Jared Johnson

Basketball Daily Dose

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Dose: Do Your Own Research

Saturday, November 4, 2017


A Vengeful King

 

LeBron James powered the Cavs to a 130-122 win over the Wizards, racking up 57 points on 23-of-34 shooting to go with 11 rebounds, seven assists, two 3-pointers, three steals, two blocks and three turnovers in 43 minutes of floor time. King James was also a perfect 9-of-9 from the charity stripe, giving him an incredible 75.1 true shooting percentage on the evening to accompany his massive 42.4 usage rate, and this was also his 11th career 50-plus-point performance, which tied Allen Iverson for the sixth-most in NBA history. The Cavs have gotten off to a sluggish start this season, opening the year with a 4-5 record, and they haven’t done much to suggest through the early portions of the 2017-18 season that they’ll be the obvious No. 1 seed out East this year. Additionally, Isaiah Thomas probably won’t hit the ground running, so I think LeBron James is going to be carrying this squad in a big way this year, and if Cleveland is fighting for seeding, that will greatly reduce the chances of a late-season shutdown for King James. He’s been a top-3 player through the first nine games of the season, and with how crucial he is to the Cavs’ success, I see him keeping this up and logging massive minutes in a sort of revenge year for the King who lost his Prince. Enjoy the ride.

 

The New Bash Brothers?

 

Kristaps Porzingis kept his foot on the gas pedal during Friday’s easy 120-107 win over Phoenix, erupting for 37 points on 13-of-22 shooting to go with seven boards, one 3-pointer, one steal, three blocks and two turnovers in 31 minutes. He also connected on 10 of his 13 freebies, giving him a sterling 66.7 true shooting percentage to go with his huge 38.8 usage rate. PorzinGod has failed to crack the 30-point plateau just twice in his eight games this year, and he’s hitting career-highs in points (29.0), rebounds (7.8), field goal percentage (48.3) and usage (36.1), so he’s clearly had no trouble adjusting to being the lead dog in New York. Enes Kanter also kept up his incredible play, recording yet another double-double with 16 points, 15 rebounds, three assists, one turnover and a token block in 32 minutes. So far, Kanter has been churning out top-55 value on the season in 9-cat leagues, although his minutes have been up-and-down (just wait until Joakim Noah is back) and he’s shooting 63.6 percent from the field (62.5 percent from 10-16 feet) which does not feel sustainable at all, so he looks like a sell-high guy to me. Think about this, if New York isn’t in the playoff hunt late in the year, and they probably won’t be, who do you think will be the guy the Knicks want to start developing? Kanter, who is on an expiring deal? Or Willy Hernangomez? Who is just 23 years old and in his second year in the league. While Kanter has been great so far, I don’t love his long-term outlook.

 

Is a basketball really a sphere? Do your own research.

 

Kyrie Irving went into the first half of Friday’s game with just three points on 1-of-9 shooting, but then decided to go human torch mode after halftime and finished with 25 points, six dimes, five boards, three triples, two steals, one block and zero turnovers in the 101-94 win over OKC. Irving was nothing short of incredible through the second half of action, rocking a 37.4 usage rate and 76.8 true shooting percentage, assisting or scoring on 37 of the Celtics 64 second-half points and propelling his squad to their seventh-straight victory. Uncle Drew might have some interesting opinions about the shape of the earth, but he sure is good at hoopin’ and I think he could realistically finish inside the top-5 this season.

 

The Process II

 

Ben Simmons notched his second-career triple-double in Philly’s 121-110 win over Indiana, tallying 14 points (5-of-13 FGs, 4-of-4 FTs), 11 rebounds, 11 assists, two steals, three blocks and five turnovers. Wow. I was concerned that the lack of 3-pointers (0.0), turnovers (3.4) and poor free throw shooting (58.8 percent) would be a big enough issue to limit Simmons to late-round status in 9-cat leagues, but he’s more than compensated for those weaknesses with averages of 18.0 points, 9.8 boards, 8.2 dimes, 1.6 steals and 0.7 swats per contest while connecting on an impressive 51.6 percent of his shot attempts. If you’re punting free throws, those numbers are good enough for top-20 value in 9-cat leagues, so yeah, he’s a guy I wished I owned in more leagues. And also yeah, Dennis Smith Jr. no longer looks like the favorite to take home Rookie of the Year honors.

