Nine games on a Friday night to start the weekend. The Heat won their 13th straight game. Nikola Jokic dropped 40 in MSG. Draymond Green recorded a special triple-double. The Lakers rubbed salt into Bucks’ wounds. Anthony Davis won the battle of the big men. Kings won a thrilling one after being down by 22. And more that I’m covering so let’s get to tonight’s games.
Heat 108 – Nets 99
The Heat won their 13th straight win as they came back from another double digit deficit. They are now one game away from the eighth spot after 13 win but their record is still 24-30, so it speaks volume to what kind of season Miami was having before this winning streak. James Johnson continued his strong performance of stuffing the stat sheet. He finished with 26 points, eight boards, three blocks and a steal in 35 minutes. He’s been on fire, returning top-20 value in the last two weeks and is isn’t getting enough credit for their recent success. After four straight double-doubles, Hassan Whiteside snapped that streak with eight points and nine boards. However, he did contribute four blocks tonight which is the highest since December 20th. His blocks has been pretty disappointing this season and he’s only a top-50 player in the last month. Rodney McGruder has been getting minutes for this Heat’s team because of his defense. He doesn’t really translate his playing time in to stats but he’s someone to keep an eye on. He finished with 11-6-3 with four steals and a triple. He’s now scored in double digits in three straight games and during that span, he’s made at least one triple with elite steals. Deep leagues might want to give him a look right now.
The Nets have now lost their 12th in a row. Since 2017, they’ve only won 1 out of 22 games. One constant that’s been working for them is that Brook Lopez is getting his numbers. He dropped 30 points with eight boards and two blocks on 10-of-17 shooting. His threes haven’t been dropping recently and along with his low rebounds and high turnovers, it’s really hurting his value. He’s only ranked 85 in the last two weeks. He’s a potential shut down candidate but if the fantasy playoffs in your league does not include the last two weeks of the regular season, Brook Lopez might be a good buy low player as the Nets have a good schedule. Trevor Booker has actually been grabbing a lot of rebounds while coming off the bench. He’s grabbed double-digit rebounds in four straight games while also averaging 11.8 points per game in that span. He’s not getting any steals and his free throws have been horrible. His value has plummeted drastically since his hot stretch to start the season. He’s still a good source of boards if you need them.
Nuggets 131 – Knicks 123
These Nuggets have such high scoring games and it’s fun to watch. It takes something special to have a big night in MSG and Nikola Jokic is something special. He finished with a career-high 40 point, nine boards, five dimes while adding two steals and two triples on 17-of-23 from the field in 37 minutes. That’s what happens if you give him minutes and he’s a legitimate stud. His incredible efficiency has elevated his game to a top-25 player and I believe he’s still climbing the ladder. Jameer Nelson started for Emmanuel Mudiay as he missed his third straight game with a back problem. Jameer Nelson had his best game since filling the starter role with 16-4-12 with four triples in 36 minutes. He’s a good short term add for when Mudiay misses time. There’s no time table to when he’s returning and he was only listed as questionable prior to this game. Darrell Arthur also started tonight for Kenneth Faried and he posted 13 points, three boards and three triples in 21 minutes. Arthur has been consistent with his 3-point shooting nowadays as he’s hit at least one in every game he’s played since December 17th. He’s a good big for some triples if you’re punting boards.
The Knicks are a mess and with all the drama surrounding Charles Oakley and that incident, it’s looking uglier and uglier by the minute. Even with all the drama and the rumours, Carmelo Anthony did his thing tonight as he dropped a 33-6-4 line with six triples and two steals. Winning solves anything and Melo was trying his best to get the win with 19 points in the fourth. He started at power forward tonight but I don’t think this will stick after giving up 131 points. Kyle O’Quinn suddenly leaped Willy Hernangomez in the pecking order again. O’Quinn got the bulk of the minutes tonight as he finished with 16-6-3 with four blocks in 22 minutes. Big Willy on the other hand only played 9 minutes with 12 points and four boards. Joakim Noah probably won’t return until after the All-Star break and Kristaps Porzingis probably won’t start at center again. So O’Quinn and Hernangomez is going to share minutes in their next game at the center spot so O’Quinn might actually get some decent run. Who knows what Jeff Hornacek is going to do with his rotations but O’Quinn has had two good games in a row with at least 20+ minutes.
