Lob City was alive in well in Houston on Wednesday. Chris Paul was throwing DeAndre Jordan alley-oops left and right. By halftime, Paul already had 11 assists. He finished the blowout with 15 points and 16 assists, while Jordan added 23 points and 16 rebounds. Jordan even shot over 50% from the FT line (7-13 FT, but not by much!). J.J. Redick also knocked down 5-9 from the 3PT line to finish with 25 points. It was all Clippers from the beginning and the Rockets just couldn’t find an answer.
James Harden did his usual thing, trying to carry the disappointing Rockets, but it wasn’t enough. He finished with 33 points, 8 assists, and 5 rebounds. Big men Dwight Howard (6 points, 7 rebounds) and Clint Capela (3 points, 3 rebounds) were rendered useless against Jordan. The only other bright spots for the Rockets were Trevor Ariza (16 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists, and 2 threes) and newly acquired forward, Michael Beasley, who scored 16 points and grabbed 8 rebounds off the bench. Coming over from China, Beasley makes a good waiver wire add for all teams.
The Rockets started the season with lofty expectations, but are currently tied with the Dallas Mavericks for the 7th playoff spot. If they finish 7th or 8th, they’ll end up playing the San Antonio Spurs or Golden State Warriors in the first round of playoffs, something that nobody wants to do.
The Warriors, by the way, won their 50th straight game at home on Wednesday, dismantling the New York Knicks by 36. Stephen Curry hit 8 threes and scored 34 points (6 rebounds and 4 assists), before sitting out the 4th quarter of the blowout.
I don’t think anyone saw the Warriors playing on an historic level or the Rockets playing this poorly at the beginning of the season, but that’s why you play the game!
Now onto the other nightly notables:
Draymond Green – You don’t often see double-doubles without the points: 6 points, 10 assists, and 11 rebounds. Maybe Curry or Klay Thompson (19 points and 7 rebounds) could have gotten Green a few more shots.
Carmelo Anthony – Melo led the way for the Knicks with 18 points, 6 assists, and 6 rebounds. He’s been on a roll lately and more importantly hasn’t sat out a game for his knee since before the All-Star break.
Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook – KD did his best Russell Westbrook impression with 28 points, 7 rebounds, and 9 assists. Meanwhile, Westbrook didn’t record a triple-double, but still finished with 24 points, 5 rebounds, 5 assists, 3 steals and 4 threes. He may have been out-assisted by KD, but Westbrook knocked down more threes. Seems like they switched their usual box scores.
Enes Kanter – Off the bench, Kanter destroyed the glass with 17 points and 12 rebounds. 7 of those 12 rebounds were on the offensive end for leagues that differentiate rebounds.
Amir Johnson – Nice double-double for the big man with 11 points, 12 rebounds, and 5 assists. It was his first double-double since the middle of January so I wouldn’t rush to the waiver wire to pick him up.
Isaiah Thomas – Thomas shot the ball well, (11-19 FG, 3-4 3PT) for 29 points, but did little else: 2 rebounds and 1 assist. He should be back closer to his averages of 6+ assists in no time.
Tyler Zeller – Coming off the bench, Zeller chipped in 16 points, 3 rebounds, and 2 blocks. The game was a blow out and he still only saw 18 minutes. I would leave him on the wire.
Brandon Jennings – Starting for the injured Elfrid Payton (elbow), Jennings scored 16 points, dished out 4 assists, and grabbed 8 rebounds. He also knocked down 3-7 from downtown. As long as Payton sits, Jennings is a solid waiver wire addition for all teams.
Marvin Williams – Williams took an incredible 10 3PT attempts, knocking down 4 of them, en route to 26 points, 9 rebounds, 2 assists, and 1 steal/block each.
Cody Zeller – Zeller must have been feeling lucky with a 13/13 double-double. It was a nice bounce back game after scoring only 8 points in the previous two games.
Kemba Walker – Walker wasn’t his sharpest (6-16 FG), but still contributed 16 points, 8 rebounds, and 3 threes.
Nicolas Batum – Batum continued his strong play of late with 26 points, 9 assists, 7 rebounds, and 3 threes.
Victor Oladipo – 25 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists, and 3 blocks. That’s already 5 blocks for him this week, a huge out of position help for teams already in the playoffs.
Aaron Gordon – Gordon was limited to 13 minutes because Scott Skiles decided to sit him after 2 early fouls. Don’t worry, there’s no injury here. Hopefully he gets out of the doghouse for the next game. Andrew Nicholson (13/7/3) and Mario Hezonja (11/4/3) benefitted from Gordon’s benching.
John Wall – Wall nearly had a triple double at the end of the 3rd quarter, settling for his final rebound early in the 4th quarter. He finished with 29 points (11-19 FG), 10 rebounds, 12 assists, 3 steals, and 1 block. He was an incredible +38 for the game, as the Wizards beat the Bulls by 21.
Bradley Beal – Wall’s partner in crime started and posted 20 points, 7 rebounds, 2 assists, and 3 steals. It was only his second 20+ point game since the All-Star break. The Wizards will need to rely on Beal if they’re going to push the Bulls or Pistons out of the playoffs.
Garrett Temple – Temple caught fire off the bench, knocking down 5-6 from downtown. He finished with 15 points, 6 rebounds, and 4 assists, but he’s too inconsistent to be relied upon in fantasy.
Taj Gibson – Gibson was limited to only 7 minutes after hurting his hamstring. He’ll be re-evaluated on Thursday and his status for Thursday’s game is up in the air. The Bulls just can’t catch a break with the injuries.
