Richaun Holmes dominates Charlotte

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Friday's nine-game slate offered up some serious blowouts, but there were also games that either went down to the wire or required a massive comeback. Among the standouts was a fantasy favorite who posted the first 20/20 game of his career, and a Raptors guard who established a new career-high in steals.

Nets 96, Pistons 90

So, at what point should fantasy managers be concerned about James Harden? Having averaged at least 24.6 points per game ten consecutive seasons, The Beard has gotten off to a very slow start this season. Friday night he did post a triple-double, tallying 13 points, 10 rebounds, 10 assists, two steals, one blocked shot and three 3-pointers. But Harden shot just 3-of-10 from the field and 4-of-4 from the foul line, while also committing a season-high nine turnovers. While he is a top-25 player in 9-cat formats thus far per Basketball Monster, that isn't what the fantasy managers who drafted Harden signed up for in the preseason (Yahoo ADP: 5).

With Kyrie Irving (personal) sidelined, the expectation was that we'd see a Harden closer to what he was while in Houston. That hasn't happened, and it's fair to question whether or not the league's officiating changes (not allowing offensive players to get away with unnatural shooting motions, especially) have impacted Harden more than most. He entered Friday averaging 4.8 free throw attempts per game, his lowest since the 2010-11 season. Fantasy managers will still have a hard time buying low on Harden, but this is certainly a situation to track if he isn't on your roster.

Kevin Durant (29/10/5/0/1 with two 3-pointers) keeps plugging along, while Blake Griffin (13/5/3/1 with one 3-pointer) and LaMarcus Aldridge (16 points, five rebounds and one blocked shot) both had solid nights in the post. Aldridge is the better option of the two, a big worth rostering for as long as Nicolas Claxton (illness) remains sidelined.

The big news for Detroit is that Cade Cunningham played in both ends of a back-to-back for the first time in his young career. While the overall field goal percentage (6-of-17) and turnover count (six) left something to be desired, the rookie did knock down three 3-pointers and finish with 17 points, four rebounds, two assists and one steal in 30 minutes. Cunningham's perimeter shooting will come around, and he does enough in other areas to be well worth the risk (as far as having him in your active lineups), even if your fantasy team's field goal percentage will take a hit in the short-term.

Isaiah Stewart (eight points, nine rebounds) was limited to 23 minutes due to foul trouble, but he did account for one steal and three blocks while on the court. While "Beef Stew" hasn't been as productive as many managers hoped he'd be before the season began, he's providing 11th-round value in 9-cat. Hang onto him if you have him. Kelly Olynyk (14/10/2/1/1 with two 3-pointers in 25 minutes) had a good night, and a case can be made for him needing to be rostered in standard leagues due to Stewart's production.

Saddiq Bey shot just 5-of-13 from the field, but he supplemented his 13 points with one rebound, three assists and a career-high four steals. He's averaging 1.1 steals per game, and continued production on that end would be welcome, given his slow offensive start.

Spurs 102, Magic 89

The absence of Jakob Poeltl (health and safety protocols) hasn't done much for Drew Eubanks' fantasy value. He played 22 minutes and finished with five points, four rebounds, two assists, two steals and one blocked shot. What is has done is give Thaddeus Young a welcome boost, as he's now in the rotation. Young backed up Eubanks in this one, playing 26 minutes and recording a line of 12 points, four rebounds, five assists, two steals and three blocked shots. Rostered in 38% of Yahoo leagues, Young is a player who should be rostered for as long as Poeltl remains sidelined.

Dejounte Murray (20/11/7/3/1 with one 3-pointer) and Derrick White (12/10/4/0/1 with two 3-pointers) remain San Antonio's most consistent fantasy options, while Keldon Johnson (20/9/2/1) had one of his better outings of the season. Johnson isn't even a top-200 player right now, a disappointment given the preseason expectations. But he'll continue to play plenty, so I'd hang onto him in most leagues. In the Spurs' last two games, Johnson has accounted for 36 points, 15 rebounds, three assists and two steals. And Devin Vassell (12/2/1/3/1 with one 3-pointer in 26 minutes) should be rostered in more than 26% of Yahoo leagues, even though he's still coming off the bench.

