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Jared Johnson

Basketball Daily Dose

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Dose: Real Rookies for ROY

Monday, January 8, 2018


Week 13 Schedule (Games Played)

 

4 Games: BKN, DEN, GSW, IND, LAC, MIL, MIN, NOR, POR, SAC, TOR

 

3 Games: ATL, CHA, CHI, CLE, DAL, DET, HOU, LAL, MIA, NYK, OKC, ORL, SAS, WAS

 

2 Games: MEM, PHX, UTA

 

1 Game: PHI, BOS

 

The Real ROY

 

Donovan Mitchell continued to make his case for Rookie of the Year honors during Sunday’s heartbreaking one-point loss to the Heat, scoring 27 points on 12-of-25 shooting to go with three 3-pointers, two rebounds, three assists, one steal and one turnover in 36 minutes. Mitchell appeared to be bothered by Miami’s length through the first half, as he was settling for a lot of tough, long-range, contested triples; but he came out firing to begin the second half posting a ridiculous 41.0 usage rate through the third quarter of action while scoring 13 of his 27 points. He had a really nice stretch to open up the third in which he initiated every offensive possession on offense and Utah simply worked off his creativity, and he also threw down yet another one of his signature alley-oop jams.  Over the past month, the rookie has been churning out top-35 value in 9-cat leagues behind averages of 20.6 points, 3.8 assists, 3.7 boards, 1.8 triples, 1.7 steals, 0.5 swats and 2.7 turnovers per contest on 48.2% shooting from the field and 86.8% shooting from the stripe, and because Ben Simmons is clearly a #FakeRookie, Mitchell is my favorite to come home with the Rookie of the Year award this season.

 

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J-Rich Hits the Game-Winner

 

Josh Richardson kept the good times rolling on Sunday, hitting a game-winning layup on his way to 14 points (6-of-11 FGs, 2-of-4 FTs), three boards, seven dimes, two steals, two blocks and one turnover in 37 minutes. After a dreadful start to the season in which he averaged just 7.6 points on 35.4% shooting through the month of November, Richardson has been absolutely crushing ever since the calendar hit December, churning out averages of 17.5 points, 3.1 assists, 3.3 boards, 1.9 triples, 1.3 steals, 0.9 swats and 1.6 turnovers per game on 54.1% shooting, which has been good enough for top-20 production in 9-cat leagues. Additionally, per NBA.com, 52.7% of J-Rich’s shots could be described as open or wide-open looks during that 16-game span, so while his FG% will likely dip at some point, he should still be able to connect on a high percentage of his attempts. Really, it looks like the only thing that could slow Richardson down at this point would be himself, and with the way he’s been playing, I just don’t see that happening. Here’s a look at his ridiculous shot chart from the past month:

 

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Kings of New York

 

Kristaps Porzingis helped lead the Knicks to victory on Sunday, scoring 29 points on 9-of-25 shooting (8-of-8 from the stripe) to go with eight rebounds, one assist, one block and two turnovers in 38 minutes. He’s been doing everything aside from shooting efficiently over the past month, but he’ll have a good opportunity to buck that trend on Wednesday with a matchup against the Bulls.

 

Enes Kanter notched his 16th double-double of the year with 13 points, 18 boards, one steal, one assist and four turnovers in 25 minutes. I do not see the Knicks making the playoffs over teams like the Pacers, 76ers or Pistons this season, and I imagine Kanter’s minutes will start heading south once they are mathematically eliminated from the postseason in order to give more developmental run to Willy Hernangomez, which is why I view Kanter as a sell-high guy.

 

Mr. Triple Double

 

Russell Westbrook secured his 14th triple-double of the season during Sunday’s 114-110 loss to Phoenix, registering 26 points (11-of-21 FGs, 3-of-7 FTs), 10 boards, 11 dimes, two steals, one 3-pointer and six turnovers in 34 minutes. Apparently, Mr. Triple Double completely forgot how to consistently hit his free throws this season, and that weird development has been a major hindrance to his value this year. That said, he’s been getting it done everywhere else with averages of 24.9 points, 9.6 rebounds, 10.1 assists, 1.5 triples, 2.0 steals and of course 4.5 turnovers per game on 43.4% shooting, so once his free throw shooting (71.1%) starts trending towards his career average (81.7%), he should rank within the top-8.

 

The Bosnian Beasting

 

Jusuf Nurkic recorded his ninth double-double of the year during Sunday’s impressive 111-110 win over the Spurs, scoring 17 points on 7-of-15 shooting (3-of-5 from the stripe) to go with 13 rebounds, one assist, one block and one turnover in 31 minutes of action. After a sluggish start to the year, Nurkic has really picked up his play over the past few weeks, flirting with top-30 value (punting free throws) behind averages of 15.2 points, 11.2 rebounds, 2.5 dimes, 1.3 steals, 1.2 blocks and 1.5 turnovers per game on 47.2% shooting from the field. He’s finally beginning to resemble the top-40 Nurkic that we saw after the break last season, and I don’t see any reason why he won’t be able to keep this trend going. 

 

Sell High Opportunity

 

Brook Lopez had one of his better games in recent memory during Friday’s easy win over Atlanta, scoring eight points on 3-of-10 shooting to go with three rebounds, two assists, two 3-pointers, four steals, two blocks and two turnovers in 19 minutes. The fact that I’d even consider this low-end stat line something worth writing about tells you the type of season BroLo has been having in Los Angeles, but hey, he brought some defensive stats to the table so maybe that will be enough to extract some value in a trade. His numbers have been steadily trending in the wrong direction since November, and I don’t expect that to be something that gets better as we progress through the year, so I’d use this semi-productive game as an opportunity to see if I could extract any value for him on the trade market. You won’t get much, but maybe you could snag someone like Marquese Chriss, Goran Dragic, Nicolas Batum, John Henson or maybe roll the dice on a Danilo Gallinari (glute) or Mike Conley (Achilles). Really, all those guys offer way more upside than Lopez.

 


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A hoops fanatic, Jared Johnson has been a member of the Rotoworld team since 2013. Follow him on Twitter @JaredJ831, and feel free to send him your questions regarding trades, draft strategies and all things fantasy basketball.
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