Memphis – Zach Randolph has been struggling as he deals with a sore back, but still looks like a safe four-game play this week, along with Marc Gasol and Mike Conley. Jerryd Bayless has been starting and hot, but Tayshaun Prince may be ready to join the starting unit soon. The bottom line is that I don’t trust Bayless enough to start him, and the same goes for Prince. Tony Allen is worth a watchful eye with the new lineup in Memphis, but is another guy I don’t have enough confidence in to start.
Miami – LeBron, D-Wade and Bosh have a four-game week, which is all you need to know.
Milwaukee – The Bucks play three times this week, but Monta Ellis, Brandon Jennings, Ersan Ilyasova and Larry Sanders still look like solid starts in almost any league. Weigh your options carefully. Larry bounced back from a funk on Saturday with 17 points, 13 boards and six blocks. Hey Now! If you picked up Sammy Dalembert in a panic, drop him.
Minnesota – Alexey Shved is heating up in a big way over the last two games, but I still don’t trust him enough to start him in most leagues. He is, however, a nice guy to stash right now until we see if he can keep it going. Derrick Williams has been hit-or-miss lately, along with Dante Cunningham, and the only sure things in Minnesota are Nikola Pekovic and Andrei Kirilenko. Ricky Rubio looks like a decent four-game play this week, as his minutes-restriction has finally been lifted.
New Orleans – Robin Lopez is hot after going for 16 points on Saturday, but he had just two rebounds in 25 minutes. He’s averaging 15 points and 1.5 blocks over his last four games though, and looks like an interesting three-game play if you’re thin at center. Al-Farouq Aminu has cooled off and I’d recommend dropping him for one of these guys. Greivis Vasquez can’t shoot the ball right now, but is still a double-double machine, while Anthony Davis keeps plugging along in limited minutes. Eric Gordon was out on Saturday due to a sore knee and back, and as expected, is a big headache to own. He doesn’t play in back-to-backs and the Hornets have one coming this Sunday and Monday. Start him at your own risk.
New York – With four games, Carmelo Anthony, J.R. Smith and Tyson Chandler all look like must-starts. I’m not touching Jason Kidd these days, although Raymond Felton is dealing with a finger injury. I think he’s going to play through it, and somehow, Amare Stoudemire is hot. I don’t know how long it will last, but Stoudemire is worth starting right now. If you’re holding Iman Shumpert, I’d dump him for one of these guys.
Oklahoma City – Four games this week means Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and Serge Ibaka should be ready to lead teams to another fantasy win. Durant is dealing with a rib injury, but I’d be shocked if he doesn’t play on Monday. Watch for updates.
Orlando – Jameer Nelson is dealing with an arm injury and Arron Afflalo has missed four straight games with a bad calf, leaving both of them iffy for Monday against the Sixers. With four games this week Nikola Vucevic and J.J. Redick are must-starts, while Andrew Nicholson is worth keeping an eye on. Al Harrington should be back sometime this week, and is also worth a watchful eye for the team that just lost Glen Davis. Moe Harkless is playing well and will become a must-own player if he backs up Saturday’s 19-point, 14-rebound performance this week. If Nelson is out, E’Twaun Moore could be a sneaky play this week, so watch for news on Nelson and Afflalo this afternoon.
Philadelphia – The Sixers play three times this week and Jrue Holiday, Thaddeus Young, Nick Young, Evan Turner and Spencer Hawes are all worth starting in most leagues.
Phoenix – Michael Beasley is hot, Jared Dudley is playing well and Goran Dragic (banged up or not), Marcin Gortat and Luis Scola are all auto-starts with four games this week. While I don’t trust Shannon Brown right now, I am intrigued enough with Beasley to start him in some important leagues. He's scored between 24 and 27 points in three of his last five games, with plenty of boards and steals to boot.
Portland – Wesley Matthews is iffy for tonight against the Wolves, but even if he’s out I don’t trust Victor Claver and Luke Babbitt enough to fill in for him. J.J. Hickson, Nicolas Batum (wrist), LaMarcus Aldridge and Damian Lillard are must-starts with four games, but I’m benching Matthews for now.
Sacramento – DeMarcus Cousins is a must-start with three games, but Tyreke Evans, Isaiah Thomas and Marcus Thornton should probably be benched for safer options. And if you’re still holding Jason Thompson, make a move.
San Antonio – Tim Duncan’s MRI on his knee came back relatively clean, but you can bet Gregg Popovich has had nightmares about seeing Duncan’s leg getting rolled on by a huge man. I see no reason for Popovich to play Duncan much until the playoffs get here and I’d be trying to move him if I owned him. Duncan is day-to-day and should be benched, especially with just three games. Keep an eye on Boris Diaw this week.
Toronto – The Raps have three games and Rudy Gay, DeMar DeRozan, Kyle Lowry and Amir Johnson are all decent plays. Andrea Bargnani is due back soon and Jonas Valanciunas has been quiet in his return from injury, but it will be interesting to see what the Raptors’ rotation looks like 10 days from now.
Utah – With four games Al Jefferson and Paul Millsap are must-starts. Gordon Hayward’s shoulder injury remains a mystery, so keep him benched until you see him playing. Derrick Favors, Marvin Williams and Jamaal Tinsley are all risky starts, while Randy Foye has quietly hit double digits in scoring in eight straight games and had 23 points and six 3-pointers on Saturday. He looks like a decent starting option to me.
Washington – With three games there aren’t really any must-starts for the Wiz. Emeka Okafor and John Wall are close, while Bradley Beal remains iffy with his wrist injury. Despite my incredible lack of patience, I’m still holding Beal in a daily league, but we just don’t know when he’s going to play again.