With regard to Orlando, the minutes between Franz Wagner (7/3/4/1/1 with one 3-pointer) and Chuma Okeke (8/4/2/1/2) should be monitored. Wagner played 29 minutes Friday night, and he's been in a mini-slump since scoring 28 in Monday's win over the Timberwolves. Okeke hasn't offered much in the way of offensive production since returning from a knee injury, scoring no more than eight points in any of his appearances. While Wagner is certainly a player who should be rostered in most leagues, Okeke is not. And he could be in even more trouble once Jonathan Isaac (knee) is cleared to play. When that time will come, who knows, but there isn't much need to have Okeke rostered in most leagues.

Wizards 115, Grizzlies 87

Moving back to the bench hasn't changed anything for Montrezl Harrell (18/8/0/1/1), who continues to produce. He's already rostered in 86% of Yahoo leagues, so most managers will have a hard time picking him up. The question regarding Harrell: should managers who have him rostered entertain the possibility of selling high? I'd hold onto him, as Harrell has center eligibility, and finding multiple fives who are consistently productive can be a bit difficult. Starter Daniel Gafford (15/4/3/0/2) also had a good night, shooting 7-of-8 from the field and playing 23 minutes. Harrell (25 minutes) had the slight edge in playing time Friday, and it feels like an even split in that regard is to be expected moving forward.

Even better for Washington was that they were able to get Bradley Beal (17/3/7 in 27 minutes) some additional rest, as he did not play at all in the fourth quarter. Sunday's matchup with the Bucks could be a difficult one, as Jrue Holiday is back for Milwaukee. But Beal entered Friday on a run of four straight games with at least 24 points. That being said, the extra rest may pay dividends for Beal, as he played 32 minutes or more in seven straight games.

For the Grizzlies, this game was a dud no matter who you have rostered. Jaren Jackson Jr. (13/9/2/1/2 with one 3-pointer) gave managers some defensive production, but he did so while shooting 4-of-14 from the field. Ja Morant (11/6/4) was 4-of-17, while Desmond Bane (10 points, one 3-pointer) provided managers with no stats outside of the points and 3-pointers. Given how well he's played to start the season, that was a disappointing line for the second-year guard. De'Anthony Melton (4/2/1/1/1) filled the stat sheet, but shot 2-of-9 from the field. Memphis is off until Monday, and that matchup with the Timberwolves stands to be a bit more forgiving as far as fantasy production is concerned.

Cavaliers 102, Raptors 101

It may be time to have the "should Cedi Osman be streamed" conversation, as he has scored 12 points or more in each of the last four games. With Lauri Markkanen and Kevin Love both sidelined due to health and safety protocols, Osman is now in the rotation. He finished Friday's win with a line of 17 points, two rebounds, two assists, one block and five 3-pointers in 26 minutes off the bench. Over the last four, Osman is averaging 15.5 points, 2.0 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 4.8 3-pointers per game. Cleveland visits the Knicks on Sunday and Osman, who's rostered in just 5% of Yahoo leagues, is worth a look if you're in need of a points/3-pointers forward. The fact that he isn't all that productive in other categories is what makes him a tough sell in more competitive leagues.

Dean Wade (8/5/2/1) filled in for Markkanen in the starting lineup, but is not worth considering in any fantasy league. Darius Garland (21/1/8/1 with two 3-pointers) shot 8-of-12 from the field, while Jarrett Allen (16/15/0/2/1 with one 3-pointer) and Evan Mobley (18/5/2/0/1) both had solid nights at the office. That's why Cleveland was able to come back and win in spite of Collin Sexton (9/5/2/1 with one 3-pointer) shooting 4-of-17 from the field.

Flipping over to Toronto, if the wheels hadn't already fallen off of the Chris Boucher bandwagon, they likely have now. A mid-round favorite amongst many managers at draft time, he isn't even a top-200 player right now. Boucher played just seven minutes in this one, scoring one point and grabbing one rebound. While neither Precious Achiuwa (five points, eight rebounds in 18 minutes) nor Khem Birch (4/8/2/0/2 in 30 minutes) has offered much in the way of fantasy value, both are better choices than Boucher. And that isn't saying a great deal, as Birch is ranked just inside of the top-200, and Achiuwa the top-300.

Gary Trent Jr. (17/2/1/6/2) accumulated a career-high six steals on the night, and with the two rejections he had a big night in fantasy. Ranked just outside of the top-25 in 9-cat, GTJ should be rostered in more than 76% of Yahoo leagues. OG Anunoby (23/6/5/1/1 with three 3-pointers) continues to flourish in his expanded role, while Fred VanVleet (18/6/6/1 with four 3-pointers) and Scottie Barnes (14/9/4/0/2) continue to provide top-100 value.

