What a night in the NBA! 11 games and filled with interesting and competitive match ups. Lot’s of interesting things happened tonight especially with the James Harden vs Russell Westbrook matchup but somehow both of them did not come out winners in that game. Also some injury news tonight, particularly to the Mavs with Deron Williams and J.J. Barea leaving the game. There’s a ton to talk about so let’s get to the winners and losers.
Stud of the Night: The stud of the night goes to Mike Conley. In a matchup between the two most reliable point guards in Conley and Paul, the underdog Conley got the better hand and came out with the win. He 30 points on 9-of-12 shooting along with 5 rebounds, 8 assists, 7 triples and 3 steals. That’s the second time this season Conley hit 7 threes and he’s clearly thriving under Fizdale’s offense. There’s still some occasional throw the ball down low to Z-Bo and Marc for them to go to work but Conley’s usage rate is at a career high 26.4 percent before entering into this game, while last year he was at 22.4 percent. He’ll take the occasional maintenance day but he’s having top-20 value for the season.
Victor Oladipo – 29 points (12-18 FG), 10 rebounds, 5 assists, 5 threes, 2 steals and 3 turnovers. It was all about Harden vs Westbrook tonight but Oladipo was the biggest winner coming from tonight’s game. He was big tonight and even hit a big three in the fourth to tie the game when things were getting stalemate. Consistency is an issue with Oladipo this season but he has shown signs that he could coexist with Westbrook well especially with nights like this one. Stat lines like this lets owners know that he has potential to live up to his second round ADP. This was clearly his best game of the season and it’s coming after a dud of 9 points two days ago. A sign of good things to come maybe?
Kristaps Porzingis – 35 points (13-22 FG, 6-7 FT), 7 rebounds, 3 assists, 3 triples, a steal and a block with a turnover. This was a career high in points from Porzingis and he did most of his damage in the first half, showing his array of offensive moves. It was his first 30-point effort since his career started in the NBA. He also got some MVP chants in the Garden. He’s averaging 20.7 points, 6.8 rebounds, 2.2 threes and 1.4 blocks on 49.7 percent shooting per game. The points, threes and blocks are expected but the efficiency of how he’s getting his points is outstanding this season. He’s returning second round value and is playing to his ADP. He’s already this good in his second season, the sky’s the limit for this kid.
Stephen Curry – 35 points (10-19 FG, 12-13 FT), 3 rebounds, 7 assists, 3 triples and a steal with 3 turnovers. Business as usual for Curry tonight in an interesting matchup against Kyle Lowry. He’s scored 30 or more points with 50+ percent shooting in his last three games. His shooting struggles are clearly over and what’s even scarier is that his percentage from threes increased from 45.4 percent from last season to 47.5 percent this season. Last season he was the first player ever accomplishing 50-45-90 and it’s crazy to think that this guy can be better. He’s breaking barriers with his shooting and we’re witnessing something special.
Kawhi Leonard – 20 points (7-14 FG, 2-2 FT), 6 rebounds, 4 triples, 4 steals and a turnover. Kawhi’s cooled off after a hot start but he’s still a top-5 player in 9-cat. His percentages took a hit and seems like he’s forcing more shots or trying to draw a foul. Tonight, he looked patient and he let the offense go to him so it’s good to see him back being mentioned here. What’s even more encouraging is that Kawhi, LaMarcus and Pau all had 20 point efforts in tonight’s win.
Dud of the Night: Tonight’s dud of the night goes to the Moose, Greg Monroe. He scored 4 points and grabbed 3 rebounds in 7 minutes of play. He looked like a moose in a herd of deers, the odd man out in that roster. With Plumlee’s recent demotion for Henson to start, you’d expect Monroe to play more a little bit but that wasn’t the case. I really believe that Monroe will get traded before the deadline, well I think the Bucks want to trade him but whether a team wants to have Monroe on their team is another question to be asked. He’s returning top-70 value this season but for the last three games, he’s only averaging 16.1 minutes per game. Owners need to hold on to him and wish he gets traded.
Waiver Wire Gems:
Jon Leuer (26% owned) – 17 points (7-11 FG, 1-1 FT), 9 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 triples and a steal in 27 minutes. I like Leuer and I picked him up in my leagues too. He’s carved himself a nice role off the bench and getting consistent minutes. SVG is rotating Harris, Morris and Leuer at the 3 and 4 spot and sometimes Leuer is also getting some center minutes too. He’s versatile and SVG made a clear statement to tell him to be more aggressive. He’s returning top-75 value for the season, averaging 26.9 minutes with 10.7 points, 6.9 rebounds, 0.8 three and 0.8 blocks with really good percentages. He won’t hurt you in anything and makes him a decent roto-guy.
Andre Iguodala (24% owned) – 10 points (4-10 FG), 3 rebounds, 6 assists, 2 triples, 2 steals and a block in 25 minutes. Iggy has been hard to own in standard leagues. With the Dubs staggering their stars with the second unit, it’s hard for Iggy to find usage rate in those line ups. He’s still getting solid minutes, averaging 24.8 minutes per game but averaging a career low in attempts and field goal percentage. He’s been getting good assists and steals to help his value a little bit though so he’s worth a look in deep leagues if you’re in need of those stats
Richaun Holmes (1% owned) – 8 points (3-3 FG), 3 rebounds, 2 assists, 3 steals and 2 triples. Holmes got some rotation minutes tonight, mainly due to Embiid resting in a back-to-back set. His only opportunities come in Embiid or Okafor out resting so it’s tough to own him in leagues. He’s a good streamer when the Sixers have a b2b sets.
Pelicans vs Magic
- Anthony Davis missed his first game of the season and probably will have more to come. Terrence Jones stepped up in his place with 26 points and 9 rebounds. Galloway added 15 points with 3 triples. It’s sad when these two guys are your leading scorer on your team, but they almost won.
