Kemba Walker rusty in season debut


Sunday’s schedule was initially a seven-game affair. Sadly, solely 5 video games have been performed as two wanted to be postponed attributable to roster points introduced on by contact tracing necessities. Washington, which hasn’t performed since January 11, has a staggering six gamers who’ve examined constructive for COVID-19. Sunday’s recreation in opposition to the Cavaliers is the third that the staff has needed to postpone this week, and the 2 groups received’t play on Monday, both.

The Wizards have three extra video games on their schedule for subsequent week, however who is aware of simply what number of of these are performed. That’s dangerous information for many who have Bradley Beal rostered, as he was off to a scorching begin to the season earlier than the postponements. Additionally postponed on Sunday was Philadelphia’s recreation in opposition to the Thunder, because the 76ers have been under the minimal variety of lively gamers required to play (eight). Doc Rivers’ staff isn’t scheduled to play once more till Wednesday, so we’ll see if Philadelphia can attain the minimal by then.

Beneath is a have a look at what occurred within the 5 video games that have been performed on Sunday, starting with the Celtics welcoming again their start line guard.

Sunday’s Scores

Knicks 105, Celtics 75
Bulls 117, Mavericks 101
Jazz 109, Nuggets 105
Pelicans 128, Kings 123
Clippers 129, Pacers 96

Kemba seems to be rusty, and will get harm once more: Kemba Walker made his return to recreation motion Sunday afternoon, and he was on a restrict of 20 minutes. As one would anticipate he seemed rusty within the Celtics loss, capturing 3-of-13 from the sector and ending with a line of 9 factors, three rebounds, 4 assists, three steals, one 3-pointer (on eight makes an attempt) and 5 turnovers in 20 minutes. Walker’s afternoon got here to a painful finish, as he was on the mistaken finish of a Nerlens Noel field out that despatched him down the court docket. Walker was capable of stroll again to the locker room below his personal energy, and finally rejoined his teammates on the bench for the rest of the competition.

With Walker again, Jeff Teague (0/2/2/1 in 14 minutes) and Payton Pritchard (3/5/1 block with one 3-pointer in 17 minutes) took slight hits. However that’s as a result of mixture of Walker being on a minutes restrict, and Jayson Tatum (COVID-19) nonetheless being sidelined. As soon as the Celtics rotation is entire, will probably be troublesome for these two to supply a lot in the way in which of fantasy worth. In the interim Pritchard is the higher possibility for these in extraordinarily deep leagues, however that’s it.

When will Quickley grow to be PG1 in New York?: Elfrid Payton has been Tom Thibodeau’s best choice to be the Knicks start line guard, although the offensive manufacturing hasn’t been there on a constant foundation. Payton performed 23 minutes Sunday, posting a line of 9 factors (3-of-9 FGs, 3-of-3 FTs), 4 rebounds, three assists one steal and one blocked shot. Rookie Immanuel Quickley was higher, tallying 17 factors (7-of-12 FGs), eight assists, one steal, one blocked shot and two 3-pointers in 21 minutes.

Quickley, who’s rostered in 26% of Yahoo leagues, hasn’t been an important fantasy possibility as he at the moment ranks simply inside the top-200 in each 8- and 9-cat codecs. However he has been extra productive than Payton. So will there being a altering of the guard within the close to future? In all probability not, as Thibodeau mentioned after Sunday’s win that he likes what Payton brings to the desk defensively.

“I really like each guys — they’re completely different and convey various things to the staff,” Thibodeau mentioned in keeping with the New York Submit. “It offers us nice flexibility. Elfrid, if you have a look at his protection and measurement, plenty of these guards, significantly level guards within the NBA right this moment, they’re a load to take care of. Elfrid has understanding find out how to defend them. He can play-make for us. And when Quickley is available in, he offers us a unique look.”

Additionally value noting from this recreation was Obi Toppin having a profession day, as he completed with 12 factors (5-of-8 FGs), 5 rebounds, one steal, one block and two 3-pointers in 17 minutes. The lottery decide nonetheless isn’t value rostering in commonplace leagues, however Sunday’s effort was a step in the fitting course.

