Kenneth Faried Nuggets – The Manimal is a beast, averaging 14 points, 10 boards, a steal and block over his last five games. The Nuggets finish 4-2 and Faried should be owned in all leagues after his big week.
Glen Davis Magic – Davis has been a beast in the absence of Dwight Howard, averaging 19.4 points, 11 boards and 1.6 steals over his last five games. It sounds like Big Dwight is going to be out again on Friday and is even seeking a second opinion on his bad back, which could mean he'll be shut down until the playoffs. And if that happens, Davis will remain a must-own, must-start fantasy player. But once Howard is back, the Big Baby party should end quickly.
Anthony Randolph Timberwolves – Ant-Rand, as I’ve been known to call him, is suddenly hot with Kevin Love sidelined, averaging 22 points, 7.5 rebounds, four blocks and 29 minutes over his last two games. I don’t trust him, at all, but as long as Love is out, it looks like he’s going to get some burn. The Wolves have four games next week and if Love is out, Randolph will be worth a look in most leagues. And while we’re talking about Love, while I wouldn’t call it a trend yet, it is interesting to note that this is the second straight year he’s let his owners down in the stretch. He missed the final six games last season with a groin injury.
Derrick Williams Timberwolves – Williams had 27 points, eight boards, a steal, block and three 3-pointers on Wednesday after Love went down, but had just four points and five fouls on 1-of-7 shooting in 26 minutes on Thursday. Again, if Love remains sidelined, Williams should get all the minutes he can handle, and I actually trust him more than Randolph. And on a side note, Anthony Tolliver has done nothing in his last two games, but if Love is out, I wouldn’t be surprised to see him post a couple nice lines next week.
Marreese Speights Grizzlies – Despite the return of Zach Randolph, Speights has been a solid play during this five-game week, and I wish I would have stuck with him instead of Byron Mullens. Speights is averaging 10 points, six boards and nearly a block per game over his last five and the Grizzlies finish up 4-2.
Brandan Wright Mavs – Wright is settling in nicely with the Mavericks, averaging 13.5 points, six boards, 1.8 blocks and 30 minutes over his last four games. I didn’t see this one coming, but with four games next week, Wright is now a real sneaky add in most leagues.
Ed Davis Raptors – Davis has posted back-to-back double-doubles and looks like a solid option as long as Andrea Bargnani is out with his calf injury. Amir Johnson might mess with Davis’ minutes some, but Davis is the better option right now. And if Bargnani isn’t shut down for the season, I’ll be surprised, making Davis look very attractive in all leagues.
Jason Thompson Kings – Perhaps no player in the league is as tough to read as Thompson, who had 18 points, seven boards, a steal and block on Wednesday, but had a total of 12 points and 11 boards in his previous three games. The Kings only have three games next week, so I’d rather own Brandan Wright at this point. But Thompson is starting for the Kings and is still worth a look despite the inconsistency.
Jason Smith Hornets – Smith is starting for the Hornets and is averaging 14 points, five boards and a steal over his last five games, but has also scored 22 and 26 points in two of his last three. It looks like the Hornets are going to continue to give him heavy minutes and Smith looks like a pretty safe bet with four games next week.
J.J. Hickson Blazers – The Blazers and Hickson only have three games next week, which is the only bad thing I can say about Hickson at this point. He’s averaging 17.5 points, 11.5 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 1.5 blocks in his last two games and LaMarcus Aldridge is done for the season with a hip injury. Three games or not, Hickson is a must-own player.
Kevin Seraphin Wizards – Seraphin is another three-gamer next week, but is averaging 17 points, nine boards and 1.8 blocks over his last five games. Yes, Nene could return to buzzkill him a bit, but if you can handle the three-game schedule, Seraphin is looking good.
Marcus Camby Rockets – Unlike Hickson and Seraphin, Camby’s schedule is money as the Rockets play five games next week. Samuel Dalembert is afterthought for Kevin McHale and Camby is averaging 9.0 points, 12 boards and 1.5 blocks over his last two games, playing 26 minutes in each of them. He could drop at any time with an injury, but for now, looks like a must-own player.
Spencer Hawes Sixers – The Sixers play four games next week and Hawes is flourishing off the bench, averaging 14.5 points, 6.0 rebounds and 3.5 blocks in his last two games since being benched for Nikola Vucevic. The Sixers also have a strong 3-game week to end the season, meaning Hawes is worth picking up in most leagues.
Tristan Thompson Cavs – The Cavs finish up 4-3 and Thompson comes in at 10 points, nine boards and nearly a block per game over his last five. Anderson Varejao could make an appearance next week, but Thompson should still see a ton of minutes to finish the season.
Derrick Favors Jazz – DeMarre Carroll is the only small forward available in Utah and deserves a look in deeper leagues. But he’s still DeMarre Carroll, and Favors is suddenly seeing time at small forward for the depleted Jazz. He’s averaging 10 points, nine boards and 1.7 blocks over his last three games, but keep in mind the Jazz only have three games next week.
Jeremy Tyler Warriors – With five games next week, Tyler, who has scored a total of 11 points over his last three games, might be worth a look if scoring isn’t an issue for your fantasy team. Over his last five games, Tyler comes in at 7.0 points, 5.0 rebounds and 1.0 blocks per game. He’s probably a stretch to start in most leagues, but is worth a look if you’re in a deep one.