Week 14 Schedule (Games Played)
4 Games: BKN, DET, IND, LAL, MEM, MIA, NYK, SAS, TOR, UTA
3 Games: ATL, BOS, CHA, CHI, CLE, DEN, GSW, HOU, LAC, MIL, MIN, NOR, OKC, ORL, PHI, POR, SAC, WAS
2 Games: DAL, PHX
The Return of the Dragon
Goran Dragic led the Heat to their seventh straight win on Sunday, scoring 25 points on 9-of-17 shooting (3-of-4 from the stripe) to go with four 3-pointers, three rebounds, two assists, one steal and two turnovers in 33 minutes. He went into Dragon-mode in the fourth, posting a 38.8 usage rate while scoring 11 of his 25 points, and he’s been a huge factor for Miami in this recent seven-game win streak. After a terrible start to the year, The Dragon has finally started to get going, flirting with top-60 value in 9-cat leagues over the past seven behind averages of 21.9 points, 2.1 triples, 5.1 rebounds, 6.9 dimes, 0.9 steals and 2.9 turnovers per game on 46.6% shooting from the field and 76.2% from the stripe. The Heat need this version of Dragic with Dion Waiters (ankle) done for the year, and there’s no reason why he shouldn’t be able to keep this up.
King of New York
Anthony Davis was simply incredible during Sunday’s 123-118 overtime win over the Knicks, exploding for a season-high 48 points on 17-of-30 shooting (12-of-15 from the stripe) to go with 17 rebounds, two 3-pointers, four steals, three blocks and four turnovers in 50 minutes. The Knicks had precisely zero answers for Davis, who drained circus shot after circus shot including a full-court heave that came off his fingers just a second too late to end the third, and he was a man possessed after halftime, rocking a 40.9 usage rate while essentially single-handedly helping the Pelicans erase a 19-point halftime deficit. He did have a few injury scares in the game, once with his left leg when he got caught up with Tim Hardaway Jr. on a THJ drive to the hoop and again during overtime when he took an elbow to the face on a Kristaps Porzingis jumper, but he didn’t miss any game-time action with either issue, so I’d expect him to be fine for Monday’s game in Atlanta.
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Jimmy Butler netted a game-high 24 points on 7-of-11 shooting (9-of-11 from the line) during Sunday’s easy win over the Trail Blazers, adding five boards, one 3-pointer, four assists, two steals and zero turnovers in 34 minutes. Buckets was thoroughly impressive through the final frame of action, generating a 49.4 usage rate and 66.7 assist percentage, and he’s been a major factor in Minnesota’s current five-game win streak with averages of 21.0 points, 6.2 boards, 6.2 dimes, 1.8 trey-bombs, 2.0 turnovers and an elite 2.6 steals per contest on 53.1% shooting from the field and 82.4% from the charity stripe. Remember when people were panicking about whether or not Butler would be able to fit in in Minnesota? Congrats if you bought low.
On the Radar
Tyler Johnson had another solid outing on Sunday, scoring 14 points on 5-of-11 shooting (1-of-1 from the line) to go with three 3-pointers, six rebounds, one assist, one steal, one block and zero turnovers over 35 minutes. He’s been a mid-round guy ever since Dion Waiters (ankle) hit the sidelines, pumping out averages of 16.0 points, 2.3 assists, 1.8 triples, 1.1 steals and just 0.8 turnovers per contest on 45.4% shooting from the field and 88.9% from the stripe, and with no one on the roster to truly challenge him for minutes, the good times should continue for Johnson.
Jarrett Jack netted a season-high 22 points on 9-of-14 shooting (2-of-2 from the line) Sunday, to go with four rebounds, eight assists, two 3-pointers, three steals and five turnovers in 37 minutes. He’s been connecting on a ridiculous 61.7 percent of his shots over the past four games to go with averages of 17.0 points, 8.5 assists, 1.0 triple, 1.5 steals and 3.8 turnovers per game. The scoring probably isn’t sustainable, and at some point, he figures to lose his starting spot to Frank Ntilikina, but he’s worth owning in most leagues while he’s playing this well.