Spurs 103 – Pistons 92
It was business as usual for the Spurs tonight and the game was out of hand than the score board suggests. Kawhi Leonard did his thing with another 30+ point performance with 32-6-5 while adding three 3-pointers and a steal on 11-of-22 shooting. The Spurs probably wouldn’t want to rely on Kawhi’s scoring that much but owners can’t complain. He’s doing everything for the spurs and is ranked 4 in 9-cat for the season. Dewayne Dedmon started again tonight and it seems like he’s the guy who’s the best pickup right now between him and David Lee. He dropped a strong double-double with 17 points, 17 rebounds with two blocks and a steal in 32 minutes. He’s earned his minutes through his defensive efforts and Pop is rewarding him right now. Pau Gasol is projected to return after the All-Star break so Dedmon still has a few games of value left. LaMarcus Aldridge is gaining momentum as he’s dropped his third straight double-double with 19 points, 11 boards and two blocks. I still believe LMA is a buy low option and he’s probably the player that most needs an All-Star break right now.
Andre Drummond was rolling before this game but he faced up against Dedmon and completely got outplayed by him. He finished with 12 points and 15 boards while adding three steals. However, he did struggle shooting the ball as he shot 5-of-17 from the field. He’s still returning top-10 in the last two weeks so look for a bounce back game from Drummond soon. Ish Smith has actually been playing really well off the bench and personally, is playing better than Reggie Jackson. Smith finished with 15-3-4 with two blocks and a triple in 19 minutes. There’s no doubt that the Pistons don’t see Jackson as their point guard for their future so if Jackson gets traded away, Ish Smith might get unleashed if there’s no point guard returning. Deep leagues might want to take a look at smith right now as he’s averaging 10.6 points, 2.6 boards and 4.6 assists in 20.6 minutes in the last two weeks.
Pelicans 122 – Timberwolves 106
It was a battle of the big man between Anthony Davis and Karl-Anthony Towns and it was Davis who won this one. He was probably mad at all the people who chose KAT over himself. He dropped 42 points, 13 boards with two triples, a steal and a block on 16-of-22 shooting! He’s been a beast this season and I guess you can say he’s been relatively healthy as well. As long as he’s on the floor, owners should rejoice. Buddy Hield finished with 17 points, four boards and two triples on 7-of-10 shooting in 22 minutes. Buddy has actually looked pretty good recently but it hasn’t been translating to the stat sheet. Tonight, he finally did something worthy to put himself on the fantasy radar. Hopefully a game like this gives him a boost in confidence and playing in the rising star challenge can give him a good break of sorts for a strong post All-Star break run. Jrue Holiday also had a strong performance with 25-6-12 with five steals and a triple. Jrue has been returning top-20 value in the last month and should be able to keep this up post All-Star break.
Both Towns and Andrew Wiggins needed a lot more help in this one. The bench didn’t really contribute much as they only combined for nine points and that’s not going to win you games. KAT came up short against AD as he finished with 36 points, eight boards and a triple. No steals and no blocks for KAT tonight but he did shoot 13-of-22 from the field and made all nine of this attempts on the line. KAT’s been a beast in 2017 and is ranked number 1 in 9-cat in the last month. Wiggins posted 29 points, four boards, three steals and a triple on 11-of-17 shooting. He’s actually played really well lately too. He’s ranked top-20 in the last week and top-40 in the last two weeks. It’s the lack of peripheral stats that’s hindering Wiggins’ value. If you can sell high on Wiggins for a top-30 or top-40 player, I would do it. Ricky Rubio was also solid as he posted a double-double with 15 points and 12 assists with four steals. His name is always going to be in the rumour mill but I’m not sure if teams are going to give up a lot for Rubio as the market for him isn’t actually that big. If he does get traded, it’ll hurt his value.
Pacers 107 – Wizards 112
After snapping that streak of consecutive wins at home, the Wizards are looking to build another one with a solid win against the Pacers. Markieff Morris returned in this one and it didn’t look like his calf was bothering him at all. He posted a season-high 26 points, 10 boards with three triples and a steal. He’s been solid since 2017 and is a top-50 player in the last month. He plays an instrumental part of this Wizards’ surge. John Wall also scored 26 points on this one while adding 14 assists, two steals and two triples. He was the closer for the Wizards as he scored the last nine points for the team. He’s another player who’s making owners who passed up due to surgeries to his knees during the summer salty. Otto Porter struggled in this one and was completely outplayed by Paul George. He scored eight points in 25 minutes and in foul trouble for most of the game. He’ll bounce back after this game and should be good to go for the next one.
