Mike Gallagher

NBA Fantasy Trends

print article archives RSS

Stats: Isaac Drops Science

Tuesday, March 13, 2018


So what’s the 4-1-1 on the rest of the year? Well, we’re a month away from the season ending on 4/11. Oh, nobody says 4-1-1 anymore? My bad. Anyway, a lot of us are in the fantasy playoffs right now and we’re finally seeing some players get much more run than they have all season. Today, I thought it would be interesting to just run through some of the guys getting minutes and explain if they can keep it going all season.

 

We gotta start with Jonathan Isaac. He’s been back for five games and we’re finally getting to see his impact on defense. He hasn’t really done much on the stat sheet on offense, averaging 3.3 points, 3.2 boards, 1.3 blocks, 2.0 steals and 0.7 treys on just 27.6 percent from the field in those five. Isaac hasn’t even gone to the line since he’s been back, but he has only turned it over 0.3 times per game over his 19.2 minutes per game.

 

It’s also worth a mention that the current starting lineup has a +3.5 net rating in their 39 minutes together (Isaac, D.J. Augustin, Mario Hezonja, Jonathon Simmons and Nikola Vucevic). Isaac has the athleticism to guard threes and of course his rim protection works on even smaller fives — he has basically played all PF since AG went down, though. This was so awesome on Saturday.

 

Ripped Toby! Isaac's versatility on defense is probably going to help him get minutes even when Aaron Gordon gets back. Those two have played next to each other for 67 minutes on the season and there was even talk of Isaac starting next to AG with Jonathon Simmons moving to the bench just before the Gordon concussion.

 

Editor’s Note: Compete in a live snake draft right now! Drafts take as little as 2 minutes to complete and last just one night. For a limited time, DRAFT is giving Rotoworld readers a FREE entry into a real money draft and a Money-Back Guarantee up to $100! Here's the link.

 

As you can probably see in the video, he’s been killer on pick and roll. Against roll men and big ball handlers, he has allowed just 24 points on 39 possessions. That’s good for an elite 0.62 points per possession (Synergy). That should also really help him get minutes, especially with the smaller Augustin out there.

 

It’s also worth a mention that the current starting lineup has a +3.5 net rating in their 39 minutes together (Isaac, D.J. Augustin, Mario Hezonja, Jonathon Simmons and Nikola Vucevic). Isaac has the athleticism to guard threes and of course his rim protection works on even smaller fives — he has basically played all PF since AG went down, though.

 

We still haven’t seen Isaac that “wow” offensive game, but it could be coming soon. Yeah, we won’t talk about how he’s only a 12th percentile offensive player, but a rookie on a bad team being a 75th percentile defender is super impressive (Synergy). As we have been saying on the podcast, this is a ride you’re going to hop on. The Magic have been playing Khem Birch at power forward some of the time, so again Isaac could find 25-30 minutes even when Gordon is back. Tonight against the Spurs should be fun. We may not see an Isaac drop this kind of ball since Sir Isaac Newton.

 

We had to wait a while for Nemanja Bjelica because the Wolves have one of the weirdest schedules I’ve ever seen. Somehow the schedule makers had it so they’ve only played two games since Mar. 3. Four teams have played six games in that span and every other team in the NBA has played at least four times. We have one more stretch of off nights because they don’t play Wednesday, Thursday or Friday after their game in Washington tonight. I can’t remember a stretch of three games in two full weeks unless we’re talking about a London trip. 

 

Bjelica’s playing time has basically slotted right into Jimmy Butler’s over his last three with 40, 40 and 45 minutes in his last three games. Since he’s taken over, Bjelica has averaged 13.3 points, 8.3 boards, 2.3 assists, 1.5 steals, 0.5 blocks and 2.0 treys on 50.0 percent from the field and 80 percent from the line in six games. That makes him a top-20 player in nine-category leagues.

 

Fantasy owners obviously have to just keep rockin’ the Big Belly like they’re playing against King Hippo on Mike Tyson’s Punchout. 

 

Oh hey Brandon Jennings is back! While it wasn’t the 55-point game he had back in his rookie season, his line of 16 points, eight boards, 12 dimes and three treys is extremely impressive. If you missed it, the Bucks put together a nice little highlight.

 

 

We’ve seen the Bucks throw some funky lineups out there, and they’re going with more Giannis Antetokounmpo at the five, so there is definitely a chance for Jennings here. Jennings’ stat line was not a garbage-time special either, so he has a chance to hang more productive lines. Of course, you’re not expecting a 16/8/12 stat line maybe ever again. If you want to add him for a guy that’s not helping you, I’m down. He’ll probably be a popular DFS play tomorrow against the Magic, too. Revenge game!

 

While he’s not getting more minutes, we do have to talk about Kevin Durant. He is on another heater game over his last three games, averaging 38.7 points, 9.7 boards, 4.7 assists, 3.0 blocks and 5.0 treys on a 38.2 usage rate and a 63.2 true shooting percentage (TS%). This probably shouldn’t come as a big surprise with Stephen Curry missing most of that action with his sprained ankle in the first half on Thursday.

 

This has been fully expected and KD has been awesome all season when he’s not with Curry. Over his 816 minutes when Curry is not on the court, KD has per-36 averages of 29.9 points, 8.0 boards, 5.6 assists, 2.5 blocks, 0.7 steals and 2.9 treys. His usage jumps up to 34.6 without Chef compared to just 26.3 percent with him. Although, his efficiency does drop to 60.8 from a ridiculous 67.8 TS%. Yeah, 68 TS% is kinda nice unlike KD.

 

Breaking it down further in his three-game sample, KD has been absolutely bonkers in the fourth quarter. In those 23 minutes, he has a 47.1 usage rate and a 69.6 TS% for 29 points. Add that to his other stats, and you’re looking at 1.74 DFS points per minute. That cupcake is more delicious than what Russell Westbrook has been baking.

 

You’re obviously plugging in KD at any chance you get for DFS.



Mike Gallagher has covered fantasy hoops for eight years and this season is his second with Rotoworld. You can find him on Twitter talking about a player's shots at the rim.



Highest Searched Players over the last 7 days



Video Center

  •  
    Dose: Wentz returns for PHI

    Dose: Wentz returns for PHI
  •  
    Dose: Mahomes dazzles

    Dose: Mahomes dazzles
  •  
    Player News: Week 2

    Player News: Week 2
  •  
    SNF Success for Engram?

    SNF Success for Engram?
  •  
    Dose: Green Dominates

    Dose: Green Dominates
  •  
    MLB: Find Frazier

    MLB: Find Frazier
  •  
    Dose: Gruden supports Carr

    Dose: Gruden supports Carr
  •  
    Dose: Olsen

    Dose: Olsen's injury