Monday night was an interesting one in the NBA, as some things made complete sense (Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green going off for a depleted Spurs team) and other things made no sense at all (Bobcats winning at Boston, seven of eight road teams winning, Bradley Beal exploding and Martell Webster disappearing, etc.). Follow me on Twitter by clicking here.
Clippers Rock 76ers
The Clippers crushed the Sixers on Monday and there were few surprises on the L.A. side of things. Chris Paul was sensational, DeAndre Jordan bounced back from a terrible game, Blake Griffin dunked with his left hand and played well, Jamal Crawford scored 20, and Matt Barnes had 11 points, two 3-pointers and a steal and block while filling in for Caron Butler, who was out with a sore back. And with Paul playing well, Eric Bledsoe had just 10 points and five assists in 23 minutes.
The Sixers got 29 points out of Nick Young, who had scored a total of 14 points in his previous two games. If he was dropped in your league, I still think he’s worth owning the rest of the way. Jrue Holiday hit just 4-of-14 shots, but also had 10 points, nine assists, a steal and two 3-pointers to salvage a decent line. Lavoy Allen didn’t make his new owners very happy with his four points, two boards and zero blocks after his 14 points, 22 boards and a block on Saturday. Inconsistency could be his middle name, while Arnett Moultrie continues to emerge, and played 26 minutes with eight points, six boards and two steals last night. Keep an eye on him.
Bobcats Stop Celtics’ Streak
My main man Byron Mullens blew up for 25 points, 18 rebounds and four 3-pointers on 10-of-16 shooting as the Bobcats held on to beat the Celtics and snap their seven-game winning streak. Charlotte was the only home team to win tonight. Kemba Walker, Gerald Henderson and Ramon Sessions all played well, while Bismack Biyombo had eight rebounds and four blocks (but scored just four points). Mullens' owners should not get used to him shooting it this well, but it was a fun night for us.
The Celtics got news that Leandro Barbosa could miss the rest of the season with a knee injury, which means that Avery Bradley, Courtney Lee and Jason Terry will all benefit. However, they’re all too inconsistent, even without Barbosa, to be counted on nightly. Kevin Garnett stayed hot with 16 points, 13 boards and two blocks, Paul Pierce flirted with a triple-double with 13 points, eight boards and eight assists, and Jeff Green had 18 points, a 3-pointer, a steal and a block in the loss. I think Green should be owned the rest of the way.
Timberwolves Top Cavs
Luke Ridnour led the Wolves with 21 points and all five starters (as well as Alexey Shved) scored in double figures for the win. Ricky Rubio had a double-double with 13 points, 10 assists and five steals, but also committed seven turnovers. Mickael Gelabale had 11 points and six boards in another start, and could be relevant until Andrei Kirilenko is back from his quad injury.
Kyrie Irving had 20 points and seven assists to lead the Cavs, who got a big line from Tristan Thompson, while Dion Waiters, Alonzo Gee and Marreese Speights all contributed with double-digit scoring. All are worth a look in fantasy leagues, while Wayne Ellington, who also scored 10, isn’t worth a serious look just yet. Irving suffered a left ankle injury in this one, but played through it. Keep an eye out for news on his availability for Wednesday’s game against the Spurs.
Nets Beat Pacers in OT
Deron Williams is out until the All-Star break is over (if not longer) with a bad ankle, so C.J. Watson started last night – and had one point on 0-of-7 shooting in 19 minutes. Tyshawn Taylor was more effective off the bench with a career-high 12 points and two assists, but it’s clear the Nets (and Williams’ owners) are praying he’ll be ready to go after the break. Brook Lopez and Joe Johnson played well, Reggie Evans blew up for 22 rebounds and two blocks, but also scored just eight points. And just as the universe was ready to drop Gerald Wallace from its fantasy roster, he had 11 points, 11 rebounds, two steals, two blocks and two 3-pointers. As I’ve been saying, the minutes are there, so it would make sense that some numbers would start to follow. Maybe this is the start of a hot streak.
The Pacers were just weird last night. Jeff Pendergraph had 14 points and 10 boards in 17 minutes off the bench (ignore him) and Paul George hit 1-of-10 shots for five points before fouling out. David West hit just 2-of-11 shots for seven points and suffered a left eye injury early, but eventually returned in the third quarter. The big news in Indy is that Danny Granger could play on Wednesday, which would eventually push George to shooting guard and Lance Stephenson to the bench. Stephenson had 14 points in 40 minutes, but his run could be coming to an end. Oh, and Roy Hibbert had a double-double with 12 points, 10 boards and three blocks, but hit just 5-of-18 shots in the process. OK, so maybe I was wrong, and Hibbert will never start hitting layups this season.