Derrick Rose – Rose was a game time decision after missing the previous 2 games with a strained left groin. He contributed 16 points, 3 rebounds, 4 assists, and 2 steals for the Bulls. The DC metro was shut down on Wednesday due to safety concerns and a Wizards fan took the chance to make fun of Rose’s reliability.
Jimmy Butler – Butler couldn’t find his shooting touch (4-12), but salvaged his line with 9-11 from the free throw line to finish with 17 points, 6 rebounds, 3 assists, and 3 steals.
Doug McDermott – McBuckets knocked down 3 threes and scored 20 points off the bench in the blowout. Like most shooters, McDermott is streaky so perhaps he’s in another zone, after a couple poor games last week.
Paul Millsap, Kent Bazemore, and Al Horford – The Hawks had three starters get double-doubles. Millsap finished with 13 points, 10 rebounds, and 4 steals, Bazemore added 15 and 10, and Horford posted 21 points, 11 rebounds, and 4 assists. Despite all those rebounds, the Hawks were outrebounded by the Pistons by 2.
Jeff Teague – Teague was just one assist shy of joining his fellow starters in the double-double club. He finished with 22 points and 9 assists, knocking down 12-13 from the charity stripe.
Dennis Schroder – Schroder bounced back from a 0-point outing on Saturday with 18 points, 7 assists, and 2 steals off the bench.
Andre Drummond – The good news: AD went for 18 points and 18 rebounds. The bad news: he shot 8-17 from the free throw line. That really hurts teams relying on him in head-to-head playoffs.
Reggie Jackson – Jackson scored 17 points and dished out 10 assists. He now has double-doubles in 3 of the last 4 games.
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope – Pope led the Pistons in scoring, posting 24 points, 4 rebounds, 2 blocks, and 3 threes.
Kevin Love – Monster double-double for the big man with 23 points and 18 rebounds, who also benefitted from James’ absence.
J.R. Smith – It wasn’t pretty (6-17 FG, 1-8 3PT), but Smith did a little of everything with 13 points, 4 rebounds, 4 assists, and 3 steals.
Dirk Nowitzki – Dirk (20/4/3) wasn’t enough for the Mavericks as they fell to the Cavs by 1.
David Lee and J.J. Barea – Outside of Dirk, the Mavericks didn’t get much help from the starters, allowing Lee (20 points and 3 rebounds) and Barea (17/3/4) to contribute off the bench. With Zaza Pachulia (8 points and 4 rebounds in 13 minutes) fading as the season winds down, the Mavericks have begun to rely on Lee more and more.
Gorgui Dieng – Dieng continued his versatile stat lines with 15 points, 6 rebounds, 7 assists, and 3 blocks. Gotta love a big man who can dish out that many assists.
Karl-Anthony Towns – The Rookie of the Year added to his already impressive résumé with 18 points, 10 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 steals, and 1 block.
Ricky Rubio – With another double-double on Wednesday (15 points and 11 assists), Rubio has contributed 5 double-doubles in the last 6 games.
Zach LaVine – LaVine led the Timberwolves in scoring, posting 28 points, 3 rebounds, and 6 threes. That’s back-to-back 28-point games for the Slam Dunk champion.
Lance Stephenson – Decimated by injuries, the Grizzlies have asked Stephenson to immediately step up, after his trade from the Clippers. In 36 minutes off the bench, Stephenson added 24 points, 11 rebounds, and 7 assists. Every night won’t be this pretty, but he’s worth a look in all leagues.
JaMychal Green – Pushed into the starting lineup because of injuries to Marc Gasol and Zach Randolph, Green has played admirably. He posted 18 points, 10 rebounds, and 3 assists, giving him 4 double-doubles in his last 6 games.
Matt Barnes – A few nights after recording his first ever triple-double, Barnes filled up the stat sheet again with 14 points, 10 rebounds, 3 assists, and 3 blocks. The 6-21 shooting hurts, but Barnes will continue to get heavy minutes down the stretch for the Grizzlies.
Anthony Davis – Davis nearly recorded a double-double in the first quarter, before finishing with 27 points, 14 rebounds, and 2 blocks in the Pelicans’ blowout of the Kings.
Jrue Holiday – Starting for the injured Tyreke Evans and Norris Cole (lower back injury), Holiday did his usual thing with 17 points and 4 assists. Cole was a game-time decision, but it will be Toney Douglas (11/3/3) and the newly-signed Tim Frazier (14 points and 9 assists) who will see a drop in their production when Cole returns. Holiday is safe, whether he starts or comes off the bench.
Ryan Anderson – The stretch 4 swished 5-6 from downtown to go along with his 29 points, 5 rebounds, and 3 assists. The Kings couldn’t find an answer for Anderson, as 21 of his 29 points came in the second quarter.
DeMarcus Cousins – It’s a shame that Cousins is on such a terrible team, but fantasy owners can’t complain with lines like this: 20 points, 12 rebounds, 5 assists, 2 steals, and 2 blocks.
Darren Collison – Rajon Rondo sat for a turf toe, moving Collison into the starting lineup. Collison finished with 23 points, 4 assists, and 3-3 from downtown. Rondo has been battling the injury since the break, but hopefully returns to the court soon. Seth Curry scored 11 points and dished out 5 assists off the bench.
James Anderson – Inserted into the starting lineup, Anderson scored 17 points with 4 rebounds. Don’t bother with Anderson. Before Wednesday’s game, he only played a grand total of 9 minutes since March 3.