Steve Alexander

Basketball Daily Dose

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Dose: Lou Williams stays in LA

Thursday, February 8, 2018


Fantasy Game Recaps

 

Pistons 115, Nets 106Andre Drummond’s monster run continued with 17 points, a season-high 27 rebounds, three steals and three blocks against Jarrett Allen and company. Drummond is on fire right now and is a must-start in every format imaginable, averaging 18.4 points, 20.2 rebounds, 2.8 steals and 2.6 blocks over his last five. This is the Drummond we’ve been waiting on for three years and he might just win you a fantasy title this season if he can keep it going. Blake Griffin scored 25 with seven assists, Ish Smith had 15 points, six boards and four assists, and Stanley Johnson added 19 points, three steals and a 3-pointer. Reggie Bullock cooled down with nine points, a 3-pointer and a block, and Anthony Tolliver also cooled off the bench with nine points and two rebounds, but still played a respectable 27 minutes in an eight-man rotation for the Pistons. The Pistons are rolling, winning five straight games after losing their previous eight. Welcome, Blake and hello Andre! The hold order here is Drummond, Griffin, Smith, Bullock, Johnson, Tolliver. But I do like the idea of picking up Johnson right now. The way Griffin and Drummond are playing together is just scary.

 

DeMarre Carroll, Jarrett Allen and Spencer Dinwiddie all double-doubled in the Nets’ loss, while Joe Harris had 18 points, six rebounds, six assists and four 3-pointers in another start, and Allen Crabbe went off for a career-high 34 points with six 3-pointers. As long as Caris LeVert (concussion) and Rondae Hollis-Jefferson (groin) are out, Crabbe and Harris are going to have some nice nights. Allen also had six dimes, a steal and two blocks, and, in this order, Dinwiddie, Allen, Carroll, Crabbe and Harris are all worth owning in most leagues. Jahlil Okafor backed up a promising game with just two points and one rebound in nine minutes. As long as Allen can walk, I don’t care about Okafor. And D’Angelo Russell was quiet yet again, with just four points in 17 minutes. Why did I hold him all year?! And yes, I’m still holding Russell.

 

Rockets 109, Heat 101James Harden went off for 41 points, four rebounds, six assists, three steals, a block and five 3-pointers, and Chris Paul added 24 points, seven boards, seven assists, a steal and three 3-pointers in 36 minutes. Ryan Anderson (ankle), Trevor Ariza (leg) and Eric Gordon (back) were all out for this one, but only Gerald Green made any noise off the bench in their absence with 12 points, three boards and two 3-pointers. As long as Gordon, Ariza and Anderson are out, Green’s worth a look, but I don’t trust him once Gordon or Ariza are back in action.

 

Josh Richardson scored a career-high 30 points with four boards, five assists, a steal, a block and seven 3-pointers, Goran Dragic matched him with 30 points, six assists and two 3-pointers, and Hassan Whiteside had a solid 16 & 17 double-double with zero blocks. Look, I don’t know if you listened to me or not (Andy), but picking up Richardson after a cool start to the season was a great idea. Justise Winslow and Damon Jones Jr. started for the injured Heat, but didn’t do anything. And Bam Adebayo was highly disappointing with five points, five boards and two blocks in just 15 minutes. Kelly Olynyk was sidelined again with a shoulder injury, so Adebayo’s line was disappointing. James Johnson was only slightly better (he’s fallen off) and Wayne Ellington was out with a shoulder injury of his own, which only allowed Richardson to go all-world on the Rockets in a loss. For the record, I’m still on board with Johnson, who played 36 minutes and finished with nine points, two rebounds, three assists and a 3-pointer on 4-of-12 shooting. Tyler Johnson played 34 minutes, but hit just 1-of-7 shots for three points, six boards, three assists and a steal, and has really been struggling. I feel great for cutting him for a hot free agent when he was hurt a few games ago.

 

Jazz 92, Grizzlies 88Ricky Rubio, the human groundhog, kept it going with 29 points, eight rebounds, three assists, three steals and two 3-pointers, and hit 8-of-16 shots and 11-of-14 free throws for another one of his best games of the season. As I (sort of) predicted, he’s on fire, averaging 24 points, 5.0 rebounds, 8.6 assists, 1.2 steals and 2.0 3-pointers on 55 percent shooting over his last five. Not only that, but the Jazz have won seven straight games and are now just 2.5 games behind the reeling Pelicans for the No. 8 seed (with the hot Clippers sitting between them). I don’t know what the right term is for Rubio’s ability to suck all year and then turn it on in January and February, but I kind of like the ‘Groundhog’ tag I gave him. Rudy Gobert and Rodney Hood played well for the Jazz, but starters Derrick Favors, Joe Ingles and Donovan Mitchell all struggled in this one. Hood is hot, but I think he’s trade bait, and Mitchell is just one game away from another breakout. I’m buying Mitchell and selling Hood, who had 18 points and zero 3-pointers. Ol’ Man Favors had just two points last night, but it’s been hard to be mad at him, as he’s been playing well.

