MEM – The Grizzlies are another four-game team, meaning Mike Conley and Zach Randolph are nearly must-starts, despite Conley’s lackluster play. Jerryd Bayless, Tony Allen and Kosta Koufos are also worth a look, while I like the idea of taking a flier on James Johnson this week. Find out more about him in Waiver Wired.
MIA – LeBron James is listed as doubtful for Monday vs. the Nuggets due to his groin injury, and sat out on Saturday. Michael Beasley should play well in his absence, but I’m not sure I could put him into a weekly lineup. I’m starting LeBron in a weekly league and am just hoping for three games. Mario Chalmers and Chris Bosh look like must-starts, but Dwyane Wade will likely sit out one of the back-to-back games on Friday and Saturday. If you like him for three games, roll with him.
MIL – The Bucks only have three games this week and John Henson is iffy for the first one with a sprained ankle. Watch for an update Monday, but I’m not brave enough to start him in weekly leagues right now. Brandon Knight, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Khris Middleton, Ersan Ilyasova, Larry Sanders and O.J. Mayo can all be started, depending on options.
MIN – The Wolves go just three times, but Kevin Love is a must-start, regardless of your format. Ricky Rubio, Kevin Martin and Nikola Pekovic are decent options, while Corey Brewer has fallen off a cliff. Of those four, I’m most comfortable with Pekovic this week after his four straight double-doubles and big offensive game. He’s averaging 24.6 points and11.4 rebounds over his last five, but just 0.4 blocks.
NOP – Four games for the Pelicans means that Jrue Holiday, Ryan Anderson and Anthony Davis are must-starts. Tyreke Evans is also a nice play this week, especially if Eric Gordon continues to sit with a hip injury after missing his last two games. Check back on his status for Monday’s game against the Pelicans. I’m running Al-Farouq Aminu in a couple leagues, as he’s suddenly hot again and is producing in most categories.
NYK – Carmelo Anthony is the only sure bet here with three games, but even he is iffy for Thursday due to his sprained ankle. Raymond Felton, Pablo Prigioni, Metta World Peace, Andrea Bargnani and Kenyon Martin are all too banged up to be in lineups this week, while starting Beno Udrih, Iman Shumpert, Amare Stoudemire or Tyson Chandler is risky business for three games. I’m feeling J.R. Smith again, but am guessing you can find a four-gamer to play over him.
OKC – Kevin Durant, Serge Ibaka and Reggie Jackson are all must-starts with four games, while Thabo Sefolosha and Jeremy Lamb are worth a look. Lamb scored a career-high 22 points with three 3-pointers on Sunday, but keep in mind the Thunder blew the Rockets out of the gym, creating some garbage opportunities. Russell Westbrook is out until after the All-Star Break after more knee surgery.
ORL – The Magic have three games this week, making Jameer Nelson, Victor Oladipo, Arron Afflalo, Tobias Harris, Glen Davis and Nikola Vucevic shaky starters, depending on your options. They all played well on Sunday, leaving owners with tough choices.
PHI – The Sixers play three times, but Thaddeus Young, Michael Carter-Williams, Spencer Hawes and Evan Turner (who as back on Sunday) are all playing well enough to be started in any league. In fact, Young and MCW look like must-starts.
PHX – With a three-game week, Goran Dragic and Eric Bledsoe look nearly like must-starts, while C Miles Plumlee is a decent starting option after a huge week. Start P.J. Tucker, the Morris twins, Channing Frye and Gerald Green at your own risk.
POR – Damian Lillard and LaMarcus Aldridge are two of the hottest players in the league and are no-brainers. Wesley Matthews and Nicolas Batum are also must-starts, while Robin Lopez is worth a close look depending on your center options.
SAC – The Kings go three times again this week, but Isaiah Thomas and DeMarcus Cousins look like must-starts. Cousins had a big week and finished it with 29 points, 14 boards and a block against the Spurs on Sunday, while Thomas lit them up for 27 points, nine dimes and five 3-pointers. Rudy Gay also played well in that one with 24 points, nine rebounds, a steal and a block, making him a solid option, as well. I wouldn’t start any other Kings in a weekly league.
SAN – The Spurs go three times and have no back-to-backs, meaning Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili should be safe starts, and all three played very well on Sunday. Marco Belinelli had four points on Sunday, while Danny Green was 3-of-10 for seven points. Leave both of them on your bench. Tiago Splitter had 11 points, eight boards and a block last night, but is still not trustworthy. Green has scored in double figures in just five of his 14 games this month.
TOR – The Raps go four times and Kyle Lowry is as hot as any point guard in the league, making him a must-start. The same holds true for DeMar DeRozan, while Amir Johnson, Terrence Ross and Jonas Valanciunas are all reasonable starts this week.
UTA – The Jazz have three games, meaning Trey Burke, Gordon Hayward and Derrick Favors are all solid options this week. Alec Burks, Richard Jefferson, Enes Kanter and Marvin Williams are all worth a look, but I would be leery of putting any of them into a weekly lineup right now.
WAS – The Wizards play four this week, making John Wall and Bradley Beal must-starts. Trevor Ariza, Nene, Marcin Gortat and Martell Webster are also playable this week, but I have some trust issues with Nene and Webster right now, and you should too.