It has been a rather quiet Monday with four games on the schedule. The Raptors beat out the Nuggets with Lowry and DeRozan closing out the game. The Hawks edged out the Kings in the fourth quarter with a balanced effort led by Dwight. And lastly, both the Bulls and the Clippers are now 3-0. Aside from the games tonight. We got some news on Ricky Rubio and his sprained right elbow. He’s being listed out indefinitely but fortunately it isn’t a broken elbow. It’s the Kris Dunn era now and should be owned in all leagues. Let’s take a look at the winners and losers from the games tonight.
Stud of the Night: Tonight’s stud goes to Chris Paul of the Clippers. After only having 9 points in his previous game, he bounced back and had an efficient 24 points on 8-15 shooting and 6-7 from the line. He also added 5 rebounds, 8 assists with 2 steals and 2 triples on 2 turnovers. He’s the most efficient point guard in the league and for owners who drafted him in the first round, this is the CP3 that you drafted for. It’s clear that he’s attempting more threes this year and that might boost his value a little bit. More performances like this and he’ll be back to first round value in no time.
Kyle Lowry – 29 points (10-20 FG, 8-10 FT), 5 rebounds, 7 assists, 3 steals and a triple with 3 turnovers. Lowry was getting to the paint tonight and hit every shot but one inside that area. He also scored most of his points in the fourth quarter and closed out the game for the Raptors. Lowry hasn’t been off to a blistering start but now that he’s in his tenth year in the league, he’s starting to pace himself for the playoffs. He was shooting 27.5% from the field before the win against the Nuggets. Now that he’s found his footing, hopefully he can continue to this type of efficient performance for the Raptors.
Nikola Mirotic – 16 points (6-14 FG), 10 rebounds, 3 assists, 4 triples, 3 blocks with 3 turnovers. Mirotic is the first guy off the bench and is playing the 6th man role on the team. He’s closing out games with Gibson on the floor too which means the biggest loser in this situation is Robin Lopez. Heading into this season, I expected the Bulls needed every bit of Mirotic’s ability to stretch the floor but with Wade and Butler hitting threes the spacing problem hasn’t surfaced up yet. As the season goes on, I don’t expect the Bulls to remain this hot and they’ll regress to the mean which means Mirotic will be needed.
DeAndre Jordan – 19 points (8-10 FG, 3-6 FT), 11 rebounds 2 assists, 2 blocks and a steal. After he was mentioned in the Fool’s Gold section, DJ finally had a good game to shut the critics up. His sore thumb didn’t seem like a problem and was dunking balls harder than ever. This was the DJ owners drafted for, high field goal, high rebounds and a couple of blocks. The points are an add-on from him but this is a good first step towards the right direction.
Will Barton – 16 points (5-7 FG, 4-5 FT), 4 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 triples and a block with no turnovers. This was nearly a perfect line for Barton today in the tough loss against the Raptors. The unfortunate news is that he was helped to the locker room and couldn’t finish the game. X-rays were negative on his left ankle but it looked pretty bad. Barton needed this opportunity to step up with Gary Harris is out but now seems like the biggest beneficiary for the remaining games Harris is out is Jamal Murray. Owners should stick with Barton until further news are out.
Fool’s Gold: DeMarcus Cousins was a beast in his first three games both offensively and defensively. Tonight against the Hawks, he looked like his head wasn’t in the game. Either it was the suspension that got to him or the combo of Dwight and Millsap really bothered him. He finished the game with 14 points on 6-of-16 shooting and 1-of-3 from the line. He added 12 rebounds, a triple and a block with 4 turnovers. The points are a season low and the turnovers are a season high. It was an off night for Boogie and he’ll bounce back with the four games they still have this week.
Dud of the Night: Rondae Hollis-Jefferson dropped a few duds already and tonight in a blowout loss against the Bulls, he had 2 points on 1-7 shooting, 3 rebounds, 3 assists and a block with 2 turnovers. If you drafted RHJ, you were expecting some good source of rebounds, elite steals, and some blocks in a punt FT% team. Well he’s only averaging 3.75 rebounds, 0.5 steals and 0.5 blocks in the past 4 games. He’s also only made a total of four field goals in four games. He’s getting good minutes but he’s not really producing. I think it’s time to cut bait if you have someone else on your waiver that’s a must grab.
Nikola Jokic – 12 points (6-9 FG), 4 rebounds, an assists and 4 turnovers. After a strong performance in his previous game, Jokic only played 22 minutes against the Raptors. He was bothered by foul trouble and the Nuggets went small a lot with Jusuf Nurkic playing center. That’s two games where he played less than 25 minutes out of three. With Faried and Nurkic bothering Jokic’s playing time, it also doesn’t help when Mike Malone decides to go small with Gallo or Wilson Chandler at the four. Unless Faried or Chandler gets traded or injured, I think we’ll see this problem resurface again.
Brook Lopez – 13 points (5-11 FG, 3-3 FT), 2 rebounds and a block in 22 minutes. Lopez is averaging 22.5 minutes per game and he even sat one out with DNP-Rest. He’s in Kenny Atkinson’s dog house and seems like he’s going to experience more DNP’s since they don’t really have anything else to play for. The good news from today is that he’s not really benched because of poor performances but because they were blown out by Chicago already in the first quarter. His minutes will eventually go up but the Nets are looking at the big picture instead.
Waiver Wire Gems:
Isaiah Canaan (1% owned) – 15 points (5-7 FG, 2-2 FT), 3 rebounds, 6 assists, 3 triples, a steal in 22 minutes. This stat line came in garbage time where the Bulls were blowing the Nets out since the game began. Canaan only played in 14 and 7 minutes in the previous two games. It seems like MCW is out and I’m guessing its a couple of weeks. Canaan will get more run but not worthy of a pick up just yet.
Jameer Nelson (1% owned) – 13 points (5-9 FG), 2 rebounds, 1 assist, 3 triples, and a steal in 22 minutes. Barton was carried off and couldn’t finish the game. If Barton were to miss time, Mike Malone might play more of Mudiay and Nelson together. He’s a cheap source of assists and steals for deep leagues.
Thabo Sefolosha (7% owned) – 4 points (2-5 FG), 6 rebounds, 3 assists, 4 steals in 24 minutes. Second time Sefolosha is mentioned here. He’s been averaging 20.5 minutes per game and been a very good passer for the Hawks’ second unit. But his true value comes from his ridiculously high steals, averaging 3.3 thefts per game. He’s also a good source of rebounds so basically in 20.5 minutes per game, he’s basically what you expected out of RHJ.
Kosta Koufos – (3% owned) – 4 points (2-5 FG), 8 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals and 2 blocks in 25 minutes. He’s the starting PF/C for the Kings and has been getting 20+ minutes in the last three games. He’s also averaging 7.7 rebounds during that span so he’s a cheap source of rebounds and blocks. The Kings still have four more games this week so you might want him on a streaming spot.
That’s it for Monday’s FFF. Hope you guys had a good start to your week. Follow me on Twitter for more updates or to ask me any questions about your fantasy team!