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Basketball Daily Dose

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Dose: A Near Trip-Dub by DeMar

Sunday, October 28, 2018


Saturday’s nine-game slate provided plenty of highlights, including a near triple-double from DeMar DeRozan, another 40-plus point explosion from Damian Lillard and season-high 35 for LeBron James.


After recapping the important storylines from Saturday, we’ll wrap up the Dose by taking a quick look at a handful of players that are facing injury issues for Sunday’s games.


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Saturday’s Standouts
Rudy Gobert was absolutely dominant on both ends of the floor in Utah’s dismantling of the previously undefeated Pelicans on Saturday night. New Orleans was playing without Anthony Davis due to an elbow injury (see below for an update on AD) and Pels had no answer for Gobert in the paint. Rudy finished with a season-high 25 points on 11-of-13 shooting and added 14 rebounds, one steal and a season-high four blocks in 31 minutes. All 11 of Gobert’s makes were either dunks or lay-ups, with many coming off lobs from Utah’s guards. Rudy is now shooting a scorching 76.9 percent from the floor this season and is also making 72 percent of his free throws.


Ricky Rubio came into Saturday night struggling with his shot, having converted just 21.9 percent of his field goal attempts over Utah’s first four games. However, on Saturday, he poured in 28 points to go along with six rebounds, 12 assists, one steal and three 3-pointers in 30 minutes. Ricky shot 8-of-14 from the floor and made all nine of his free throws.


Damian Lillard exploded for a season-high 42 points on Saturday. He shot 15-of-28 from the field, was a perfect 7-of-7 from the stripe, and tacked on seven rebounds, six assists, one steal, one block and three turnovers. That’s back-to-back 40-burgers for Dame, including 76 total points over the Blazers last six quarters. Per Basketball-Reference, Lillard is the first player in Portland franchise history with at least 40 points, five rebounds and five assists in consecutive games.


Zach LaVine remained red-hot as the Bulls picked up their first victory of the season on Saturday in Atlanta. LaVine scored 27 points, grabbed a career-high 11 boards and chipped in three assists, one steal, one 3-pointer. The only blemish on his nightly resume was the fact that he turned the ball over nine times. Fantasy owners certainly won’t hold that against him considering he has wildly outperformed his ADP thus far. LaVine, who is averaging 29.3 points on 52.7 percent shooting, has at least 20 points and one 3-pointer in seven straight games. The only Bulls to ever string together longer such streaks are Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen and Derrick Rose.


Joel Embiid (ankle) was a game-time decision on Saturday night but looked fully healthy in the Sixers win over Charlotte. He tallied 27 points, 14 boards, two assists, two blocks, and one 3-pointer in 37 minutes. That’s six straight double-doubles to start the season for Embiid. He has also logged more than 32 minutes in each contest, which is the longest such streak of his career… Robert Covington had a vintage RoCo night for Philly. He stuffed the stat sheet to the tune of 18 points, ten rebounds, two steals, four blocks, and four 3-pointers in 36 minutes against the Hornets.

 

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Kemba Walker got buckets again on Saturday. He took 31 shots en route to 37 points and added six rebounds, six assists, one steal, two blocks, and three 3-pointers in 35 minutes. That’s Kemba’s fourth 30-point game this season, which is tied for the league lead. Despite shooting just 11-of-31, he made 12-of-14 from the charity stripe.


Deandre Ayton is the real deal. He missed just one shot all night, finishing 12-of-13 from the field for 24 points to go along with eight rebounds, five assists, one steal and no turnovers. Five games into his NBA career, he’s averaging 17.8 points and 10.2 boards, while shooting 69.6 percent from the floor and 84.6 from the line.


DeMar DeRozan just missed posting his first career triple-double on Saturday. He scored 30 points, hauled in 12 rebounds and dished out eight assists across 39 minutes in an impressive win over the Lakers. Typically considered simply a scorer, DeMar has been doing it all for the Spurs over his first two weeks in San Antonio. Prior to 2017-18, DeRozan had never averaged more than 4.0 assists per game. He’s currently averaging 7.8 dimes. He is also pulling down a career-high 6.0 boards a night. Oh, and he’s also averaging 27.2 points. Sure, we’d like to see some more triples, but fantasy owners will try not to get greedy.


LeBron James scored 35 points, his most in a Lakers uniform, Saturday night. He also had with 11 rebounds, two steals, and two 3-pointers, but recorded a season-low four assists. With Rajon Rondo back from his suspension, King James didn’t have the ball in his hands quite as often as he did when Rondo was in street clothes.


On the Radar:
The Celtics cruised to an easy victory over the Pistons on Saturday night, but Kyrie Irving had another poor outing. Irving shot just 1-of-5 from the floor for three points to go along with seven rebounds, five assists, one steal, one block, and one 3-pointer in 23 minutes. On the season, Kyrie is now averaging 14.0 points, while shooting a putrid 39.1 percent from the floor, 24.1 percent from downtown and 69.2 percent from the free-throw stripe. Fortunately, he's also dishing out 5.5 assists and grabbing 4.8 rebounds a night to partially sustain his fantasy value. Yet, this is obviously not what owner who invested a second-round pick had in mind… Daniel Theis, who was questionable due to foot sprain, did play and scored 17 points with eight rebounds, one assist and two 3-pointers in 19 minutes… Jayson Tatum had a rare dud, shooting 2-of-9 from the field for six points with three rebounds, three assists, one block and one 3-pointer… Jaylen Brown had team-high 19 points but little else (two rebounds, one assist, one steal, one block and three 3-pointers) in 25 minutes.


Donovan Mitchell scored 22 points with two rebounds, six assists, one steal and three 3-pointers in 33 minutes against the Pelicans on Saturday. Mitchell struggled with his shot early on this season but scored 38 vs. Houston earlier in the week and was 7-of-10 from the floor on Saturday… Derrick Favors scored 19 points with seven rebounds and two blocks in 19 minutes.


Blake Griffin came crashing back down to earth on Saturday. Griffin entered the evening averaging a league-leading 33.8 points and had scored over 25 points in each of the Pistons first four games. However, he missed 11 of his 13 field goal attempts on Saturday and settled for seven points, six rebounds, three assists and three turnovers in 30 minutes. He’ll look to get back on track Tuesday when the Pistons and Celtics face off again… Andre Drummond tallied 18 points, eight rebounds, one assist and two blocks in 29 minutes. It was the first time all season that Drummond failed to record a double-double… Stanley Johnson had his best game of the season, finishing 16 points, three rebounds, two assists, one steal and three 3-pointers in 27 minutes.


Nikola Mirotic got hot early and scored 25 points on 10-of-18 shooting, to go along with eight rebounds and four 3-pointers in 28 minutes. With Anthony Davis (elbow) sidelined, Mirotic tried to keep the Pels undefeated this season but didn’t get enough help… Julius Randle was a popular DFS play with Davis out of action, but Randle was limited to 12 points, three rebounds, one steal and one block in 19 minutes. He got in foul trouble early and got eaten alive by Rudy Gobert while he was in the game… Jrue Holiday scored 18 points with two rebounds, six assists, one steal, two blocks and three turnovers in 29 minutes. Holiday is trending in the right direction despite some early season struggles. It’s only a matter of time before he starts humming.

 

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Ben Simmons took 20 shots from the floor on Saturday, but only made five. He finished with 14 points, 12 rebounds, three assists, one steal, and four turnovers in 32 minutes… Markelle Fultz had 10/4/4 in 25 minutes.


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