Hoops fans were treated to a pretty entertaining six-game slate on Tuesday night, and those who were able to stay awake into the wee hours of Wednesday morning (for us East coasters anyways), saw history made at Oracle Arena. The Golden State Warriors set a new benchmark for best record to start an NBA season by winning their sixteenth straight game to open the 2015-2016 campaign.
For all intents and purposes, the game between the Warriors and the visiting Lakers was over before it started. GSW entered the contest as 17-point favorites and it took them all of 10 and a half minutes to cover that number. The Dubs were up 34 after three quarters and LA had the look of a team that might as well have just stayed home – they walked in defeated. (Aside: Byron Scott needs to go. Awful, awful ball coach.)
Unfortunately the blowout factor was in full effect as none of the Warriors starters were needed in the fourth quarter, evidenced by Stephen Curry and Draymond Green playing a game-high 30 minutes each. However, in honor of this Golden State team destroying the league so far this season, here are the lines for each of their starters tonight:
- Chef Curry – 24/4/9/2/0, four triples, zero TOs
- Klay Thompson – 11/3/2/0/1, two triples, one TO
- Harrison Barnes – 8/2/1/0/0, two triples, one TO
- Draymond Green – 18/7/5/1/2, two triples, 7-11 FGs
- Andrew Bogut – 8/7/2/0/2, 4-7 FGs, zero TOs
Those are pretty pedestrian numbers (relative to each player’s typical contributions this year), but these are the types of lines that we’ll occasionally see with a team as dominant as the Warriors. For season-long owners you just have to move on to the next game and hope it’s a more competitive affair. And for DFS players, you know for the future to fade GSW players on nights when they’re huge favorites as the main guys won’t be needed for the full 48. At some point we’ll also have to keep an eye out for DNP-Rest days, though I can’t imagine that will happen until Golden State loses their first game. (For the record, the teams standing in the way of a 28-0 Warriors team hosting the Cleveland LeBrons on Christmas Day are: Phoenix twice, Sacramento, Utah twice, Charlotte, Toronto, Brooklyn, Indiana, and Milwaukee twice. Seriously – who of those teams is scaring you if you’re the Dubs?)
Let’s take a look at the non-Bay Area happenings on Tuesday night…
Paul George – PG13 started the game en fuego, hitting his first six shots, three of which were from beyond the arc. He kept cooking all game long and wound up dropping a 40-burger on the Wizards, including seven triples. His final line ended up 40/8/4/2/0 with great percentages (14-19 FGs, 5-6 FTs). At this point I’d be very surprised if George finishes the year outside the fantasy top-10.
C.J. Miles – Not unlike his Indy running mate, Miles brought a flame thrower to the game against the Wiz. He hit eight of his nine 3-pointers, 10-16 overall from the field, and all four FTs in one of the finer shooting performances you’ll see all year. His final slash went 32/3/3/1/0 and a game-high +27 net rating as the Pacers rolled in D.C.
Gary Neal – 23 points and five triples in 29 minutes off the bench. Neal has flashed this kind of potential each of the last couple seasons, but it always ends up being unsustainable. Leave him on the wire.
Avery Bradley – Almost single-handedly kept Boston in the game against the Hawks. He was as hot as the Pacers’ wings for much of the night and finished with 25/1/2/3/1, including four triples. He’s the quintessential “three-and-D” player, but absolutely needs to be owned while his shot is falling. And right now his stroke looks pure, he’s shooting with a ton of confidence, and the fact that the rotation is thinned even slightly (i.e. Marcus Smart‘s two+ week absence) is a boon to his value.
Paul Millsap – The Sapper beasted yet again, putting a 25/9/3/1/1 line on the board with awesome percentages (10-14 FGs, 5-5 FTs). Stud.
Thabo Sefolosha – Sweet all-around game for Thabo, who is clearly enjoying life with Kent Bazemore in street clothes. 15/7/3/3/3 on 7-8 shooting. He didn’t make (or attempt) any threes, but that’s really just picking nits – he was great in this one and should continue to be startable until Baze comes back to muck up the rotation.
Jeff Green – Looked great against the Mavs on Tuesday night in the absence of Zach Randolph. 19/7/3/0/2 with a long ball and stellar efficiency (8-14 FGs, 2-2 FTs). Green is going to be roster-worthy until the Memphis frontcourt gets healthier, and he’ll give you the occasional beauty of a line like he did on Tuesday.
Danilo Gallinari – With no Kenneth Faried for the Nuggets, there were a lot more rebounds to go around for everyone else. Gallo seized that opportunity and pulled down a career-high 18 boards. It wasn’t a very Gallinari-esque line though as he shot just 2-10 from the field, missed on all five 3-point attempts, and posted no defensive stats. His 16-17 from the free throw line really gives you a leg up in that category early in the week, so this was a net positive line for fantasy owners.
Los Angeles Clippers Starters – The fantasy production was spread out fairly evenly amongst the Clips’ starting five. Chris Paul went for 15 points, 10 assists, and three steals. J.J. Redick connected on 6-10 from the field – including both three pointers he attempted – to finish with 16 points. Wesley Johnson knocked down three of his four tries from beyond the arc and blocked a shot. Blake Griffin went 18/10/4/1/1 with a triple, but shot only 7-20 from the field. And lastly, DeAndre Jordan did exactly what you’d expect – 18 & 11 with four blocks, but killed your FT% with a 12-26 mark from the line on Tuesday. Only Blake saw over 30 minutes of run among this group as the Clippers led fairly comfortably throughout the game and it’s often tough for guys to play extended minutes at the mile high altitude.