Isaiah Canaan (groin) returned from a three-game stint on the sidelines, tallying 13 points (3-of-6 FGs, 5-of-7 FTs), two 3-pointers, two rebounds, two assists and three turnovers in 20 minutes off the bench. He’s not the most exciting guy to own, but with averages of 9.4 points, 1.2 treys, 4.3 assists and 1.4 turnovers per game on 42.1% shooting, he has some low-end appeal as a dimes-specialist in deep leagues.
Josh Jackson (hip, groin) started sans T.J. Warren (back) in his return from a one-game absence on Sunday, registering 21 points (7-of-16 FGs, 5-of-5 FTs), two 3-pointers, six rebounds, three assists and two turnovers in 30 minutes. He’s been playing much better since the calendar turned to 2018, churning out averages of 15.8 points, 5.8 rebounds, 3.0 assists, 1.8 triples, 0.5 steals, 0.5 blocks and 1.8 turnovers per game on 47.1% shooting from the field and 72.7% from the stripe. Like most rookies, shooting percentages have been an issue for Jackson this season, but as you can see, he’s capable of putting up solid value when his shot is dropping and he gets meaningful minutes. If both Warren and Marquese Chriss (hip) can’t play on Tuesday in Portland, Jackson could be someone to think about as a streamer or DFS punt play.
An MRI revealed a minor left knee sprain for Lonzo Ball and he’s questionable to play Monday vs. Memphis. The Lakers have been cautious with Ball this season, so there’s certainly a chance he could sit out the Lakers’ MLK Day game, which would result in more minutes for Jordan Clarkson, Tyler Ennis and Josh Hart. Owners can expect to get another update following Monday morning’s shootaround.
Brandon Ingram (ankle) is also questionable for Monday’s game, and he’s another guy who will be updated after shootaround. Kyle Kuzma and Julius Randle will benefit most if Ingram is forced to the sidelines.
Mike D’Antoni said that James Harden (hamstring) could return as soon as Thursday vs. the Timberwolves or Saturday vs. the Warriors. He’s close, and once he’s back out there, Eric Gordon will shift back to the second unit and Gerald Green could lose most of his value.
Luc Mbah a Moute (shoulder) practiced on Sunday and could return for Monday’s game against the Clippers.
DeAndre Jordan (ankle) is questionable to face the Rockets on Monday. If he’s out again, Willie Reed would have another opportunity to start with Montrezl Harrell picking up extended minutes with the second unit.
Justise Winslow (knee) looked fine in his return from a month-long layoff, scoring three points on 1-of-4 shooting to go with four boards, four assists and one 3-pointer in 13 minutes off the bench. He’s not worth owning in most leagues.
Tim Hardaway Jr. appeared to tweak his left leg (yes, that’s the one that had the stress reaction) on the final possession of New York’s overtime loss to New Orleans on Sunday, finishing with 25 points, two 3-pointers, five boards, three assists, three steals and three turnovers in 33 minutes. THJ was able to get back to the locker room under his own power, but he was sporting a limp, so it wouldn’t be shocking it the Knicks’ decided to play it safe and hold him out on Monday in Brooklyn.
D’Angelo Russell (knee) will not play Monday vs. the Kings. He’s reportedly looked good while going through 3-on-3 work but hasn’t yet participated in 5-on-5 drills, and he won’t be playing until he clears that hurdle. He’s close, though, and needs to be stashed everywhere.
Evan Turner (illness) was back in the starting lineup following a one-game absence, finishing with eight points (2-of-6 FGs, 4-of-4 FTs), three rebounds, one assist, one steal and four turnovers in 23 minutes.
Marco Belinelli (ankle) is expected to play Monday vs. San Antonio.
Andre Roberson (knee) was a full participant during Sunday’s light practice, but he will remain on the sidelines for Monday’s game vs. the Kings.
76ers’ head coach Brett Brown said that Markelle Fultz (shoulder) is still dealing with pain in his shoulder, and it seems like there’s a real possibility that we won’t see Fultz at all this season. I wouldn’t recommend stashing him anywhere.
Tyler Zeller (hip) is probable to play Monday vs. New York.
Stanley Johnson (hip) is questionable to play Monday vs. the Hornets.
Raul Neto (knee) is questionable to play Monday vs. Indiana.