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Steve Alexander

Basketball Daily Dose

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Dose: Welcome back, Vic!

Thursday, December 13, 2018


The Raptors housed the Warriors and are now 23-7, easily the best record in the league, Victor Oladipo is back, Spencer Dinwiddie and Anthony Davis went crazy, and John Wall and Jonas Valanciunas went down on Wednesday. Follow me on Twitter right here!

 

Pacers 113, Bucks 97Victor Oladipo finally returned from his knee injury and had a 12-10-6 line in 29 minutes. The minutes were a pleasant surprise and make me think that he’s more healthy than not at this point. Myles Turner kept it going with 23 points, four 3-pointers and three blocks, while Darren Collison fell off a cliff in Dipo’s return. Thaddeus Young had a monster stat line, which is a “sell-high indicator” to me, while the rumors about Collison (or Cory Joseph) being a trade candidate makes me nervous about Collison. Let’s see what he does on Friday against the Sixers, before totally panicking. This was a great win for the Pacers, who are now 18-10 and the No. 4 seed in the East.

 

The Bucks are 18-9 and the No. 2 seed, tied with the Sixers, despite the loss. The Bucks’ starters were all OK, led by Eric Bledsoe, while Giannis Antetokounmpo flirted with a triple-double with a 12-10-7 line. The Pacers did a great job on Giannis and got him into foul trouble, as well as held him to just seven shots on the night.

 

Celtics 130, Wizards 125 OTJaylen Brown was out with the flu, Gordon Hayward was out again with an illness, missing his second straight game, and Al Horford will miss a few games with a sore left knee. Aron Baynes started and played just 16 minutes, while Marcus Smart also got a start and went off for an 18-5-3-3 line with a 3-pointer. If Brown or Hayward miss more time, Smart will be an intriguing DFS play if he starts. Marcus Morris stayed hot with 27 points and nine boards, and is worth a look if you need someone. Morris is somehow averaging 19.2 points, 5.6 rebounds and 2.4 3-pointers over his last five games. Kyrie Irving returned from his shoulder injury and went off for 38 points and seven assists, but Terry Rozier still got 35 minutes for 10 points, four assists, a steal and two 3-pointers. I don’t like using him when Kyrie is playing, but he benefitted from the absences of Brown and Hayward. The Celtics have won seven straight games and No. 5 in the East.  

 

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For the Wizards, John Wall returned to play through his heel problem, but had his right ankle fallen on by Kyrie Irving, leaving him a bit iffy for Friday’s game against the Nets. Wall went off for 34 points, 13 assists and a fun stat line, so hopefully he’s OK. Jeff Green got the start with Otto Porter Jr. (knee, day-to-day) out and had a season-high 22 points and 10 boards, but probably still belongs on waivers. Bradley Beal and Kelly Oubre were solid, as usual, and Markieff Morris was quiet against his brother tonight, assuming they didn’t trade uniforms at halftime.

 

Cavaliers 113, Knicks 106Tristan Thompson (foot) could miss a month so, of course, Larry Nance started and…Wrong. Channing Frye started and did nothing, but Nance did come off the bench for 11 rebounds, seven assists, three steals, three blocks and a 3-pointer, but hit just 1-of-5 shots for three points in 33 minutes. I still think Larry Drew will eventually start Nance, but it’s annoying that he hasn’t done it yet. Nance should be owned in my opinion. Cedi Osman and my “no-brainer,” Alec Burks, combined to hit just 1-of-13 shots in their starts. I’m fine with dumping Burks for a hot free agent, but I’m sticking with Osman, as I still believe he’ll get it going. Burks was playing well, but is 1-of-14 in his last two games, but he should also get it turned around at some point. Rodney Hood had 23 points, five boards and two 3-pointers, but Hood and Burks could both be traded. I’m not attached to either one of them. Collin Sexton scored 19 points, Jordan Clarkson got loose for a game-high 28, and Matthew Dellavedova scored 15 points with three 3-pointers off the bench. The Cavs are a mess, but Burks and Osman should be better in the next one. Shooters go through slumps.

 

The Knicks got solid games from Kevin Knox (who started), Enes Kanter, Emmanuel Mudiay and Tim Hardaway, and Frank Ntilikina is starting to show signs of life again, and had a 16-3-4-1-1 line with two 3-pointers. Trey Burke (knee) is nearing a return, so the Knicks’ point guard situation could get messy again soon. Mudiay’s worth holding until he cools off. As for Knox, I say pick him up. He’s starting to put it together and could really step up if he keeps starting. I’m not holding Mitchell Robinson, but while Noah Vonleh was quiet last night, I still have faith in him. If Kanter ever gets traded, or benched for Robinson, then I’ll buy back into Robinson.

 

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Nets 127, Sixers 124Spencer Dinwiddie went crazy with a career-high 39 points and fun line, while D’Angelo Russell was decent with 12 points and seven assists, but played just 22 minutes. The Nets rode the hot hand of Dinwiddie here. Rondae Hollis-Jefferson was bad, and I don’t have time to wait for him to figure it out, while Jarrett Allen was also quiet with eight points and five boards in just 16 minutes. He was coming off back-to-back double-doubles, so I’m not panicking. Allen Crabbe stayed hot with 20 points and four more 3-pointers, and has scored in double digits in four straight, hitting 19 3-pointers over that stretch. It’s time to move on him.

 

For the Sixers, Mike Muscala was out with an illness and Jimmy Butler missed Wednesday with a groin injury. Furkan Korkmaz started for Butler and came through with 18 points, six assists, three steals and two 3-pointers. That tied his career high in scoring and Korkmaz is worth a look as long as Butler is out. Joel Embiid went off, Ben Simmons was great, and T.J. McConnell had a season-high 17 points and four dimes on 8-of-10 shooting off the bench. Just keep an eye on him. 

 


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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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