Matthew Braine

Saturday Dose

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Dose: J-Smoove Goes Wild

Saturday, January 11, 2014


Friday night’s 11-game slate included a slew of big and small performances. From Zach Randolph’s near triple-double to Larry Sanders’ disappearing act, the fantasy world was chock full of interesting storylines.


Editor's Note: Rotoworld's partner FanDuel is hosting a one-day $18,000 Fantasy Basketball league for Saturday night's games. It's $10 to join and first prize is $2,500. Starts at 7pm ET on Saturday. Here's the FanDuel link.


Josh Smith goes hard


The Pistons forward was a fantasy guru Friday night against Philadelphia, dropping 22 points, 13 rebounds, seven assists, four steals, and five blocks.  Smith’s plentiful line was just one steal short of a coveted 5 x 5 line and certainly helped owners across the board. He did shoot just 8-23 but nailed two three-pointers to cushion the percentage blow. Despite shooting a career low 40% from the field this season, and an overall dip in production from last year, Smith has been rolling as of late. Over the last four games he’s averaging 17 points, 10 rebounds, four assists, two seals, and nearly three blocks per contest. His shooting will always be an issue but it’s much more tolerable when he’s producing versatile lines.


Grizzlies duo sinks Phoenix


Both Mike Conley and Zach Randolph went off against the Suns on Friday, tallying a bulky 51 points and 14 assists combined. Z-Bo led the charge, nearly notching a triple-double with 20 points, 13 rebounds, and seven assists while Conley tied his career-high, pouring in 31 points with seven dimes. With both Tony Allen and Marc Gasol out of the lineup, Conley and Randolph picked up the slack, scoring nearly half of the team’s points. For Conley, the point guard has now scored over 30 in back-to-back games while Randolph has scored 20 or more in seven of his last 10 contests. As the team’s primary options, both Conley and Randolph should continue to produce in bunches for the foreseeable future.


Editor's Note: Rotoworld's partner FanDuel is hosting a one-day $18,000 Fantasy Basketball league for Saturday night's games. It's $10 to join and first prize is $2,500. Starts at 7pm ET on Saturday. Here's the FanDuel link.

Clippers starting unit runs wild


It was a big night in Los Angeles as the Clippers demolished the Lakers behind a dynamite performance from the starting group. First off, J.J. Redick returned from his wrist injury to score 19 points including one triple while his backcourt mate Darren Collison put up a gem with 20 points, five boards, seven assists, one block, and one steal. The two should make up the starting backcourt until Chris Paul returns.


In the frontcourt, DeAndre Jordan likely helped some owners win blocks in head-to-head leagues by swatting seven shots to go along with his 13 points and 10 rebounds while Blake Griffin scored 33 points on 12-15 shooting with 12 rebounds, four steals, and two blocks.


Sure, Jared Dudley scored just five points so only four of the starters actually went off but who’s counting. Yes, these enticing lines came against a depleted Lakers squad but the chemistry was clearly there. Jamal Crawford, who scored just 11 points on 3-13 shooting Friday, should also get back on track after returning to the bench for the first time in weeks.   Either way, fantasy owners can certainly expect good things from this crop of Clippers.

George has horrendous shooting night


Paul George has been in a mini-slump lately and Friday night magnified the recent slide. The small forward hit just 2-14 shots for eight points but did contribute 14 rebounds, six assists, and two steals, salvaging a useable fantasy line. Not counting Wednesday’s 28 point performance, George’s last three lines have been very mediocre. He’s averaging just 12 points, seven rebounds, and five assists over that span and shooting under 40% over his last seven games. He’ll snap out of it sooner than later so this minor buy-low window should be closing shortly.

Stephenson’s return stifles Granger


This season’s Most Improved Player candidate returned on Friday, posting a good all-around line of 11 points, 10 rebounds, and five assists. Stephenson had missed the previous game with a minor knee injury but looked perfectly healthy in his 34 minutes on the court. Danny Granger on the other hand had a bad outing, shooting just 1-7 from the field, finishing with two points and three turnovers. Granger started in Stephenson’s place on Wednesday but returned to his bench role Friday and didn’t look good in doing so. Granger will likely be a serviceable play for the rest of the season but Stephenson is clearly the coveted real life and fantasy asset here. 

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You can find Matthew Braine on Twitter @MatthewBraine.
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