Markkanen seems to be sharp in Bulls victory: Two nights after he made his long-awaited return to the lineup after lacking time as a result of league’s well being and security protocols, Lauri Markkanen had his finest recreation of the season in Chicago’s win in Dallas. He shot 10-of-19 from the sector and 7-of-8 from the foul line, scoring a season-high 29 factors to associate with 10 rebounds, three assists and two 3-pointers in 33 minutes. Markkanen at the moment sits simply exterior of the the top-50 in each 8- and 9-cat codecs, giving fantasy managers manufacturing that’s barely greater than his Yahoo ADP (74). Don’t be shocked if he works his method into the top-50, and finally stays there.

Garrett Temple additionally had his finest recreation of the season, accounting for 20 factors, three rebounds, three assists, two steals, one block and two 3-pointers in 29 minutes off the bench. Rostered in simply 2% of Yahoo leagues, the veteran guard has threatened top-50 standing in 9-cat during the last week. Chicago, which nonetheless isn’t again to full energy because it awaits the returns of Tomas Satoransky and Chandler Hutchison, performs three video games this coming week. That doesn’t assist issues with regards to assessing Temple’s short-term worth. Additionally value noting with regards to the Bulls schedule: all three video games shall be a part of a back-to-back: Monday vs. Houston, adopted by a Friday/Saturday B2B vs. the Hornets and lakers.

Ryan Arcidiacono (4/4/5 with one 3-pointer) and Daniel Gafford (7/3/2 blocks) performed 17 and 13 minutes, respectively, of their returns to the Bulls rotation. Neither is value rostering proper now, however their contributions helped the Bulls win regardless of capturing nights for Zach LaVine and Coby White.

Porzingis performs season-high 33 minutes: Kristaps Porzingis has seen his enjoying time improve in every of the three video games that he’s appeared in since getting back from a torn meniscus. And he surpassed the 30-minute mark in Sunday’s loss to the Bulls, logging 33 for the shorthanded Mavericks. He had a good recreation, placing up 20 factors (9-of-19 FGs, 2-of-2 FTs), eight rebounds and two blocked pictures, however the Unicorn additionally missed all seven of his makes an attempt from past the arc. Dallas is again in motion on Monday, and it hasn’t been determined if Porzingis shall be accessible for the matchup with the Raptors.

Dallas was down six rotation gamers on Sunday, with 5 sidelined attributable to COVID-19 protocols and Tim Hardaway Jr. attributable to a groin damage. Jalen Brunson is anticipated to be accessible, however that doesn’t assist the Mavericks with regards to addressing their lack of our bodies within the submit. If Porzingis is held out, anticipate to see loads of Willie Cauley-Stein (10 factors, 5 rebounds in 27 minutes) and James Johnson (10 factors, two rebounds, one 3-pointer and 5 turnovers in 21 minutes) on Monday. Wesley Iwundu made his second straight begin, enjoying half-hour and accounting for 9 factors, three rebounds, one help, one steal and one 3-pointer. He additionally stands to play lots on Monday.

Cauley-Stein, who’s rostered in 19% of Yahoo leagues, is the very best fantasy possibility of these three, even along with his lack of constant defensive manufacturing.

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Jokic, Murray wanted some assist: Due to the tandem of Nikola Jokic and Jamal Murray, the Nuggets had an opportunity to beat the Jazz Sunday evening. However they have been unable to, as Denver completed the sport with two double-digit scorers to Utah’s six. Jokic (35/14/9/2/1 with three 3-pointers in 40 minutes) completed one help shy of one other triple-double, however he was additionally answerable for six turnovers, whereas Murray (30/5/4/1 block with 4 3-pointers in 42 minutes) hit the 30-point mark for the third time this month. One thing to observe right here is Murray’s well being, as he mentioned on Saturday that his proper elbow has been bothering him on each shot. After going 9-of-17 within the first half, he made simply two of his ten shot makes an attempt within the second.

