Jonas Nader

Basketball Daily Dose

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Dose: Boogie Gets Revenge

Friday, October 27, 2017


My colleagues did a killer job on the game blurbs as always, so I'm going to focus more on the big news in addition to some potential fantasy pickups from Thursday. For NBA news and fantasy advice, find me on Twitter here!


Lauri Markkanen stays hot

 

The impressive rookie had 14 points, 13 rebounds, one block and a pair of 3-pointers against the Hawks, helping the Bulls pick up their first win of the season. He has 12 3-pointers through four games which is the most for any NBA player through the first four games of his career, and he hasn’t played less than 31 minutes in any outing. "When you can play through a 20-year-old kid, it’s pretty impressive,” coach Fred Hoiberg said.

 

A report from K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune indicated that Nikola Mirotic (face) may be willing to accept a trade out of Chicago, as it sounds like he’s not ready to forgive Bobby Portis for clocking him in the face. Johnson also adds that one of his sources said the situation is playing out toward a "me or him" trade demand. Even if Portis and Mirotic work out their issues and remain in Chicago, I don’t see how the Bulls can take Markkanen out of the lineup at this point. He’s a strong pickup in all fantasy formats. 

 

 

Return of the King

 

DeMarcus Cousins got a royal welcome during his return to Sacramento, and boy did he put on a show. The Pelicans were missing Anthony Davis (knee), but with a little help from Jameer Nelson and Jrue Holiday, Cousins put the team on his back and helped them overcome a 19-point deficit — that’s the third largest comeback in franchise history. Boogie put up 41 points, 23 rebounds, six assists, a steal, a block and three 3-pointers on 14-of-25 shooting, becoming the first player since Joe Barry Carroll in 1987 to reach those numbers. Boogie dropped a ton of weight over the offseason and means business, so you should be sitting pretty if you drafted Cousins in the second round. 

 

 

Anthony Davis (knee) sits out Thursday

 

The Pelicans were relieved to find out that Davis’ MRI came back clean and he doesn’t have any structural damage, but he does have a little bit of swelling. Davis said he wanted to be cautious and sit out Thursday’s game as opposed to tweaking it further and missing 15, so it sounds like he has a good chance of returning on Saturday vs. the Cavaliers. 

 

Coach Alvin Gentry has way too much trust in Dante Cunningham, so Cheick Diallo’s handcuff appeal isn’t as high as I originally thought — the impressive second-year big played just nine minutes with four points and four rebounds. I think Diallo will eventually get his shot at a larger role, but he’s just a dynasty stash for now. If Davis misses more time, just look for Cousins and Holiday to pick up the slack. 

 

 

Giannis Antetokounmpo looks like the MVP

 

We’re only five games in, but Giannis already looks like he has the MVP Award in the bag with the best player efficiency rating by a mile. He had another incredible game on Thursday, scoring 28 points with 10 rebounds, seven assists, three steals, two 3-pointers and one block in 42 minutes. He’s now averaging 35.0 points, 10.6 rebounds, 5.6 assists, 2.4 steals, 1.0 blocks and 0.6 3-pointers, shooting an absurd 62.4 percent from the field. He’s going to be the best player in fantasy for many years to come and it’s crazy to think that he’s only 22, but he's 

 

Waiver Wire Watch

 

Now let’s check out which players made some noise on Thursday and whether or not they're worth adding to your fantasy team. 

 

Jameer Nelson- The veteran PG was dumped by Denver, but they are probably regretting that move with Jamal Murray and Emmanuel Mudiay struggling. The Pelicans are certainly happy to have him though, and Nelson had his best game of the season vs. the Kings with 18 points, four rebounds, six assists and a block in 36 minutes. His value could fall off a cliff once the Pelicans get Rajon Rondo back in the lineup several weeks from now, but Nelson is worth a look for PG-needy owners. If coach Alvin Gentry wants to keep his job, he'll need to keep riding Nelson for 30+ minutes a night for the next few weeks. 

 

John Collins- If Collins is somehow still available in your league, change that right now. He’s arguably been a top-3 rookie so far and had another strong outing on Thursday, posting 13 points, five rebounds and a block on 5-of-6 shooting in 25 minutes. Foul trouble has been an issue, but there’s really nothing else to complain about. He's going to be even better later in the season when the tank kicks into full gear. 

 

Mike Muscala- He has taken advantage of an injury to Ersan Ilyasova (knee) and had his best game of the season, posting a double-double with 14 points, 10 rebounds, four assists, one steal, one block and two 3-pointers. We’ve seen Muscala put up nice numbers in limited minutes in the past, but he wasn’t playing well this season prior to Thursday and I’ll need to see him do this against a team not named the Bulls. For me, the Atlanta bigs I want going forward are Collins and Dewayne Dedmon in that order. 

 

David Nwaba- Arguably the biggest surprise of the night, Nwaba came out of nowhere with a 15-point, 11-rebound double-double with one 3-pointer in 23 minutes. He got extended run with Paul Zipser (knee) out, but he certainly gave coach Fred Hoiberg to think about going forward. Anything can happen on the tanking Bulls, and I certainly think it’s possible for Nwaba to have some value on one of the weakest teams in the East. 

 

Denzel Valentine- Justin Holiday is the wing to own in Chicago (at least until Zach LaVine is back), but Valentine is a name to watch going forward and I actually like his outlook a lot more than Nwaba’s because he can play three positions. Valentine had a brutal shooting night (3-of-14 FGs), but played 36 minutes and had 11 points, nine rebounds, five assists, two steals and two 3-pointers. He’s a bit injury prone, but if he keeps seeing this type of workload I’ll be tempted to add him in standard 12-team leagues. 

 

Marco Belinelli- I never thought I’d have to talk about Belinelli as a potential pickup, but he’s rolling right now, scoring 23 points on Thursday with season averages of 15.6 points, 2.6 rebounds, 2.4 assists, 1.0 steals and 2.8 3-pointers. I’m skeptical that he can keep up this pace, but he’s at least worth a look as a streaming option until the Hawks get DeAndre Bembry back from injury. 

 

Jarell Martin- JaMychal Green (ankle) is still several weeks away and Chandler Parsons needs a maintenance day every time he plays five minutes, so Martin looks like the PF to own in Memphis right now. He wasn’t even expected to make the final roster, but he changed their minds with a solid preseason and it’s carried over into the regular season. He had nine points, nine rebounds, five blocks, one assist and two triples in 32 minutes vs. the Mavericks, and while I haven’t pulled the trigger on adding him in my leagues, he’s near the top of my watch list. 

 

Skal Labissiere and Bogdan Bogdanovic- It’s nice to see De’Aaron Fox balling for the Kings, but it won’t be long before Labissiere and Bogdanovic are getting extended run at the expense of guys like Zach Randolph, Vince Carter and Garrett Temple. Just treat them like stashes for now, but expect big things no later than after the All-Star break.




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