Kris Humphries – He started and played all of nine minutes. He had a rebound and a turnover. Pretty special stuff. If he’s not floating face down in the free agent pool already, he will be after Tuesday night.
Isaiah Thomas – It’s tough to put a guy who hit a pair of threes and swiped the ball three times in the “The Bad” category, but IT2/3 hit just 3-11 FGs, had no rebounds, and turned the ball over five times while giving out only two helpers. He’ll be better than this most nights.
Jared Sullinger – 7/5/2/0/0, no D, no 3. 21 lousy minutes for Sully on Tuesday.
Jae Crowder – No swipes for the second consecutive game after averaging nearly three per game in his first dozen contests. A 6/3/2/0/0 slash on 3-11 shooting is going to have his owners wanting to forget this box score pretty quickly.
Chandler Parsons – Assuming my eyeballs aren’t playing tricks on me, it looks like Parsons is still a long ways away from his pre-injury form. 6/5/2/0/1 on 3-9 shooting in 25 minutes. He missed all four attempts from deep and he just doesn’t have it right now (by any reasonable measure of what “it” is).
Will Barton – 20 minutes of pure garbage. 0-6 FGs, missed one of two FTs, and had as many combined assists, steals and blocks as I did.
The Lakers (…but mostly Jordan Clarkson & Kobe Bryant) – The anti-Paul George/C.J. Miles combo of the night, Clarkson & Bryant shot a combined 3-35. Seriously. Three for thirty-five. I haven’t seen a duo miss the mark that consistently since JB & Slim decided to record podcasts in the morning. [editor’s note – hey now!!!!!!!!!!]
Zach Randolph – ZBo was questionable, then he was active but maybe/maybe not starting, then he definitely wasn’t playing, but maybe he still was going to dress as emergency depth…Anyways, Randolph didn’t play and Matt Barnes got the start in his place. It sounds like Zach was really close to playing so I’d have to guess Memphis will run him out there against Houston on Wednesday night.
John Wall – Had himself a nice shooting night with 5-9 from the floor (3-4 from deep) and a perfect 5-5 from the charity stripe. Things weren’t so great beyond that as he had no defensive stats and turned the ball over eight times, which goes a long way in explaining why he posted a game worst -24 net rating. That stretch of games where Wall was blocking everything in his vicinity is looking increasingly fluky as he only has one swat in his last five games (149 minutes). And with the defensive numbers dwindling, he’s going to have a hard time cracking the top-5 point guard ranks in 9-cat leagues. Sounds a bit funny, right? Well, as of now, would you turn down a one-for-one offer involving any of: Steph Curry, Russell Westbrook, Kyle Lowry, Eric Bledsoe, or Damian Lillard? I wouldn’t.
BOS/ATL Rotations – All 26 players who dressed for this game saw playing time, none running any more than Kyle Korver‘s 33. R.J. Hunter was the most impressive of the unlikely contributors, pouring in 12 points with a pair of threes and steals in 21 minutes.
Mario Chalmers – Thief! Swiped the ball five times from the Mavs. The rest of the line was fairly “meh” but Rio is looking far better in a Grizzlies uniform and would be must-own if Mike Conley were to miss time.
Wesley Matthews – He looks better than Parsons, though Chandler hasn’t set a particularly high bar. The minutes are creeping up there (he played 33 on Tuesday) and he’s posting usable numbers – he was 11/4/4/0/0 with three triples against the Griz. It’s still going to be a month (or more) until he’s back to peak Matthews, but I wouldn’t mind him occupying a spot on my roster moving forward.
The Bulls/Blazers Game – There really weren’t any remarkable takeaways from this one. Jimmy Butler had the best line of the game with 22/2/4/4/0 (6-13 FGs, 8-8 FTs, two threes), but that’s pretty routine for the man they call “Buckets.” Nikola Mirotic re-discovered his shooting stroke and made 4-8 from the field, with three of the four hits coming from downtown. Pau Gasol double-doubled with 14 & 12 but shot poorly (5-15) and did very little else in the box. For the Blazers, Damian Lillard was on trip-dub watch, ending the night with 19/10/8. The only problem was he couldn’t hit the broad side of a barn, shooting 4-22 from the field and missing all six long balls. Mason Plumlee and Ed Davis each played 35 minutes and combined for 30 rebounds. Davis also added 12 points, three steals and two blocks for a fantasy-friendly line. Overall though, most of the main guys involved in this one played about as you’d expect with positive contributions in the usual categories and deficiencies exactly where you’d expect them.
OPPORTUNITY IS EVERYTHING
Players who saw over 36 minutes of floor time on Tuesday:
That does it for Tuesday’s wrap-up. I’d like to take this opportunity to wish all my American friends a very Happy Thanksgiving on Thursday. Enjoy your turkey, your football, and – most importantly – your time with family & friends. As always, if you want to chat waiver pickups, DFS plays, or anything else fantasy hoops, drop me a line on Twitter @moneyballmatty. Cheers.