After celebrating Ohio State’s National Championship on Monday, LeBron James returned to the Cleveland Cavaliers lineup on Tuesday. He picked up right where he left off, scoring 33 points, grabbing 7 rebounds, and dishing out 5 assists following a two-week break due to knee and back issues. The Cavaliers still lost the game, but fantasy owners won’t care about the Cavs’ record as long as James continues to put up lines like that.

James looked healthy and explosive, especially on these dunks. He wasn’t on a minutes restriction, as he saw 37 minutes of court time. James’ return pushes Mike Miller back to the bench, but he wasn’t providing much in starter’s minutes anyways.

While Miller moved back to the bench, J.R. Smith put up 29 points in his third start for the Cavs, after scoring 4 and 27 points in his two previous starts. It’s clear that Smith can still score in bunches on any given night, but expect the inconsistency to continue, as he is the fourth option on offense. There are just not enough shots to go around when you’re starting alongside Kevin Love, Kyrie Irving, and LeBron James.

Now that J.R. Smith is teammates with Shawn Marion, perhaps Smith will stop trying to untie Marion’s shoes.

Speaking of knuckleheads, Lance Stephenson made his return to the Charlotte Hornets lineup on Wednesday night. After sitting out a total of 14 games over the last couple weeks, Stephenson put up 8 points and 2 assists on 3-8 shooting in his return. As expected, Stephenson was on a minutes restriction, playing 18 minutes off the bench.

Now that Stephenson is back, it’s unclear what his role will be. Since he missed so many games, he’ll likely be on a minutes restriction for at least the next couple games. Then we should have a better idea whether Stephenson will be inserted back into the starting lineup or continue coming off the bench.

Kemba Walker, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, and Gerald Henderson have stepped up for the Hornets and have the wins to show for it. They won five games in a row prior to Wednesday’s loss to the Spurs. Given how poorly Stephenson started off the year and the Hornets’ recent success, it will be interesting to see how coach Steve Clifford divvies out the minutes. This is a situation to watch, as it could affect Henderson, MKG, and Stephenson’s fantasy values.

To spread the NBA’s global brand, the New York Knicks and Milwaukee Bucks traveled to London to play against each other on Thursday. No one expected the Knicks to be this bad this season, but perhaps the NBA should have scheduled two of the more premiere teams to play in London. At this point, I’d rather watch the 76ers.

The Knicks rewarded English fans by losing by 16 points to the Bucks for their 16th straight lost. Carmelo Anthony and Amar’e Stoudemire returned from injuries, but it wasn’t enough to halt the Knicks’ franchise longest losing streak.

Anthony played 28 minutes, scoring 25 points on 7-12 shooting, but also committed 8 turnovers. After the game Anthony said that the two weeks off really helped and that he doesn’t expect to miss much more time in the near future. Even with that claim, owners should try and trade Anthony as soon as he strings together a few good games.

Amar’e Stoudemire also started in his return, but played only 8 minutes. According to coach Derek Fisher, Stoudemire sat in the second half because the game was out of hand, rather than due to a setback.

The Knicks don’t play again until Monday, due to the travel, so it will be interesting to see how much Stoudemire plays next week. He’s been in and out of the lineup due to injuries all season and even when he’s played, he isn’t the fantasy monster he used to be. Owners should wait and see, before thinking about picking Stoudemire off of waivers or inserting him into their lineups.

For the Bucks, Ersan Ilyasova returned from a concussion and broken nose. He played limited minutes and didn’t shoot well (0-6 FG), but could be in line for major minutes down the line, as his main competition for minutes is 37-year-old Kenyon Martin.

Joakim Noah has been off to a relatively poor start to the season, averaging just 7.8 ppg and 9.6 rpg, since the Bulls brought in Pau Gasol. Noah had arthroscopic surgery on his left knee last May and just hasn’t returned to his dominant self from last season.

On Wednesday night, Noah exited the game at the end of the first half with an ankle sprain. He didn’t return to the game and the Bulls lost to the Wizards, after blowing an 11 point first half lead.

This isn’t the first time Noah has suffered an injury to his right ankle. He missed four games earlier in the season, after spraining his ankle in two consecutive games. He’s set for more tests to determine the severity of the injury. As a result, owners will have to consider him as day-to-day until more is known. The Bulls play next on Friday night.

Once Noah went down, Taj Gibson took his place in the lineup and finished with 12 points, 6 rebounds, and 2 blocks. Gibson has had his own problems with ankle injuries this season, but is in line to start, should Noah miss any games. Gibson is a great shot blocker and rebounder and becomes a solid waiver wire add.

After exiting Tuesday’s game early against Dallas, Rudy Gay underwent an MRI on his knee. Doctors diagnosed him with a knee sprain and he’s doubtful to play Friday. The Kings also play on Saturday so Gay may be out for the weekend. Check the injury reports closer to game time, but Derrick Williams will be in line for more minutes, should Gay sit.

Tobias Harris will miss his 4th game in a row, after being ruled out for Friday’s game. Harris is day-to-day, but considering that he was ruled out for Friday’s game so early in the week, the injury may be worse than initially thought. While Harris is sitting, rookie Devyn Marble will start in Harris’ absence, but fantasy owners can do much better.

Dwayne Wade did not play in Wednesday’s game against the Warriors due to a hamstring injury. Fortunately for owners, Wade said that the injury wasn’t serious and is day-to-day. Danny Granger, Mario Chalmers, and Norris Cole will all get a bump in minutes and usage, should Wade miss more time.

  1. DANTEGREEN says:
    (link)

    I’m looking to move Dirk for Hayward, is that good? Thanks peter!