- The Pelicans almost won because they were up against the Magic. Vooch finally had a double double with 10 points and 14 boards. Ibaka had a solid game with 16 points and 8 rebounds with 2 triples, no blocks though. Aaron Gordon is still coming off the bench and he had 10 points and a little bit of everything.
Wizards vs Sixers
- The Wizards lost to the Sixers. This is bad. Bradley Beal still missing time and it was Sheldon McClellan who got the start again but cooled off this game. Otto Porter played 41 minutes with 15 points, 13 rebounds and 4 steals. John Wall led the team in scoring with 27-4-6. Something’s up with his assists numbers and they’re taking a really significant hit.
- Ersan is continuing his consistent play with 16 points and 4 triples (wow! Ersan and consistent in the same sentence). He also got the start tonight ahead of Saric. Sergio Rodriguez handed a career high 12 assists tonight. And Sauce Castillo is continuing his string of double digit games and that count is up to 4 with 15 points tonight.
Cavalier vs Pacers
- LeBron sat out tonight so it was up to Kevin Love 27 points, 16 rebounds and 4 triples. And Kyrie Irving, 24 points and 7 assists. Channing Frye cooled off but still hit 2 triples and the rest of the team didn’t contribute much.
- Paul George led the Pacers with 21 points, 11 rebounds, 5 assists, 3 triples and 2 steals. That’s an encouraging sign for owners. Jeff Teague played well with 20 points and 8 assists. Monta Ellis blocked a career high 5 swats and I’m not sure where that came from.
Bucks vs Hawks
- Jabari bounced back and had 23 points and 8 rebounds. He’s still money at the free throw line this season so that’s helping his value. The Greek Freak is continuing his splendid play with 26-15-7. Owners who took him in the first round is cashing it in.
- Millsap finally has a good game with 21 points, 8 rebounds, 3 steals and 2 blocks. However, Dwight wasn’t playing this game. This game could be a confidence booster so it’ll be interesting to see how he performs when Dwight returns.
Mavericks vs Boston
- Mavericks are finding it hard to put points on the board, only breaking the 100 point barrier two times this season. Wesley Matthews finally had a good game though with 22 points and 6 triples. Harrison Barnes is still scoring a lot of points while being very efficient. Both Deron Williams and J.J. Barea left the game so Seth Curry gets an obvious bump if they miss any time.
- Celtics got carried by Thomas tonight with 30 points. Avery Bradley grabbed a career high 13 rebounds while also adding 18 points. He’s grabbed double digit rebounds in 5 of his last 7 games. It’ll take a hit when Horford comes back though.
Pistons vs Knicks
- KCP led the way with 21 points and Tobias Harris is starting to heat up with 19 and 10 after a poor run last week. Drummond returned after missing a game with 15 points and 9 rebounds.
- The Knicks pulled off an impressive win against the Pistons tonight. Melo is having a string of games where he’s being very efficient. He dropped 22 points with 4 triples tonight. Noah hauled in 15 rebounds while adding 7 points.
Warriors vs Raptors
- Durant had another solid game with an efficient 30 points and 9 rebounds. Klay had a poor shooting night but owners shouldn’t be complaining since he was real hot for the past four games.
- DeRozan had another 34 point effort and is leading the league in scoring. He also made 17-of-17 from free throws. Lowry also had 24 points and he’s starting to ramp up his workload now. He’s played 41, 40 and 38 minutes in his last three games. That’s a lot of minutes for the 30 year old.
Rockets vs Thunder
- It was the battle of the one man show between Harden vs Westbrook. Westbrook came out on top with the win. He flirted with a triple double yet again with 30-7-9. Harden on the other hand was bothered by Roberson and had 13-7-13.
- Clint Capella stepped up with 13 points, 14 boards and 3 blocks. He also made 3-of-4 from the line so that’s kind of flukey.
Suns vs Nuggets
- Brandon Knight exploded for 32 points off the bench. The Suns ran the Bledsoe-Knight-Booker line up since Knight had the hot hand. This was his only good game for the season though.
- Jokic and Nurkic combined for 34 minutes tonight so that means Malone elected to have Faried as the center for 14 minutes of the game. I don’t know what to say anymore. They got the win so props to Malone. Faried had 20 points and 15 rebounds and is stringing a couple of solid games. Wilson Chandler also had a good game with 28 points and 11 rebounds. Don’t think things are going to change much for now.
Spurs vs Kings
- Pau Gasol led the spurs in scoring with 24 points and 9 rebounds. Aldridge added 21 points as well. These two scored 20 point games when they’re on the floor together. They both played more than 30 minutes tonight since the Spurs are a little thin in the front court with Dedmon missing out tonight.
- Boogie had 26-17-6 and could’ve had more if he didn’t have two quick early fouls in the first quarter. He didn’t get much help tonight though. Rudy Gay only had 11 points and shot 27.3 percent from the floor.
Grizzlies vs Clippers
- Just when you thought the Clippers gained the momentum after coming back from a deficit, Marc Gasol hit a crucial three to ice the game. He ended up with 26 points, 6 rebounds, 6 assists, 4 threes and 3 steals. He’s been on a tear from range and doesn’t seem likely to stop.
- Redick was shooting the Clips back into the game and was clearly on fire. He also had 7 threes in the game along with 29 points. After a slow start, he’s found his shooting stroke, averaging 20.3 points, 3.8 triples on 50.9 percent shooting in the last four games. While Chris Paul got outplayed and only had 9 points and 6 assists with 5 steals.
Hope you enjoyed today’s FFF. Stay tuned for more and follow me on Twitter for more updates and keep shooting questions at me for your fantasy team!