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Knicks 113, Bucks 98

After trailing by as much as 21 points in the first half, the Knicks mounted a comeback and ultimately coasted to the win. And Derrick Rose was the catalyst, posting a line of 23 points, eight rebounds, four assists, two steals and two 3-pointers in 30 minutes. Kemba Walker (5/1/1 with one 3-pointer) remains the starter, but he played just 15 minutes and was largely ineffective when on the court. While he remains the higher-rated player in 9-cat formats, Walker's had a couple difficult games this week. He's certainly worth holding onto, with the hope that Walker can bounce back on Sunday when the Knicks host the Cavaliers. Rose is rostered in 44% of Yahoo leagues, which is a bit low for a point guard who's ranked just outside of the top-100 (104th, to be exact).

Julius Randle (32/12/4/0/2 with three 3-pointers) and RJ Barrett (20/7/3 with two 3-pointers) did most fo the heavy lifting for the starters, and backup center Nerlens Noel's line is certainly worth noting. In 24 minutes off the bench, he put up six points, 13 rebounds, three steals and one blocked shot. Noel, who is rostered in 55% of Yahoo leagues, has managed to put up top-100 numbers as a backup in the past. So long as he can stay healthy, that should once again be the case this season. Mitchell Robinson (4/6/1/2 in 21 minutes) didn't have his best night, but his status as the starter makes him a player who should be rostered in all leagues.

Milwaukee remains shorthanded but did welcome back one key contributor Friday, as Jrue Holiday (10/4/3 with one 3-pointer and five turnovers) was in the rotation after missing the prior five games due to an ankle injury and an illness. Holiday, who played 20 minutes, came off the bench and looked a bit rusty (as one would expect). Whether its Holiday or George Hill (6/2/4/1 with two 3-pointers in 25 minutes) who starts Sunday's game against the Wizards has yet to be determined. That's the first of five consecutive games that Milwaukee will play on the road, a trip that includes a back-to-back on Tuesday/Wednesday (Philadelphia and New York).

And it's time for holdouts to hop onto the Grayson Allen bandwagon, as he's providing 5th round value in 9-cat thus far. Shooting 8-of-12 from the field, he put up 22 points, five rebounds, two assists, one steal, one block and six 3-pointers in 31 minutes. So long as Khris Middleton (health and safety protocols) remains sidelined, Allen will have opportunities to do more within the Bucks offense. No way should he be rostered in just 40% of Yahoo leagues. Giannis Antetokounmpo (25/7/4/2 with two 3-pointers) was the only other Bucks starter in double figures.

Clippers 104, Timberwolves 84

The Knicks weren't the only team to erase a deficit of at least 20 points on Friday. The Clippers pulled off the same feat, despite Paul George (21/11/6/3) shooting 4-of-20 from the field and Eric Bledsoe (9/5/4/3) going 2-of-13. George, who also turned the ball over six times, was able to salvage something for fantasy managers with the rebounds, assists and steals, and the same can be said for Bledsoe. However I'm a bit concerned about Bledsoe, who has been quiet since getting off to a good start to this season. Bledsoe is still rostered in 31% of Yahoo leagues, and there's little reason to hold onto him in shallow formats. The question now is whether or not he can turn things around in time to avoid being a droppable player in standard leagues.

Nicolas Batum (12/8/1/1 with two 3-pointers) and Ivica Zubac (14/14/0/2/1) both performed well in the frontcourt, and the former is currently providing sixth-round value in 9-cat formats. Batum should be rostered in more than 35% of Yahoo leagues, as he currently is. Zubac, who's rostered percentage is 56%, has been nowhere near as productive. If you already have Zubac it won't hurt to hold onto him, but he isn't a player that managers who don't have him need to rush to pick up. Also, the trip to Minneapolis may have been just what the doctor ordered for Reggie Jackson (20/4/4 with two 3-pointers). In two games against the Timberwolves, he posted totals of 49 points, nine rebounds, 12 assists, one steal and nine 3-pointers. Jackson still isn't a top-100 player, but the usage made him a player worth waiting on. And those who exercised patience were rewarded.

