“Did you coach the Celtics to a win last night, B-Rad?!” “No… But I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night!”
Since returning from his bad ankle sprain, Marcus Smart has had quite the timeline. Returned last Wednesday and played five minutes, and Stevens said he didn’t look ready. And when you’re not ready, you get demoted to the D-League. And when you shoot 1-12 FG in that D-League game, you still get a promotion. I want to work for that company! Any time you get reprimanded, you just have to explain why you’re currently better than 1-12! Then DNP Friday, and 8 minutes of nada Sunday. So of course, everyone expected that he’d play 35 minutes and go 23/4/5/1/0 shooting 7-14 FG (4-8 3PTM, 5-5 FT) without a single TO last night. And everyone expected Rajon Rondo, off a triple-double, to be benched in favor of Smart down the stretch and for both the overtimes. Well, the Celtics did almost upset the Wiz at home! Key word… almost. And sure, Boston had a big 4th quarter with the subs to make it a game, but an L is an L! Rondo owners collectively throw things at their computers – no one is safe from a Stevens line-up bamboozle. Before you run out and grab Smart, consider that timeline this past week. And don’t forget before last night he was shooting sub-30% FG and 21.4% from deep with only 1.1 dimes a game. Given some of those were in low-minute spells, but it was still only 8 dimes in 114 minutes to 6 TO. So don’t pull a Stevens and feel like the smartest one in the room by dropping, well virtually anyone in a 12 or 14 teamer for him, unless you plan to stash. Rondo could still be moved, but I never bet on a trade. It’s like betting on a successful hostage trade in an action movie. They never work out! Here’s what else went down last night in fantasy basketball action:
Kelly Olynyk – Another benefactor of Stevens going with reserves. At halftime, Stevens was like “I’ve got reserves!” 19/11/3/4/1 hitting a trey and 6-6 FT. Erstwhile “starter” Tyler Zeller for 10/5/1/2/0. 41 minutes for Kelly, only 22 for Z. Along with that, +20 for Olynyk to -20 for Zeller in +/-. I don’t feel great about picking one or the other, but sliding back to Olynyk gun to my head. I mean, it’s a coin flip and a mess. New band name!
Evan Turner – Ello Poppet! Mrs. Turner for 18/6/8/2/1 in 39 2OT-fueled minutes shooting 8-13 and 2-2 treys. Including the shot of the night! Lemony Snicket’s Fortunate Series of Events there! As was this line as a whole. Nahhhhh.
John Wall – Moves into my top 5 of favorite NBA players after last night. Not only do the numbers do some big talkin’ (26/17/9/0/0 on 10-17 shooting), but his post-game and who he dedicated the game too… Just great to see.
Rasual Butler – Well, back to usual for Rasual! 7/3/0/1/2 with 2 TO and only one trey. Still, most minutes off the Wizards bench… I’m still holding on.
Kris Humphries – Nene had two low-minute games off the plantar fascitis issue, and was a late-scratch with a bum knee last night. Ruh roh! If Humphries isn’t owned in your 12er, be sure he is now! 17/9/0/2/1. Sure double-OT helped boost the minutes to 43, but he’s going to hold onto this starting role for a good long while.
Al Horford – There we go! 25/8/3/1/3, and while his value is still not too high for me, great to see an outburst. Still only 8 boards, and had 4 of those very, very early. Like first 3 minutes. Might actually be a good sell-high game, if there’s any “sell-highing” to be done.
Paul Millsap – Oh no! FT% sapping from the Sapper! 3-9 FT… but still got a rainbow for 7/8/2/2/2. Even when it’s off, it’s on!
David West – Ewwwwww. 8/4/3/0/0 with 2 TO in 24 laughable minutes. Into the West is about to need a mini-series sequel called Dropping Him Back to the Wire.
Solomon Hill – Steady as she blows! 5/7/6/2/0 in a team leading 33 minutes. Actually no one else got to 28. It’s low-ceiling, but usable!
Rodney Stuckey – Same as Hill, low ceiling, but high-baby momma talent! 15/4/3/1/0 hitting a trey. George Hill is still a few weeks away. Which means he’s not even giving us a Two Weeks Notice… Starring Sandra Bullock.
Mirza Teletovic – Whew, got attacked by a rabid dog this game! Suffered a hip pointer and needed four stitches to da face! The hip pointer could cost him time, which means…
Mason Plumlee – …for even as bad as he’s been, just HAS to play minutes now. Only 19 minutes for a terrible 9/3/1/0/0 line shooting 4-8 FG and 1-4 FT last night. Well, the FT won’t change, but maybe the kick in the pants that he just HAS to play minutes will kickstart something. Let’s start a kickstarter campaign for Plumlee to play better!
Jerome Jordan – Also in the mix, and put up a near-rainbow of 12/3/2/1/1 shooting 6-8 FG in 26 minutes. Man, the Nets depth up front is like the frontcourt of the high school team from that village from Willow. Not in size, but in depth! I mean, why wouldn’t those Willow warriors keep going with him… Pansies. I almost chose my own finger!
Dion Waiters – Points explosion! 26/1/4/2/1 with no TO shooting 11-21. It’s like being a high school player hopped up on Red Bull playing a YMCA pickup game on senior Sunday. “You’re not over 60!”
