Player News - Trail Blazers

Date: Team: Pos:

Damian Lillard scored 29 points with one rebound, four assists, one steal, one block and five 3-pointers during an 86-82 loss to the Kings on Friday.

This was a bad loss for the Blazers after they were starting to turn it on with their 4-2 run coming into this game. Lillard looked like he was going to have a huge night with a strong first quarter, but the Blazers as a team didn't score more than 22 points in any of the four quarters. Luckily for them, they get the Kings again on Saturday in Portland.
Nov 18 - 12:49 AM

Caleb Swanigan scored two points with four rebounds, one assist and one steal in just 10 minutes during his start against the Kings on Friday

Coach Terry Stotts has a quick hook for his unestablished players, so Swanigan has some work to do to earn his trust. He'll probably be out of the rotation once Al-Farouq Aminu (ankle) comes back.
Nov 18 - 12:38 AM

Shabazz Napier is averaging 20.2 minutes per game over the Blazers last four contests.

Prior to last week, Napier had been a DNP-CD in three straight games and was averaging fewer than five minutes per contest. And last season, according to nbawowy.com, Dame Lillard and C.J. McCollum were on the bench for only 149 of about 3,650 possible minutes, excluding games where Lillard was injured or both players rested. However, over the last week, Stotts has experimented with Napier and Evan Turner in the backcourt. Napier is not yet worthy of a roster spot in standard leagues, but he would have value if Lillard or McCollum missed time.
Nov 17 - 11:36 AM

Al-Farouq Aminu (ankle) remains out for Friday's game against the Kings.

He was expected to miss 2-3 weeks back on Nov. 3, so he's likely going to be on the back end of that or perhaps even later. It looks like Caleb Swanigan will have another chance to start and Moe Harkless should handle some minutes at the four as well.
Nov 16 - 10:10 PM

Pat Connaughton started the second half of Wednesday's game but finished with just two points, two assists and one rebound in 12 minutes.

Connaughton was basically a placeholder in the second half and he didn't play the final 17 minutes of a close game, as Terry Stotts opted to play Shabazz Napier a ton down the stretch. It would take a few injuries for Connaughton to spring loose as a fantasy asset.
Nov 16 - 2:01 AM

Evan Turner struggled on Wednesday, going 2-of-9 from the field for five points, one rebound and one assist in 23 minutes.

Turner came averaging 13.7 points in his previous three games, and we've seen him flop before only to quickly bounce back. He's been a borderline fantasy option this season, but the rise of Shabazz Napier as a backup ball-handler is a direct threat to Turner's value. It's a situation we'll watch closely in the coming weeks.
Nov 16 - 1:56 AM

Shabazz Napier tied his career-high with five 3-pointers on Wednesday, finishing with 19 points on 7-of-12 shooting, three steals, two assists and one block in 27 minutes.

Blazers coach Terry Stotts praised Napier before the game, saying, "He’s had three good games in a row ... Getting him on the court, in various capacities, is something that will probably continue." During the preseason, Stotts even "toyed with" the idea of having Napier run the show while Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum both rest. Owners in deeper leagues shouldn't hesitate to grab him in case he manages to stick in a 20-minute role.
Nov 16 - 1:52 AM

Caleb Swanigan started on Wednesday, but he was benched after halftime and finished scoreless with one turnover and no other stats in six minutes.

Pat Connaughton started the second half instead of Swanigan. Terry Stotts clearly didn't like what he saw early, matchup-wise, and the Blazers leaned on a lot of small lineups tonight. The result was a victory, which doesn't bode well for Swanigan, but we'll see if he can bounce back vs. the Kings on Friday.
Nov 16 - 1:50 AM

Meyers Leonard didn't leave the Blazers' bench on Wednesday.

Leonard recently missed time with an ankle injury, but he hasn't been on the injury report the past two games. We're assuming he's just not part of the rotation.
Nov 16 - 1:49 AM

Damian Lillard helped the Blazers stave off the Magic on Wednesday for a 99-94 victory, posting 26 points, a season-high 11 rebounds, seven assists and five 3-pointers.

Dame is on the cusp of first-round value, thanks in part to career-high averages in rebounds (5.6), steals (1.3), FT percentage (93.1%), and even blocks (0.5). He's scoring 24.4 points per game despite shooting 40.4%, which would be a career-low, and when his accuracy goes up his fantasy value will follow suit.
Nov 16 - 1:49 AM

Coach Terry Stotts said Caleb Swanigan would remain in the starting lineup for Wednesday's game vs. Orlando.

Swanigan made his first career start Monday vs. Denver, sending Noah Vonleh to the bench. Swanigan logged 20 minutes and finished with six points, five rebounds, one assist and two blocks. He'll be an intriguing DFS tournament option on Wednesday, but owners in standard leagues can probably afford to exercise patience and see Swanigan can maintain his starting spot before considering plucking him off the wire.
Nov 14 - 11:25 AM

Damian Lillard scored 15 points vs. the Nuggets on Monday, adding seven assists, five rebounds, four steals, two triples and four turnovers in 34 minutes.

Lillard only hit 4-of-14 shots, but nailed all five of his freebies from the line. He's in a bit of a rut over his last three games with 15.3 points on 32.6 percent shooting, but it's just a matter of time before he heats up again.
Nov 14 - 12:44 AM

Noah Vonleh was productive off the bench on Monday vs. Denver, scoring eight points with 10 rebounds, one assist, one block and two steals in 26 minutes.

Maybe he didn't like getting benched in favor of Caleb Swanigan, as this was his best game of the season. Swanigan looked solid as well, but the rookie had five fouls which led to more run for Vonleh. This game doesn't the move the needle much and we'll need to see a couple more performances like this before we could get behind a pickup in deeper leagues.
Nov 14 - 12:39 AM

Moe Harkless scored two points with three rebounds, two assists, one steal and one block in 20 minutes vs. Denver on Monday.

Harkless was one of the most improved players in the NBA last season, but he hasn't looked quite right in 2017-18. Despite playing nearly 30 minutes per game, Harkless' season averages (prior to Monday) of 7.3 points, 4.4 rebounds, 0.9 blocks, 0.9 steals and 0.7 triples just aren't getting it done for most fantasy owners.
Nov 14 - 12:37 AM

Jusuf Nurkic scored 17 points (7-of-15 FGs, 3-of-4 FTs) against his former Nuggets in a 99-82 win on Monday, adding five rebounds, one assist and one block in 30 minutes.

He's now 2-0 against his old teammates. Nurk was forcing things tonight with revenge on his mind, turning the ball over a season-high seven times. The good news is that he seemed healthy after struggling with a lower back issue over the weekend, and he played twice the amount of minutes as Ed Davis (four points and seven rebounds in 15 minutes). Next up for Portland is a home game against Orlando on Wednesday before a back-to-back set against the Kings this weekend.
Nov 14 - 12:33 AM


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