With D'Angelo Russell (ankle) once again sidelined, Patrick Beverley got another start against his former team. This outing did not go as well as Wednesday's, as the veteran guard put up five points, four rebounds, three assists and one 3-pointer in 27 minutes before fouling out. Beverley is worth streaming so long as Russell remains out, as he is providing top-100 value in 9-cat formats. Beverley has hit double figures in just two of the six games that he's played in, averaging 7.7 points, 4.7 rebounds, 5.2 assists, 0.7 steals, 0.8 blocks and 1.5 3-pointers per game. So long as the assists and defensive production are there, Beverley can be a suitable fill-in option for fantasy managers. But those who roster the veteran run the risk of him putting up a performance like the one he had Friday night.

Malik Beasley, who appeared to be in line to do more creating with Russell sidelined, knocked down six 3-pointers but supplemented his 18 points with just one rebound, one assist and one steal. Rostered in 33% of Yahoo leagues, he's scored 11 or more in four straight games coming off the bench. Beasley is certainly worth a look with Russell sidelined, but that may all change if he is back in the lineup Monday when the Timberwolves take on Memphis. Karl-Anthony Towns (20/8/0/1 with three 3-pointers) and Anthony Edwards (17/1/3/2/3 with three 3-pointers) did most of the work offensively, but the former turned the ball over six times. Towns is averaging 4.3 turnovers per game, yet he is still a top-5 player in 9-cat thus far.

Lastly Jaden McDaniels (5/2/1/0/1 with one 3-pointer), who played just 13 minutes before fouling out, is a player worth dropping if there's a more valuable option on your league's waiver wire. He's yet to hit double figures in points, and has picked up four fouls or more in each of Minnesota's last five games.

Warriors 126, Pelicans 85

If the Pelicans were told before this game that they'd hold Stephen Curry to 19 points, they would probably like their chances of picking up the win. Instead New Orleans found itself on the wrong end of a 41-point loss, thanks in large part to the play of Jordan Poole. One of the most improved players in the league thus far, he put up 26 points, one assist and six 3-pointers in 28 minutes. Poole shot 10-of-15 from the field, so fantasy managers will definitely take the field goal percentage as well. It's just unfortunate that Poole, who is providing sixth-round value in 9-cat formats, did not accumulate any stats in other areas.

For the season he's averaging 17.6 points, 2.4 rebounds, 3.3 assists, 1.4 steals, 0.4 blocks and 2.8 3-pointers per game, which is nothing to scoff at. That being said, if Poole can be consistently productive in some of those other statistical categories, he's capable of making a run at the top-50 before Klay Thompson returns. At that point he's likely to slip some, but not to where Poole would be considered a player that needed to be dropped immediately. In addition to his 19 points, Curry accounted for three rebounds, six assists, two blocks and five 3-pointers, with Andrew Wiggins (16 points, three rebounds and one 3-pointer), Gary Payton II (17/6/3/1 with one 3-pointer) and Nemanja Bjelica (13/7/3/2/1 with three 3-pointers) also scoring in double figures.

Payton has posted solid lines in back-to-back games, and he's worth tracking in the short-term. If he extends the run to three on Sunday against the Rockets, that's when deep league managers should look to pick him up.

New Orleans went with the same starting lineup for a second consecutive games, with Garrett Temple occupying the spot previously held by Brandon Ingram (and then Herbert Jones). Temple did not offer much production-wise, finishing with five points, three rebounds, three assists and one 3-pointer in 26 minutes. He isn't worthy of consideration as a streaming option, regardless of league. Outside of Jonas Valanciunas (20/15/4 with one 3-pointer) putting up a double-double and Josh Hart (10/9/2/1 with one 3-pointer) finishing one block shy of a full line, there wasn't much to write home about regarding the Pelicans.

Something to keep an eye on moving forward: Jaxson Hayes was a DNP-CD, after playing just four minutes in Wednesday's loss to the Kings. He's been jumped in the rotation by Willy Hernangomez, but Willie Green has been more willing to go with a smaller lineup when the aforementioned Valanciunas is resting. Hayes is rostered in only 2% of Yahoo leagues, which sounds right given the lack of production.

Trail Blazers 110, Pacers 106

After struggling to begin the season, Robert Covington had the breakout performance that many fantasy managers have been waiting for. He shot 7-of-12 from the field, scoring 19 points with five rebounds, one steal and five 3-pointers in 34 minutes. While the defensive stats weren't there, that's fine considering the slump that Covington was in. He entered Friday shooting 37.1% from the field, averaging 4.8 points, 5.3 rebounds, 0.5 assists, 1.1 steals, 0.5 blocks and 1.5 3-pointers per game. Covington, who's rostered in 74% of Yahoo leagues, is more than capable of providing consistent fantasy value. Hopefully he'll be able to build on Friday's performance.