Over the past week Will Barton has approached top-50 worth in 9-cat, however he laid an egg Sunday evening. Taking pictures 1-of-6 from the sector, he completed with two factors, 5 rebounds, 4 assists and one blocked shot in 26 minutes. Given his play earlier than Sunday’s dud, I’d anticipate Barton to bounce again on Tuesday when Denver hosts Oklahoma Metropolis.

Gary Harris, who’s rostered in 19% of Yahoo leagues, was simply 2-of-11 from the sector in opposition to the Jazz. He hasn’t supplied a lot in the way in which of fantasy worth, but it surely’s value noting that he shot 50% or higher from the sector in 4 straight video games forward of Sunday’s exhibiting. The few remaining holdouts could need to see what Harris can do on Tuesday earlier than deciding whether or not or to not minimize him unfastened. The Nuggets have simply three video games subsequent week, with a back-to-back in Phoenix scheduled for Friday and Saturday.

Bogdanovic, Clarkson stand out for Utah: With Donovan Mitchell not getting going till the second half of the Jazz win over Denver, scoring 16 of his 18 factors after the intermission, there was a necessity for different contributors to step ahead. Mike Conley (14/3/8/1 with two 3-pointers) obtained off to begin, and Bojan Bogdanovic and Jordan Clarkson supplied stable manufacturing all through. Bogdanovic shot 5-of-9 from three, ending with 17 factors, three rebounds and three assists, whereas Clarkson added a 23/3/1/2/1 line with 4 3-pointers in half-hour off the bench.

Clarkson is one in every of two Jazz gamers, the opposite being Conley, offering no less than fifth-round worth in each 8- and 9-cat codecs at this level within the season, and he’s outperforming his Yahoo ADP (139) by a major margin. Given the truth that he has by no means completed a season inside the top-100 in his NBA profession, some fantasy managers could also be tempted to promote excessive. If you may get good worth in return, that wouldn’t be a nasty concept. However those that as a substitute select to hold onto Clarkson, due largely to his significance to the Jazz rotation, can’t be blamed for taking that method.

Kings don’t have any reply for Williamson: Zion Williamson posted his finest single-game discipline purpose share of the season in Sunday’s win in Sacramento, capturing 13-pf-15 from the sector and ending with 31 factors, six rebounds and two assists in 35 minutes. Of the seven video games during which he’s made no less than 9 discipline objectives this season, Williamson has shot 54.5% or higher in 5 of them. The shortage of 3-point capturing has restricted his worth in 9-cat, because the second-year ahead sits exterior of the top-100, however that isn’t a significant problem given his excessive discipline purpose share and contributions as a scorer and rebounder.

Nickeil Alexander-Walker made one other begin rather than the injured Lonzo Ball, enjoying 33 minutes and ending with 9 factors, 5 rebounds, 5 assists, two steals and one 3-pointer. Alexander-Walker shot 3-of-8 from the sector and 2-of-5 from the foul line, however he’s value streaming for so long as Ball stays sidelined. The hope in New Orleans is that Ball shall be cleared to return inside the subsequent week, and with the Pelicans scheduled to play three video games it received’t be lengthy earlier than Alexander-Walker’s fantasy worth takes a significant hit. Over the past week he’s supplied sixth-round worth in each 8- and 9-cat.

Bagley has his finest recreation of the season in defeat: Marvin Bagley was within the headlines earlier this month attributable to his father’s demand that the Kings commerce him, and he appeared to wrestle a bit within the video games that adopted. Issues could also be turning round for the third-year ahead, nonetheless, as he has scored 20 factors or extra in every of the Kings’ final two video games. Bagley put up 26 factors, 10 rebounds, one help, one block and two 3-pointers, capturing a stable 11-of-19 from the sector. What helped issues from a enjoying time standpoint was the truth that the Kings have been with out Hassan Whiteside (left hip soreness).