 

Cavaliers 140, Timberwolves 138 OTLeBron James not only had 37 points, 10 rebounds, 15 assists, a steal, a block and five 3-pointers, but also hit a fadeaway jumper at the buzzer in OT to win the game for the reeling Cavaliers. Don’t mistake Bron for a guy who doesn’t care. He won’t waive his no-trade clause, is in for the long haul this season, and the Cavaliers are still the No. 3 seed in the East, despite what you may have heard. J.R. Smith had 20 points and six 3-pointers on 7-of-14 shooting (I don’t care), Tristan Thompson had 17 points and five rebounds, (I don’t care) and Isaiah Thomas had 13 points, seven assists and three 3-pointers (let’s go). Jae Crowder started and had 10 points and two boards, while Jeff Green played five more minutes and had 13 points and six boards. I’d rather own Green than Crowder at this point, easily.

 

The Wolves were led by 30 points, 10 boards, a steal, two blocks and 6-of-6 3-point shooting from Karl-Anthony Towns, while Jimmy Butler had 35 points, five boards, six assists, two steals and four 3-pointers in the loss. Jeff Teague had 14 points and a season-high 15 assists, and Andrew Wiggins scored 19 empty points in the loss. Jamal Crawford scored 16 points with a couple 3-pointers, but is still too risky to use in most 12-team leagues.

 

Spurs 129, Suns 81 – This game was blowout city, to no one’s surprise, but LaMarcus Aldridge was the only Spur to turn in a double-double. The news of the night was Dejounte Murray’s ankle injury, but no one really stepped up in his place. The Spurs are impossible in fantasyland, as 13 players played at least 11 minutes last night. Yes, it was a blowout and garbage time was flowing, but still – 13 players with at least 11 minutes is ridiculous. If Murray’s out, Tony Parker and Patty Mills will get the run, but I don’t trust either one of them. Murray lasted just 13 minutes last night (and had 14 points), while Mills scored 18 points in 17 minutes, and Parker had 13 points in 17 minutes. Let’s just hope that Murray’s not out for long. Kyle Anderson was bad, missing both of his shots for zero points, five rebounds, four assists, and nothing else, and I’ve dropped him for a hot free agent (who doesn’t play for the Spurs) in several leagues. The Spurs are a fantasy dumpster fire, for the most part. And if you like dumpster fires, you might be interested in Danny Green’s 17 points in 22 minutes. He’s also been swirling in trade rumors.  

 

The Suns were just awful. Alex Len led them in scoring off the bench with 14 points (no thanks), T.J. Warren had 11 on 4-of-10 shooting (I’ll forgive him), and Josh Jackson hit 6-of-17 shots for 13 points, six boards and two blocks in 33 minutes. I would still let Jackson drive my kids home and take my wife to dinner, and he should be owned in every league imaginable, as this was his worst game in three weeks. In the weirdest development of the night, Dragan Bender and Marquese Chriss started next to each other with Devin Booker (hip) out, and Bender got the best of Chriss. Bender had 12 points, six boards and two 3-pointers, while Chriss had seven points, 10 rebounds, one steal and hit just 1-of-7 shots. I still think Chriss is a guy to grab and hold, as long as he’s healthy. Some dude named Josh Gray (see above) played 31 minutes with Tyler Ulis (ankle) hurt, and had nine points, four rebounds, seven assists and four steals, despite hitting just 4-of-16 shots. If you’re in a deep league, Gray is worth a shot as long as Ulis and Booker are out. For the rest of you, pick up Chriss, clap your hands, do a Hail Mary, and spit on the sidewalk while throwing a penny over your shoulder.

 

The NBA Trade Deadline is here and it’s time to get busy. We’ll have a live blog running throughout the day and then we'll see you on the other side of the refresh button all day on Thursday!!! 



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Steve "Dr. A" Alexander is the senior editor for the NBA for Rotoworld.com and a contributor to NBCSports.com. The 2017-18 NBA season marks (at least) his 16th year of covering fantasy hoops for Rotoworld. Follow him on Twitter - @Docktora.
Email :Steve Alexander



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