Tristan Thompson – The conundrum! Back-to-back dubdubs, plus a near rainbow last night of 14/12/1/2/2. 29 minutes of playing against that Willow backcourt. I think even I could’ve gotten close to a dubdub in that game, I’ve got some height!
Darrell Arthur – I hate him in real life for that cheap shot earlier in the year, and I don’t like him much more in fantasy. But I like him over Thompson! 12/13/2/1/1 and even though he’s 0-10 from deep the past 4, will chip in some threes here and there.
Arron Afflalo – Double the R and double the F, and whatdaya get?! Truffler! Ummm, remuffler? 25/6/3/0/0 hitting four treys shooting a mad-efficient 9-14 FG. Refluffer! All those sound like inappropriate words…
Lou Williams – Sweet Lou! 26/3/1/0/1 with three treys and that high, high volume FT%. 9-10 last night, and now 51-55 from the line the past 9 games, including a 0-0 FT in there.
Patrick Patterson – Look at those sweet, sweet minutes! Such sweetness in TOR! 19/8/2/0/1 shooting 7-11 FG and 5-7 3PTM. All in 39 monster minutes, helped out by a little OT time.
Greivis Vasquez – Rainbow alert! The Twerp for 9/5/2/2/2. The dimes I think are a little overrated – finally went down a little bit this game – but he’s certainly usable in all leagues while starting.
Jonas Valanciunas – His luminescence is creeping into my dark place! [whoa, note to self, reword that] 18/12 with 4 swats, and first dubdub in 3 weeks. I care about this big game about as much as Taken 3, which I just saw a trailer for while writing. Seriously? How many things can get Taken?!
#OccupyDraymondGreen – Sheesh, it just doesn’t stop erupting! 10/10/3/3/2 in another rainbow, even though his shot was off for 3-10 FG with no 3PTM. So hard to complain about anything, just #Occupy and #Dominate!
Andrew Bogut – Ohhhhhhh no. Came out before 3 minutes of play with knee soreness. Collective Razzball Nation sigh… I’d be surprised if he plays the next game or two, even though it’s not considered serious at this point.
David Lee – Should be back as soon as tomorrow for Golden State’s next game. Beer-battered GS big men! Tough to tell at 18-2! If he’s Lee’s still out, it might be a monster Wednesday for the ace of Speights! If you have a pretty open streaming spot, Marreese Speights should be a solid stream in that one.
Zach LaVine – His %s are internecine! 9/4/8/3/0 is solid and all, but 4-16 FG and 6 TO. Tough matchup against Stephen Curry though… Flip should see no reason to rush Mo Williams back into action whenever his back heals up, so ride LaVine as he takes your %s down the latrine!
Corey Brewer – Another big game of thievery. 5 steals and should be owned in most leagues these days. Gotta rack up the petty larceny!
Nik Stauskas – What in the?!?!?! 30 minutes out of absolutely nowhere, going 15/8/1/1/0. Hit a couple treys, and kept Ben McLemore down to 18 minutes as the two allocated all the 48 SG minutes. Makes me not want to trust McLemore any more! I’d give him a tad more leash in deeper leagues, but yikes. Weird shake-up Monday!
Jason Thompson – 10/9/3/0/0 in very “meh” play, with Reggie Evans going for 6/13/1/1/0. DeMarcus Cousins is now rumored to be out until 2015… All we want for Christmas is Boogie back! Thompson and Evans should be usable in deep leagues for a good while.
Alec Burks – 30 and a half minutes, looking solid off the shoulder injury. 16/4/3/2/0 on 5-11 FG, and playing aggressive with 6-9 FT. I was scared while it lingered and with all the surgery talk, but feel free to grab him again!
Blake Griffin – Whoa, maybe he should beat up dudes in nightclubs more often! After another round of details came out from that mess in Vegas in the preseason, BG goes for 45/8/2/1/0 shooting 14-24 FG (2-2 3PTM, 15-17 FT) last night in another OT game. No one wanted to win in regulation last night! Meh, good scorers have good games. Just when you go out to have a beer with him, don’t call him fat in those jeans!
Eric Bledsoe – Line of the night! Saving the best for last. 27/11/16/2/2 in a rainbow shooting 8-16 FG (2-6 3PTM, 9-9 FT). Suns performance of the year! Andddddd, still in an L. Former team motivation! Between Blake needing to slap more people and Bledsoe owning his former teams, we really need more NBA motivational coaches!
Streamers/Cheap DraftKings Picks:
Chris Kaman (18% owned) – Even though Andre Drummond is beastly, and Josh Smith can rack up defensive stats, the Pistons interior D is inconsistent at best, and I have a feeling POR runs away with this one. Well, so would Vegas oddmakers, who have the spread at +49.
Gal Mekel (0% owned) – Super deep league alert! 10 dimes through his first two games and the clear-cut backup PG for the Pels, who should rockem sockem robots the Knicks at home tonight. Garbage time! Another 5-6 assists for deep leaguers needing a boost there can find him literally everywhere. Turn to the left. Now to the right. One of the direction you looked – there’s Gal Mekel!
I hope everyone had a solid start yesterday, and good luck in your matchups on a busy Tuesday!