His absence meant one much less one that may probably take minutes away from Bagley, and with Nemanja Bjelica as soon as once more a DNP-CD the Kings successfully rolled with a six-man rotation. Chimezie Metu performed 5 minutes off the bench, however essentially the most that he did was wind up on the mistaken finish of a vicious Williamson dunk. Bagley, whose left wrist has been a difficulty lately, performed a season-high 36 minutes and has performed 30 or extra in every of the Kings’ final two video games. Bagley’s a top-100 participant proper now, and even when Whiteside is accessible for Wednesday’s recreation in opposition to the Clippers, that shouldn’t affect his fantasy worth an excessive amount of. What works in opposition to MBIII, who’s rostered in 73% of Yahoo leagues, is the truth that the Kings will solely play three video games this week.

Morris, Kennard get away for Clippers: Los Angeles’ rotation for Sunday’s recreation in opposition to the Pacers underwent some alterations, as Patrick Beverley (private) was again whereas Lou Williams (hip) and Serge Ibaka (sickness) have been dominated out. Beverley’s return dropped Reggie Jackson again to the bench, whereas Ivica Zubac began for the injured Ibaka. Zubac (6/6/2/1/1) performed simply 16 minutes in Sunday’s win, and as a result of lack of enjoying time he doesn’t provide an important deal with regards to fantasy worth.

Two Clippers who may probably be worthwhile pickups are Marcus Morris and Luke Kennard, who scored 20 factors apiece within the blowout win. Morris (20/7/3/1 with 4 3-pointers) did his injury in 27 minutes, whereas Kennard (20/4/2 with 5 3-pointers) did his in 21. Each rank nicely exterior of the top-100 in 8- and 9-cat for the season as an entire, however during the last week they’ve been top-100 gamers. Sadly these two are among the many many whose fantasy worth will take successful for scheduling causes, because the Clippers received’t play once more till Wednesday.

The excellent news relating to Morris is that he seems to be getting nearer to peak recreation conditioning, after lacking the preseason and the Clippers’ first eight video games attributable to a knee damage.

“My legs are a lot stronger, I haven’t been coping with any issues with my knees,” Morris mentioned on Saturday, in keeping with the Los Angeles Occasions. “As soon as I get going, and as soon as I get the place I must be, man, it’s gonna be hassle.” Morris is at the moment rostered in 13% of Yahoo leagues, so he needs to be accessible as a streaming possibility on most nights.

McDermott shines in uncommon begin: With Myles Turner sidelined attributable to a sore hand, Doug McDermott was referred to as upon the fill the ensuing void within the beginning lineup. And he shot the ball nicely, ending with 23 factors (9-of-12 FGs), one rebound, two assists and 5 3-pointers. The problems for McDermott with regards to potential fantasy worth for this week’s video games are twofold. Indiana performs three video games this week, with the primary scheduled for Wednesday in opposition to the Mavericks. And Turner’s damage isn’t considered critical, so he needs to be again within the beginning lineup very quickly.

There’s little motive for McDermott to be rostered in commonplace leagues. He’s a deep league possibility with streamer enchantment on nights during which both Turner or Domantas Sabonis is just not cleared to play. And Goga Bitadze made his season debut, enjoying 16 minutes off the bench and accounting for 5 factors, two rebounds, two steals and one blocked shot. He isn’t value selecting up, because the aforementioned Turner is anticipated to return quickly.

Some Notable Stat Strains

Luka Doncic: 36 factors (13-of-30 FGs, 4-of-6 FTs), 16 rebounds, 15 assists, two steals and 6 3-pointers in 38 minutes vs. Chicago.

De’Aaron Fox: 43 factors (career-high; 17-of-27 FGs, 6-of-8 FTs), 4 rebounds, 13 assists, 4 steals and three 3-pointers in 39 minutes.

Julius Randle: 20 factors (7-of-14 FGs, 4-of-5 FTs), 12 rebounds, 4 assists, three steals and two 3-pointers in 31 minutes vs. Boston.

Domantas Sabonis: 19 factors (7-of-14 FGs, 5-of-8 FTs), 14 rebounds, six assists and two steals in 34 minutes vs. the Clippers.

Paul George: 20 factors (7-of-11 FGs, 4-of-4 FTs), seven rebounds, 4 assists, one steal and two 3-pointers in 34 minutes vs. Indiana.



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