Paul George did his best in this one but it wasn’t enough. He scored 31 points, four rebounds with two triples and a block. It’s his fifth straight game with at least 20 points and it’s only his third time that he’s accomplished this feat this season. He’s been pretty inconsistent to start the season but he’s finally starting to get things rolling and is looking aggressive in 2017. Kevin Seraphin came off the bench to score a season-high 16 points, seven boards and two blocks in 25 minutes. Don’t go rushing to add him just yet. Thaddeus Young was out with a wrist problem and he’s only seen less than 15 minutes in his previous games. We’ll have to wait for another one to recommend adding him. C.J. Miles cooled off tonight as he only scored three points with one 3-pointer after scoring 23 points and six triples against the Cavs. This is the type of performances you’ll get with Miles, super sporadic and inconsistent ones, which makes him a streamer for threes at best.
Lakers 122 – Bucks 114
The Lakers went to Milwaukee and put salt into their wounds as they suffered their first loss with Jabari Parker. Nick Young was Uncle P tonight as he dropped 26 points with five triples in this one. He even got himself to the line five times and made all of them freebies. He’s probably going to be a trade candidate as well since he has a player option this coming year. He’ll probably decline it and look for a raise with his strong performance this season. However, any trades to another team is going to hurt Young’s value. Ivica Zubac finally resurfaced after a couple of duds. He produced with limited minutes tonight as he finished with 15 points, six boards and a block in 21 minutes. He might see 20 minutes consistently as Luke Walton is going to stick with his Tarik Black and Zubac rotation while leaving Mozgov out in the cold. Zubac has really good upside with good percentages and he should be added. D’Angelo Russell bounced back from two duds that he dropped in Detroit and New York, as he posted a 14-3-5 line with four 3-pointers and a steal. Manage your expectations with DLoading as he probably won’t be a top-50 player for this season but he’ll probably have a good second half of the season if Lou Williams gets traded.
It’s the first day of a long 12 months without Jabari Parker. Giannis Antetokounmpo stepped up his game immediately as he dropped a career-high 41 points while adding eight boards, six dimes with three blocks, two steals and a triple. He shot 11-of-20 from the field and 18-of-21 from the line. What a line! Giannis’ owners should be ecstatic for Jabari’s injury if this is the type of performance that Giannis would contribute to. It might seem unrealistic but Giannis might see another huge bump for the rest of the season. Michael Beasley saw 23 minutes tonight, the most he played in almost a month. He finished with 15 points, five boards and a triple. He’s going to provide some bench scoring and he’ll probably see 20 minutes consistently from now on. If you need some points and solid source of rebounds from the wire, Beasley might be worth the add. Plus, the Bucks have a good schedule for the fantasy playoffs.
Warriors 122 – Grizzlies 107
It wasn’t even close this one as the Dubs led the entire way. We had a triple-double by Draymond Green tonight but not just any sort of triple-double. He posted a ridiculous 12 boards, 10 assists, 10 steals, five blocks and four points performance. Out of the five categories, points was his frigging lowest count! This was the line of the night by far and only Draymond can have these sort of lines. He was one point away from a 5×5 as well and he might be the only one who’s capable of missing out because of the lack of points. Klay Thompson did his thing tonight with 36 points and eight triples. He’s now averaging 6.0 threes in his last three games and is looking super hot. Meanwhile Andre Iguodala gave some really good bench scoring as he scored a season-high 22 points, adding four assists, two triples, two blocks and a steal in 28 minutes. His second highest point total in game this season was 14 points so chalk this one up as fluke. The Dubs don’t need Iggy to score and he won’t be able to do this consistently. However, he is a good source of steals, assists, triples and a solid amount of rebounds coming from a wing position. 14-team or 16-team leagues can take a look at him.
