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Date: Team: Pos:

Markieff Morris struggled with fouls yet again on Wednesday, contributing eight points, five boards and one block with five personal fouls in 20 minutes.

With former VP Joe Biden in attendance, the Wizards held on for a tense 103-99 victory, giving them a 3-2 edge in the series. Morris is averaging 5.0 fouls in just 23.3 minutes over the past four games, and he's shooting 33.3 percent in that span. The Wizards will need more from him going forward, especially if Jason Smith (calf) is forced to miss any time.
Apr 26 - 9:41 PM

Bradley Beal had 27 points on 11-of-22 shooting, five rebounds, three steals, three blocks, one assist and one steal in 41 minutes on Wednesday.

The Hawks haven't had any answers for Beal or John Wall in this series. Wizards coach Scott Brooks said afterward, "I think [Beal] is one of the best two-way players in the league," and among shooting guards it's hard to disagree. Wall added 20 points and 14 assists, with another highlight-reel dunk (see the link below), and the Wizards' star backcourt has them one game away from advancing to the second round.
Apr 26 - 9:38 PM

Marcin Gortat scored five points in 39 minutes during Game 5, grabbing 10 rebounds with three blocks and one assist to help the Wizards hold on for a victory.

Gortat attempted his first free throws of the series midway through the fourth quarter, after playing 163 postseason minutes with zero attempts. That fact played to the Hawks' advantage since Gortat is a career 67.9 percent shooter from the line, and he was even worse this season (to his credit, he made 3-of-4 tonight). He's found different ways to contribute in the playoffs, but over the past three games he's averaging a mere 3.0 points on 3-of-14 shooting, which is brutal for DFS purposes.
Apr 26 - 9:34 PM

Otto Porter scored 17 points during Wednesday's 103-99 home victory, adding five rebounds, two steals, one assist, one block and zero turnovers in 31 minutes.

These are the type of efficient, all-around lines that made Porter a super-sleeper in roto leagues this season. He went 3-of-4 from the line tonight, with a pair of 3-pointers, and did most of his damage at the free throw line (9-of-10). He becomes just the third player since 1963 to score at least 17 points on four or fewer attempts in the playoffs, joining Doc Rivers and Jon Koncak.
Apr 26 - 9:30 PM

Dennis Schroder posted his first double-double of the playoffs on Wednesday with 29 points, 11 assists and two steals, making 10-of-18 FGs and 4-of-5 FTs with a 5-of-6 mark from downtown.

Schroder was huge down the stretch and he committed just one turnover tonight, compared to his regular-season average of 3.3 per game. He's thriving in the postseason spotlight, which is critical since Atlanta's alternatives are 35-year-old Jose Calderon and undrafted rookie Malcolm Delaney. "All year we’ve expected so much of Dennis and he may have tried to do too much on occasion," coach Mike Budenholzer said. "Right now he’s being very aggressive, getting people involved, moving the ball, making good decisions." Expect more of the same in a must-win Game 6 on Friday.
Apr 26 - 9:29 PM

Kent Bazemore faded on Wednesday with just six points on 3-of-12 shooting, two boards and two assists in 23 minutes off the bench.

Bazemore had 16 points, seven assists, four rebounds and three steals on Monday, but he never found a rhythm during Atlanta's road loss tonight. He's shooting 17-of-47 in the series (36.2 percent), and is tough to trust for DFS since he's averaging a modest 24.2 minutes through five games.
Apr 26 - 9:26 PM

Paul Millsap notched 21 points (8-of-19 FGs, 5-of-6 FTs), 11 rebounds and two assists in 35 minutes during the Hawks' loss in D.C. on Wednesday.

Millsap has been a major problem for the Wizards throughout this series, but that hasn't stopped Markieff Morris from continually insulting him -- he even labeled Millsap a 'crybaby', and the Wizards' in-house music played the Rugrats theme song when he checked into the game late. That ridiculous sub-plot aside, Millsap has provided the same All-Star caliber play we've come to expect. It'll be interesting to see what the 32-year-old forward commands in free agency this summer, since he'll almost certainly turn down his $21.5 million player option.
Apr 26 - 9:25 PM

Dwight Howard followed up Monday's big game with five points, 10 rebounds, two assists, one steal and one block during a Game 5 loss in Washington.