 

On The Radar

 

Donovan Mitchell popped off for 25 points on 9-of-20 shooting (4-of-4 from the stripe) to go with three boards, three trey-bombs, two steals and two blocks in 32 minutes off the bench. This kid is a straight baller and was already trending up prior to the Joe Johnson (wrist) injury, but with Johnson out for at least the next two weeks, it looks as though Mitchell will eat up most his minutes as he’s officially forced his way into the rotation in Utah. Over the past six, Mitchell has put in averages of 17.3 points, 1.5 steals and an elite 2.5 triples per contest on 41.3 percent shooting while boasting an impressive 33.6 usage rate, which has been good enough for top-75 value in 9-cat leagues. It only helps that the oft-injured Rodney Hood currently occupies the starting two-spot in Utah, and if he goes down at any point this season, Mitchell will be the obvious choice to move into the starting five. In other words, he needs to be owned in all leagues.

 

David Nwaba earned another start on Friday and finished with 16 points (7-of-12 FGs, 2-of-3 FTs), five boards, one assist, two steals and one block in 35 minutes. In his past two starts, Nwaba has put in averages of 10.0 points, 8.0 boards, 1.5 steals and 1.5 blocks per contest in 32.3 minutes a night, so he’s definitely on the radar as a speculative add in deeper formats. The former starting three-man Paul Zipser just isn’t all that great at basketball, and with Zach LaVine (knee) likely out another couple weeks, Nwaba should remain in the starting five. When LaVine gets back, Justin Holiday could spend more time at the three and push Nwaba for minutes, but right now, Nwaba fits the mold as a relatively unknown guy on a bad team that could be a fantasy factor.

 

John Henson posted four points, 13 rebounds, three assists and one steal in another start on Friday. Henson always has had upside, but with Jason Kidd, it’s basically only a matter of time until Henson heads back to the bench to pick up a string of DNP-CDs. As a starter, he’s someone to consider in deep leagues for his shot blocking prowess, but don’t be afraid to cut him once Kidd starts fiddling with the rotations.

 

Bojan Bogdanovic scored 21 points on 8-of-14 shooting (3-of-3 from the stripe) to go with four boards, two assists, two triples and two steals in 35 minutes. He’s been producing late-round value on the year behind averages of 13.9 points, 1.6 treys, 3.1 boards, 1.7 assists and 0.8 steals per contest on 51.7 percent shooting, so give him a look if you’re seeking a cheap source of points and triples.

 

Courtney Lee scored 10 points on 4-of-12 shooting to go with five boards, three assists, two 3-pointers, two steals and one turnover in 35 minutes. He’s not the most exciting guy to own, but he’s locked in as a starter in New York and should be a reliable source of steals and triples with solid percentages and a minimal amount of turnovers. Give him a look if that’s something you need.

 

Luc Mbah a Moute registered 20 points (8-of-11 FGs, 2-of-3 FTs), four boards, two assists, two 3-pointers, two steals, one block and one turnover in 34 minutes off the bench on Friday. He’s getting solid minutes in Houston (29.1) and has been a sneaky late-round asset this year with averages of 9.3 points, 4.3 boards, 1.3 steals, 0.7 blocks and 0.9 triples per contest, so give him a look if those numbers are appealing.

 

Norman Powell had his second solid outing in a row on Friday, scoring 15 points on 5-of-7 shooting (3-of-4 from the stripe) to go with two boards, two triples, two assists, two steals and one turnover in 30 minutes. He had a nice game to open the year but followed that up with a series of duds, but maybe this is a sign that he’s ready to start rolling. I’d want to see him do this one more time before recommending him as an add in standard 12-team leagues, but he’s definitely on the radar as a speculative pickup in deeper formats.

 


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A hoops fanatic, Jared Johnson has been a member of the Rotoworld team since 2013. Follow him on Twitter @JaredJ831, and feel free to send him your questions regarding trades, draft strategies and all things fantasy basketball.
Email :Jared Johnson



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