The Grizzlies just didn’t have an answer for the Dubs tonight but Mike Conley did have another solid outing against the Dubs. He finished with 20-5-9 with four triples and three steals. He did struggle on shooting the ball tonight as he shot 6-of-16 from the field. He’s returning top-15 value in the last two weeks and with a rest coming up during the All-Star break for Conley, he’ll be rejuvenated for a strong post All-Star break run. Zach Randolph posted a solid double-double with 17 points and 13 rebounds in 25 minutes. Z-Bo always have solid performances against the Dubs as he can use his physical gifts to dominate inside the paint. He’s only returning top-150 value for the season since his only contribution comes from points and rebounds. Meanwhile, Marc Gasol struggled in this one as he finished with 17-6-7 with a triple-one and four turnovers on 4-of-14 shooting. Yes, that is considered subpar performance from Marc. He’s having one hell of a season and is making owners who passed up on him salty (including me).
Hawks 107 – Kings 108
It was clutch buckets after clutch buckets in this one as the Kings came back from a 22 point deficit in the second half. They had three players who scored 22 points as well so the magical number of 22 was working it’s magic in the Golden 1 Center. DeMarcus Cousins finished with 22 points on 6-of-17 shooting. He struggled in this one but made some clutch buckets at crucial moments of the game. He also added 11 rebounds, seven assists and nine turnovers. It wasn’t the best performance for Boogie but you could see he really wanted this win. Ben Mclemore started as the shooting guard and had his best performance of this season. He finished with 22-9-3 with six triples and four steals in 42 minutes. It’s his second good outing and both games Kings got the W so Dave Joerger will probably stick with this. Darren Collison is the final player who scored 22 points, including the game-winning bucket. He added two triples and two steals in 44 minutes as Ty Lawson sat out with a hamstring problem. He’s outplaying Lawson lately and is returning top-50 value in the last month.
The Hawks lost an ugly one tonight as they gave up a 22-point lead. Even though Paul Millsap made a clutch bucket with seconds left, it wasn’t enough as he finished with 25-6-3 with two steals and two triples. Millsap is only hovering around top-50 player the entire season with some consistent performances but expectations of him being a second round player is probably long gone. Good news is that he probably won’t get traded so his value won’t take a hit. Tim Hardaway Jr. dropped 28 points with four triples but he missed the game winning basket as he got blocked by Matt Barnes. He’s been on a tear lately, averaging 19.9 points in the last two weeks along with decent threes, rebounds, assists and percentages. If the Hawks don’t make a trade at the deadline, Hardaway Jr. is someone who’ll have a strong second half of the season.
Bulls 97 – Suns 115
The back court duo of Devin Booker and Eric Bledsoe helped got the win against the Bulls tonight. Devin Booker finished with 27-5-4 with two triples and surprisingly, it was a very efficient night for Booker. It’s his first game since January 28th that he shot above 50 percent from the field. He’s been better with his peripheral stats but he’s still a year or two away from being a solid fantasy asset. Meanwhile, Bled did his thing with 23-3-8 with a triple and a steal. He’s been struggling lately, averaging 33.3 percent from the field in his last four games but the good news is that he’s healthy. Alan Williams played 24 minutes tonight as he finished off with 14 points, 11 rebounds and four blocks. He got a little more run tonight as Tyson Chandler left the game with a sprained right knee and Alex Len was suspended for this one. If Chandler misses time, Alex Len would finally get unleashed. I would give Alex Len a speculative add for now.
The Bulls struggled even though Jimmy Butler returned from a heel problem and played in 30 minutes. He finished with 20-3-6 with two steals on 6-of-16 shooting. The heel problem might be bothering him a little bit but the Bulls need Butler on the floor. He might have some rough time going forward if his heel keeps bothering him. Dwyane Wade continued his recent games of strong performances with 18-6-3 with two blocks and a triple. He’s a top-60 player in the last month and looks to be able to sustain this type of performances even though there will be a couple of maintenance and rest days for the 35-year old. Robin Lopez continues to look good with another solid performance of 12 points and seven boards. He only played 23 minutes tonight as the Suns went small quite a lot when Chandler went down. Also it doesn’t help that Cristiano Felicio also saw 22 minutes in this one.
That’s it for tonight’s FFF. Stay tuned for more and follow me on Twitter to get the latest posts or to ask me any questions about your fantasy team!