    • Peter Kap

      Peter Kap says:
      (link)

      @DANTEGREEN: That’s a pretty fair trade. I’d prefer to have Hayward, even though the numbers are pretty similar. Dirk might be rested more down the stretch for the playoffs.

      • DANTEGREEN says:
        (link)

        @Peter Kap: Yea that’s what’s got me worried, him sitting out games(Which just happened the other day). Hope he plays big tonight tho, so it won’t be too hard to move him.. Thanks brotha appreciate it, keep postin! Looking forward to it

  2. Schoolboy P says:
    (link)

    Should I trade Deng for Gordon Heyward?

    • Peter Kap

      Peter Kap says:
      (link)

      @Schoolboy P: If you can pull that trade off, then yes. But I don’t think many owners would be willing to give up Hayward for only Deng. I know I wouldn’t.

  3. Tyler Durden says:
    (link)

    Hey Pete, what do you think about the ff trades:
    Playoffs are week 21-23 so im trying to unload Horford and Holiday since they both go 4-3-3.

    A. Horford for Duncan
    B. Horford/Holiday/Brolo for MGasol/Kemba
    C. Horford/Holiday/Brolo for Bosh/Duncan/RJax
    D. Horford/Holiday/Brolo for Ibaka/DannyGreen/Nurkic

    Thanks Kap!

    • Peter Kap

      Peter Kap says:
      (link)

      @Tyler Durden: I wouldn’t worry about playoff schedules yet. We’re not even halfway through the season. You have to get to the playoffs first before you worry about the playoffs.

      A. That’s a fine trade, but I’d be just as concerned with Duncan missing time down the stretch.
      B. I’d prefer to have Gasol/Walker, but owner may not think your side is enough.
      C. Don’t think that this trade is an upgrade for you. Rather have your current players.
      D. Fine trade, but owner might not think your side is enough.

  4. AlphaDavis says:
    (link)

    If you had to choose one rookie PG the rest of the way considering their schedules and all the coaching variables would you prefer to have have Smart of Payton ?? Paytons latest uptick seems to have a lot to do with Fournier and Tobias being out while you have Smart trying to work his way into the starting job.

    • Peter Kap

      Peter Kap says:
      (link)

      @AlphaDavis: I would go with Payton. He’s getting more minutes and playing well in those minutes. Smart just hasn’t been filling the box score like Payton and is still behind Evan Turner and Avery Bradley on the depth chart. Unless Turner gets traded, I would don’t see that changing this season.

  5. Chris says:
    (link)

    Hello Peter,

    Thans for the updates.

    Looking to better my team.
    I got an offer for my Danny Green for Darren Collison and Jeremy Lin. What you think?
    If trade is done I would drop Tony Wroten.

    Would you pull the trigger?

    Thanks,
    Chris

    • Peter Kap

      Peter Kap says:
      (link)

      @Chris: I would not. I’d rather have Tony Wroten than Jeremy Lin. Darren Collison for Danny Green is pretty fair for both sides, but I wouldn’t include Lin on that deal, since you have to drop Wroten to make it work. Unless you’re getting a better second player than Wroten, I would just do the trade one-for-one.

  6. DK says:
    (link)

    Hey Peter!

    What do you think of stashing Terrence Jones? Reports saying he’s at his last stage of rehab. Doesn’t tell a lot… but I am most likely locked for playoffs sitting at rank 2. With Motiejunas playing well and Smoove decent from bench…. Jones seems bleak. But his ceiling is so good!

    • Bye Felicia says:
      (link)

      @DK: He’s an afterthought with Smith on the team now. Plus Motiejunus playing at a higher level than the beginning of the season. I rather have active players on my bench unless you can afford to stash…

      • Peter Kap

        Peter Kap says:
        (link)

        @Bye Felicia: I wouldn’t stash Terrence Jones anymore. He was such a good fantasy player because he didn’t have competition for minutes and was doing great things in those minutes. Now the rotation is crowded and there’s no guarantee that he gets to see the kind of minutes he was getting before. I would drop him and then monitor his performance when he does finally come back.

  7. Lawson says:
    (link)

    Hi! Could you help me with this doubt?

    How do you feel on Pek and T Jones returning from injury?? I have Pek and I am planning to take T Jones back, I drafted him, kept him for months and I couldnt cope with him doing good for another team of my league. I am in a 16 team league, 9 cat.

    • Peter Kap

      Peter Kap says:
      (link)

      @Lawson: In standard leagues, those guys can be on the waiver wire. But since your league is so deep, you pretty much have to keep them, since the waiver wire won’t have any guys with as much upside.

      For both guys, I would try and trade them right around when they come back or soon after they play a little. Pek sounds like he could be coming back any day now. I just don’t see him staying healthy in the long term. For Jones, the rotation is just so crowded, I don’t see Jones getting the same kind of minutes he was getting before. Both players have upside so perhaps you can hedge your bets with a trade. Otherwise, hold onto them and hope for the best.

  8. DANTEGREEN says:
    (link)

    Dirk+mcw for Klay? Or c

    • DANTEGREEN says:
      (link)

      @DANTEGREEN: *or can you name other players i could get for dirk+mcw? Not looking for a particular type of player, thanks pete

      • Peter Kap

        Peter Kap says:
        (link)

        @DANTEGREEN: Each owner will value players differently, but I think Klay Thompson is a good place to start. I think you can get a top 20/30 player for Dirk and MCW. So other guys you might be able to get: LaMarcus Aldridge, Kawhi Leonard, Jimmy Butler, Blake Griffin, Jeff Teague, or Kyle Lowry.

        • DANTEGREEN says:
          (link)

          @Peter Kap: dude pete thanks a lot, appreciate your advice!!

Comments are closed.