fumbled the final possession last night, likely costing his team the game, but that doesn’t matter in fantasyland.
OKC 101, Sacramento 93
Reggie Jackson was solid again with 22 points and six dimes, but hit just 6-of-19 shots. He’s a must-start as long as Russell Westbrook is out. Jeremy Lamb was rock solid again with 17 points, nine boards, four assists and two 3-pointers, and should be picked up in all leagues, and Serge Ibaka racked up 14 points, nine boards and four blocks in the win. Sebastian Telfair was also nice with 14 points in just 17 minutes. Steven Adams had a tough night with four points, five rebounds and five fouls, but had been playing better coming in.
The Kings got 23 points, 10 rebounds, six assists, two steals and a 3-pointer from Rudy Gay, and he could be ready to go on a hot run. DeMarcus Cousins had some foul trouble but still had 16 points, seven boards, four steals and two blocks, and Darren Collison was nice again with a full stat line. Ben McLemore hit 6-of-9 shots and four 3-pointers for 16 points, and is worth a close eye going forward. Cousins’ thumb injury looked fine last night.
Toronto 120, Philly 88
Amir Johnson played just 18 minutes for five points and three boards while dealing with a sore ankle. Hopefully the injury is almost behind him and he’s ready to get back on track. Terrence Ross came through with 17 points, five boards, two steals, two blocks and four 3-pointers, which was a nice follow-up to his 18-point night on Friday. Grab him if he’s available. DeMar DeRozan scored 24 and filled up the stat sheet, while Kyle Lowry was quite pedestrian against the league’s worst team. He’ll be fine. Lou Williams scored a season-high 16 points in 18 minutes off the bench, and is probably worth keeping an eye on in case he stays hot. But Ross would have to really stumble for him to be worth a flier in most leagues, and Ross is on fire.
Tony Wroten was money again with 18 points, three boards, five assists, a steal and a 3-pointer, and is must-start material until further notice. Henry Sims is officially back on track after going for 12 points and eight boards in 29 minutes, but the other three Philly starters scored a total of 14 points. Chris Johnson had 16, Alexey Shved had 14 and K.J. McDaniels scored 11 off the bench. Brandon Davies struggled, hitting just 1-of-6 shots (a 3-pointer) for three points, but did add seven rebounds, three assists, a steal and five turnovers. Nerlens Noel was out again with an ankle injury and is targeting a return on Thursday. He could hurt Sims and Davies upon his return, but Sims does look much better now that he did a week ago.
Miami 105, Dallas 96
The Heat are now 5-2 after taking down Dallas last night. Luol Deng finally blew up for a season-high 30 points, five boards, four assists and four 3-pointers, and it’s time to get him in your starting lineup. Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade both had 20 & 10, with Bosh getting his 10 in boards and Wade getting his in dimes. Mario Chalmers went off for 18 points and three 3-pointers on 6-of-9 shooting, while Norris Cole bottomed out with zero points and three assists in just 14 minutes. Shabazz Napier is being given an open door from Cole to steal his job, but missed all four of his shots for zero points and one assist in 26 minutes. Maybe Chalmers is ready to reclaim the starting point guard job for the Heat. Shawne Williams played just 19 minutes and had seven points. Josh McRoberts had four points, eight boards and a block in 17 minutes and could be ready to take Williams’ job.
Monta Ellis led the way for Dallas with 23 points, five assists and two 3-pointers and is having a nice season. Dirk Nowitzki had 17, Tyson Chandler racked up 16 points, 15 boards and a block with 10 offensive boards, and Jae Crowder got hot off the bench with 15 points and two 3-pointers on 5-of-6 shooting in just 12 minutes. Obviously, he needs more minutes before he should be on the fantasy radar. Chandler Parsons was awful, hitting just 1-of-9 shots for four points, but he did have two steals and three blocks. He’s now 2-of-20 over his last two games, but should get it worked out sooner than later.
Phoenix 107, Golden State 95
The Warriors are no longer undefeated after this loss as Isaiah Thomas and Gerald Green led the Suns off the bench. IT2 hit just 4-of-13 shots but hit a 3-pointer and 14-of-15 free throws for 22 points and seven assists, while Green hit 6-of-12 shots and four 3-pointers for 19 points. He’s as hit-or-miss as they come, and did his damage in just 19 minutes tonight. You can’t start him with confidence, but if you catch him on the right night, he can be fun to own. Goran Dragic finally broke out of his funk with 19 points, three assists and three 3-pointers on 8-of-12 shooting, meaning now is a good time to unload him if you’ve had enough apathy. Marcus Morris outplayed Markieff Morris last night and I like the idea of owning both twins, and using them in daily play, as well. Eric Bledsoe was the odd man out tonight with IT2 and Dragic ballin’, and had just nine points, three assists and not much else on 2-of-6 shooting. That three-headed point guard is going to be messy all year.
