With 13 games happening last night, and me wanting to get this summary done before next
Wednesday lets simplify and look at 10 noteworthy and interesting stat lines. These
statlines don’t have to be necessarily good, but they just have to be interesting.

Joel Embiid
50 points, 15-17 free throws, 12 rebounds, three blocks

Embiid has entered the MVP conversation, and might be running away with it soon. Putting
up fifty last night, averaging 31, nine, and five through his last ten games and the 76ers are finally
winning games. Only two games back of the Brooklyn Nets, if they keep climbing the standings I
believe that Embiid has a true case for MVP. What also supports his case is the narrative that,
without defensive player of the year candidate Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid has carried his team to a
top three seed while Nikola Jokic couldn’t do the same.

Kyrie Irving
30 points, 23 field goals attempted

Congratulations to those die hard fans who drafted and stashed Irving, as you’ve most likely
won your fantasy league. Dropping thirty last night against the Wizards and averaging twenty
points through his last six games, you got a mid-round talent at minimum in most likely the last
round of the draft. Bold moves make champions, but sorry for those who drafted Simmons
expecting the same. Boldness can also be synchronous with unfortunate outcomes. Also worth
mentioning James Harden with eight turnovers that almost cost them the win.

Dennis Schroder
24 points, seven rebounds, five assists, 62.5% from three

After the Bol Bol, Pj Dozier trade, many people have talked about how close Boston is to
being under the luxury tax, and how Dennis Schroder’s contract could be dumped to achieve
that. I can’t understand why they would do that, especially when he’s an essential piece of
this team. He’s the difference between a playoff spot and four games of guaranteed
playoff revenue or the play-in and potentially only one game. If you need to dump cap space so
badly look to trade Josh Richardson, even retaining salary and trading him for a second would
be more beneficial then trading Schroder. On another note, why did they acquire
Bol Bol? Did they miss Tacko Fall that bad? He was waived a few weeks ago so you can acquire him!

Anfernee Simons

Last 10 games 23.8 points, 7.6 assists, 92% free throw percentage

One of the benefits of writing weekly is that I occasionally get a few predictions right, and boy was
I right on Simons a few weeks ago. I told you he would
absolutely dominate with more opportunities, and I called it. It wasn’t that difficult a call to make but hey, I’m hardly
correct so let me give myself credit when it’s due. The Trail Blazers are a very interesting team. Damian Lillard is sidelined for at least four more weeks so do they attempt to fight for the 10th seed and stay the course, or do they sell off assets to get under the luxury tax?

Lauri Markkanen
28 points, seven rebounds, 55% on nine attempts from three

What do Jalen Brunson, Gary Trent Jr., Lauri Markkanen, D’Angelo Russell, and most of the
Atlanta Hawks have in common? They’re all wildly inconsistent, but occasionally dominant. I
chose Markkanen to highlight last night because of his three-point percentage. When Lauri
goes off it’s usually because of said three-point percentage. He’s averaging around six attempts
per game, but only shooting 32%, a career-low. If you’re in need of a big performance and have
no other chance of winning he’s always worth a grab off of waivers. In any other situation I
wouldn’t recommend.

Donte DiVincenzo
0 points, five rebounds, 19 minutes

DiVincenzo hasn’t been able to find his place in the offense since returning or is still
nursing that injury. In his last five games he hasn’t scored over 10 points, shooting
only 27% from three. Grayson Allen may have taken his spot in his absence, for a guy who’s
rostered in 34% of leagues, I think it’s time to drop him and move on.

Luka Doncic
Season-high 41 points , 14 rebounds, 7 assists, 54% from the field

It’s like Rick Carlisle is back behind the bench. The heliocentric offense is back, baby! The
Mavericks could be scary in this year’s playoffs, with Kristaps Porzingis returning to form just at
the right time. Since last week’s rant the Mavericks have won four straight beating quality playoff
teams. Despite Jason Kidd’s defensive efforts, he’s not the right option to truly
utilize Luka’s amazing offensive talent. But it appears to be working so perhaps I’m wrong, time
will tell.

Fred VanVleet
18 points, 12 assists, 3-15 3pt or 20% 3pt

Ah yes, the duality of VanVleet, missing twelve three pointers, then walking up causally and
dropping a 40-foot bomb with a minute left in the game. The nerve of this All Star-quality guard
is truly spectacular. He finished the game with fifteen attempted threes, only hitting three of
them for a shooting percentage of 20%. I love VanVleet, but I can’t ignore shooting 20% on this
high volume.

Terence Davis
35 points, 53% from 3, 0 turnovers

The former Toronto Raptor balled out last night, dropping 35 in an unfortunate loss to the Detroit
Pistons. With the abundance of deeper fantasy leagues and Covid protocols, I enjoy
highlighting these random one-night pop-offs. So to anyone who had Terence Davis, cheers to
you, enjoy your win or less embarrassing loss this week.

Nikola Jokic
49 points, 14 rebounds, 10 assists, 60% from 3, three steals, 14-16 FT

We finally get to the performance of the night, asJokic carried the Denver Nuggets to a
close win over the Clippers in overtime. Oh, and he casually shot 60% from three and got to the line 16 times. Even though I believe that Joel Embiid will be the MVP this season, if I had a vote Jokic would get it.
It’s been a historically great season, he’s willing his team to playoff contention, and is dealing with injuries to his
2nd and 3rd best players. Jokic has been playing insane this season, and the only
legitimate counter argument to him winning MVP is that his team doesn’t win enough games.