Dwight struggled with fouls throughout the game and he finished just 2-of-3 from the field and 1-of-4 from the FT line. He shot 63.3 percent from the field this season and Atlanta needs more from him to climb out of a 3-2 series deficit -- if you ignore Game 4, Dwight is averaging 5.8 points in the series. For what it's worth, his hard fall during Game 3 hasn't limited whatsoever.
Apr 26 - 9:24 PM

Jason Smith didn't return after exiting Wednesday's game in the second half with a left calf contusion, finishing with five points and two rebounds in 16 minutes.

Smith crashed into the basket stanchion prior to exiting. He jogged into the locker room but had his left leg iced when he returned to the bench, and we'll have to wait for updates before determining his status for Game 6 on Friday. If he misses more time, Marcin Gortat's minutes should increase and the Wizards will be forced to run plenty of small lineups.
Apr 26 - 8:29 PM

Coach Fred Hoiberg said the decision to start Isaiah Canaan has to do with defense against Isaiah Thomas.

Makes sense. Michael Carter-Williams was brought on for his defense, but IT has turned him into a pretzel throughout this series. Canaan did come in at 80 on defensive real plus minus for the 91 qualifying point guards during the season, and he's certainly had some bad runs in Chicago and in Philly. Canaan played 34 minutes in Game 4 and should be looking at decent minutes again today. He's an obvious DFS punt.
Apr 26 - 7:10 PM

Cameron Payne is inactive again for Game 5 on Wednesday.

The Bulls will go with Isaiah Canaan as the starter and coach Fred Hoiberg will have to figure out what to do after that. Considering how bad Jerian Grant and Michael Carter-Williams have been, Payne not getting a shot isn't the best sign. The Bulls will probably roll with some no-PG lineups.
Apr 26 - 7:04 PM

General manager Tim Connelly said the top priority is to bring back Danilo Gallinari for next season.

"You never know how the market is going to progress," Connelly said. There is a lot to this story with Gallo having a $16.1 million player option, and also Connelly said the Nuggets need to add more perimeter defense around Nikola Jokic. Gallinari cleared the 60-game mark for just the second time since joining the Nuggets for a full season in 2011-12, so it makes sense for him to hit the market at age 28. Plus, Juancho Hernangomez probably deserves more minutes for a litany of reasons.
Apr 26 - 6:59 PM

General manager Tim Connelly said Mason Plumlee "is going to be a huge piece of our core."

Connelly said he's still happy with the Jusuf Nurkic and Plumlee deal, which is part of the reason the Nuggets didn't make the playoffs. The Blazers were happy to let Plumlee go because of his upcoming restricted free agency, but the Nuggets do look like they want to sign him. He'll be backing up Nikola Jokic, especially after the Jokic-Plumlee lineups were not working later in the season.
Apr 26 - 6:52 PM

Jaylen Brown (illness) is available to play against the Bulls in Game 5 on Wednesday.

He missed practice on Tuesday and was called probable to play an hour ago. It's been Terry Rozier taking minutes away from Brown as coach Brad Stevens looks to make Marcus Smart more of an off-ball guy in the second unit, so Brown's minutes may not be there today.
Apr 26 - 6:49 PM

General manager Tim Connelly said Jamal Murray will have surgery for a couple of different injuries.

Presumably, one of those injuries is going to be his sports hernia he played through for most of his rookie season. Even with the injuries, Murray busted out in April, averaging 15.1 points, 3.6 boards, 5.0 assists, 1.3 steals and 1.6 treys on 44.9 percent from the field and perfect free throw shooting. Assuming these surgeries won't affect him in a couple months, Murray is going to be a popular target in drafts.
Apr 26 - 6:16 PM


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