C.J. McCollum (27/5/6 with five 3-pointers), Norman Powell (25/2/2/2/1 with three 3-pointers) and Anfernee Simons (16/1/1/0/1 with four 3-pointers) all shot the ball well, which was great news for Portland due to the struggles of Damian Lillard. He shot 2-of-13 on the night, finishing with four points, four rebounds, 11 assists, one steal and one blocked shot. Lillard has struggled with his shot, making just 35.3% from the field entering Friday. His scoring average of 19.5 points per game is the lowest that it's been since Lillard's rookie season. Given his track record, fantasy managers are likely to exercise patience when it comes to Lillard. And they should. But it's likely getting a little easier for some managers to accept a trade offer that they can't refuse.

Indiana made a change to its starting lineup, with T.J. McConnell filling in for the injured Malcolm Brogdon (illness). And he made the most of his opportunity, posting a line of 19 points, seven rebounds, two assists, two steals, one block and three 3-pointers in 33 minutes. McConnell, who was a top-100 player last season, is still rostered in 50% of Yahoo leagues. If Brogdon has to sit out Sunday's game against the Kings, McConnell would get another start. But now may be the time for managers who have McConnell to see if they can possibly get a player back in return.

Jeremy Lamb sitting due to a sprained left ankle ensured that Justin Holiday's minutes would increase and they did, jumping from 23 in Wednesday's win over the Knicks to 30 Friday night. Holiday, who's rostered in 26% of Yahoo leagues, accounted for 12 points, four rebounds, three assists, one steal and four 3-pointers. Holiday is more of a streaming candidate, with his value being at its highest when the Pacers are down a more offensively-inclined wing.

Kings 140, Hornets 110

What a night for Sacramento, which set the franchise record for made 3-pointers in a game (22) while blowing out the Hornets. Richaun Holmes (23/20/2) recorded the first 20/20 game of his career, while De'Aaron Fox (21/3/9/1) continues to shake out of the slump that he began the season in. Through two games this month Fox has been much better than he was in the first seven games, shooting 15-of-29 from the field over the last two. Fox is, based upon his career splits, usually a slow starter. And that's why fantasy managers should have exercised caution, lest they trade him at his lowest value.

Buddy Hield (26/3/4 with eight 3-pointers) and Davion Mitchell (19/4/4 with four 3-pointers) were responsible for 12 of the Kings' 22 3-pointers, with the latter having entered Friday shooting just 39.5% from the field and 21.6% from three. Mitchell's defense is what got him onto the radar of many fantasy managers, but the other end of the floor is why he's rostered in just 21% of Yahoo leagues. Mitchell doesn't need to be picked up immediately, but he is certainly worth tracking. Harrison Barnes (14/10/4/1 with two 3-pointers) was relatively quiet when compared to his start to the season, but he still managed to produce a decent line.

LaMelo Ball (right hip contusion) was cleared to play a couple hours before tip-off, and it's a good thing that he did. Ball shot 9-of-14 from the field and 2-of-2 from the line, tallying 24 points, three rebounds, 13 assists and four 3-pointers in 31 minutes. If not for he and Gordon Hayward (25/2/2 with three 3-pointer), who knows how bad things would have gotten for the Hornets. Neither Terry Rozier (9/1/4 with one 3-pointer) nor Kelly Oubre (nine points, four rebounds and one 3-pointer) offered much offensively for the Hornets, and Miles Bridges (10/5/2/1 with one 3-pointer) was held in check as well. If there's anyone on this team who's especially looking forward to the end of this trip it's Oubre, who has scored a total of nine points in losses to the Warriors and Kings.

Cody Martin (12/1/1/2/2) was perfect from the field (5-of-5) and the foul line (2-of-2), and he's currently rostered in just 21% of Yahoo leagues. He's a better fit in deep leagues, especially when considering who's ahead of Martin in the rotation. P.J. Washington (left elbow) being sidelined meant rotation minutes for Nick Richards, who, in 19 minutes, put up seven points, two rebounds, two assists, two steals and two blocked shots. While Richards did play well on Friday, there's no need to consider grabbing him off of your league's waiver wire.