As I mentioned, Klay Thompson was a late scratch with a sprained hand, missing his first game of his career. The injury doesn’t sound serious and as of now, I’m starting him in weekly leagues. He’s expected to practice on Wednesday. Leandro Barbosa started in his place and had 12 points and two 3-pointers in 31 minutes, but he’ll go back to the bench when Thompson comes back. Stephen Curry was a beast with 28 points, 10 assists, five steals and four 3-pointers, but also committed 10 turnovers for a dubious triple-double. Draymond Green started for injured David Lee again and had 22 points, nine boards, a steal, four blocks and three 3-pointers. He should be owned in all leagues and my guess is he continues to start over Lee when he comes back from his hamstring injury. Andre Iguodala was useless in his 31 minutes off the bench and I’m just thankful I didn’t draft him anywhere.
Portland 116, Denver 100
As usual, all five Blazer starters scored in double figures, led by LaMarcus Aldridge (season-high 28 & 9) and Wesley Matthews (21 points, 6 rebounds, 3 assists, a steal, a block and 5 3-pointers). Nicolas Batum and Damian Lillard were a little quiet, but still productive, and Chris Kaman racked up 12 points, eight boards and a season-high five blocks off the bench. It’s nice to finally have a Blazers’ bench player be an option in fantasy leagues, although Kaman is far from a must-own, must-start player. But he was great in just 19 minutes last night. Batum tweaked his ankle at the end of the game and it could be an issue this week. He’s also dealing with a bruised knee, and owners will definitely want to watch for updates on Monday. The Blazers play on Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday, which is better than him having a game on Monday night, I guess.
Kenneth Faried showed signs of life with 18 points, seven rebounds and three blocks, which was his best game since he went off for 22 & 17 on opening night. He had scored 10 or fewer points in his previous four games, which was a painful stretch. Hopefully this line will get him going. Ty Lawson graced us with his presence and played well with 18 points, six boards, eight dimes and two steals, despite his ankle injury. Maybe he’s turning the corner. Arron Afflalo also bounce back with a season-high 18 points and a 3-pointer on 8-of-14 shooting after scoring a total of two points in his previous two games. Timofey Mozgov went off for seven points, a season-high 16 rebounds and three blocks, despite hitting just 3-of-10 shots. I’m hanging in there with him. Danilo Gallinari didn’t make a shot and just doesn’t look right. Bench him until he figures it out. Additionally, the return of Lawson ruined Randy Foye, who had nine points, one assist and two 3-pointers in just 18 minutes.
Lakers 107, Charlotte 92
Break up the Lakers! They finally won a game. Jeremy Lin caught fire in the second half and finished with a season-high 21 points, seven assists and three 3-pointers on 8-of-12 shooting, while Kobe Bryant also scored 21. Of course, he hit just 7-of-20 shots and his field goal percentage is currently crushing owners. He’s at 40 percent shooting on the season and doesn’t look like his legs are under him. Hopefully Kobe continues to feel better and stops coming up short on his jumpers. Carlos Boozer is playing better and had 16 points and five rebounds, while Ed Davis came off the bench to hit all five of his shots for 10 points, five boards and a block in 22 minutes. Jordan Hill was solid again with 12 points, six rebounds and seven assists, but didn’t block a shot tonight. Wes Johnson struggled again despite 35 minutes of action. He hit just 2-of-6 shots and a 3-pointer for five points and three rebounds. I’m dropping him where I own him, if I can find a hot free agent to pick up.
That hot Michael Kidd-Gilchrist run we witnessed early is a distant memory now, as he hit 1-of-4 shots for three points and not much else. Al Jefferson led the way with 23 points and eight boards, but didn’t block a shot, and Kemba Walker had 17 points, three rebounds, four assists and two steals, but didn’t hit a 3-pointer on 7-of-11 shooting. Lance Stephenson scored just six points, but added 10 rebounds and five assists, despite hitting just 3-of-12 shots. Luckily, he’s filling up the stat sheet on most nights, even though his offense has been shaky at best thus far, and he’s shooting just 30 percent on the season. Gary Neal chipped in with 14 points off the bench in 24 minutes, but didn’t do much else, other than trip up MKG. He looks like a daily-league flier, but not someone I really trust to throw in a weekly lineup.