If you’re reading this, congratulations. You’re probably in your fantasy basketball championship week. If you’re not, you have a sick addiction to NBA basketball and still care how your friends’ weeks are going, or you’re a a masochist and want to see how you could have done if you made the finals. It has been a crazy couple of weeks in the NBA, with injuries, teams resting key guys, and extreme tanking. I would move your league’s final week up at least one week if I was you, because your team at this point in the year probably doesn’t resemble what it was even three short weeks ago. I think if you’re wise you will draft guys on mid to upper tier teams next year, who actually will be playing for something down the stretch. One of these guys is Paul Millsap. The Nuggets are battling for a playoff spot and Millsap got all the run he could handle going 2-36-9-2-0-0-1 on 13-of-18 shooting and 8-of-11 FTs. He could be on a lot of winning squads with four games this week. With that said, there have been some key steamers and beneficiaries of rested players and late season injuries. Here is what went down on a key Friday night for Fantasy Basketball:
Nikola Jokic– 1-23-16-6-1-2-4 on 11-of-22 shooting. So versatile! Bonafide first-rounder, and he’s had an even better finals week than Millsap.
Carmelo Antony– 5-23-9-0-1-1-0 on 9-of-21 shooting. After a pretty brutal couple of weeks, he finally had a strong outing. Hard to trust for next year, and he’ll probably go on a Twitter rant when he gets ranked outside the top 75 by Slam Magazine.
Paul George– 1-13-6-4-3-0-2 on 4-of-12 shooting and 4-of-7 from the stripe. This game went into overtime too…
Russell Westbrook- 4-33-9-13-2-1-2 on 12-of-32 shooting and 5-of-8 FTs. In God we Russ! Horrible percentages though. Good luck with that!
Sean Kilpatrick– 2-13-4-2-0-0-2 on 2-of-11 shooting with 7-of-8 FTs. Got 26 minutes off the bench and made the most of them. Who knows how long he’ll last on the Bulls, but I was very surprised when he couldn’t find a role on the Nets. I liked what he did last year as a scorer off the bench and maybe he can rekindle that magic in Chicago or elsewhere next season. As for this year, he could be a stream in a deep league.
Christiano Felicio– 8-16-1-0-0-3 on 50% shooting. He got 27 minutes and it appears his injury was minor. The Bulls are in full tank-mode, and Felicio is getting serious minutes. They’re probably just testing him out, but he’s shown he can board and score a little.
Nikola Vucevic– 12-14-3-1-2-1 on just 5-of-16 shooting, but made both free throws.
Aaron Gordon– 1-18-7-1-1-1-1 on 6-of-21 shooting with 5-of-6 from the line. He’s kind of like Blake Griffin with better D-stats and worse scoring. To me, neither are very conducive to winning fantasy championships, but if Gordon could improve his FTs, he could be very valuable next year.
Ben Simmons– Trip Dub Alert! His 11th of the season. 13-12-11-1-2-2 on 6-of-11 shooting, but 1-of-3 FTs. The Sixers have a chance at being the 3rd seed in the East. The Process is finally paying off! Was it worth it?
Ersan Ilyasova– 2-21-16-2-1-1-2 on 8-of-16 shooting and 3-of-4 from the line. Ersan of Interest! Congrats if you streamed him.
Markelle Fultz– 10-1-0-2-0-0 in 19 bench minutes. Could be a sleeper next year, with big risk/reward.
Damion Lee– 2-20-4-1-2-0-0 on 8-of-17 shooting and 2-of-4 free throws. Anyone can get it this year. Hopefully you did your research and plugged this guy into your algorithms, because if you streamed him, you deserve the championship.
Mike Muscala– 1-5-3-0-0-0-0 in 28 minutes. He looked good the last three, but we should have known he would turn back into a pumpkin…
Anthony Davis– Came up kinda small on a big night for fantasy. 16-8-3-1-2-1 on 6-of-19 shooting with 4-of-4 FTs. Yahoo! has him ranked as the number one fantasy player this year in 9-cat leagues, so this is a bit of a letdown if it’s your last week.
Jrue Holiday– He’s been coming up big all year, in probably his best year as a pro statistically. Last night he went 1-25-6-2-2-0-6 on 12-of-18 shooting. He’s got to be the best volume FG% PG this year and that shows Jrue Grit.
Nikola Mirotic– 4-20-7-3-0-0-0 on 8-of-13 shooting. Cleveland did a good job of not fouling. New Orleans only shot six free throws on the night.
Jordan Clarkson– 4-23-4-2-0-0-3 on 9-of-13 shooting. Went cold for two games, but if you need points, Clarkson’s always good in “A Moment Like This”.
Marquese Chriss– 12-11-2-1-3-3 on 6-of-11 shooting and managed to avoid the FT line. The Passion of the Criss (because Easter) scored in double-digits in his last seven and is closing out the year strong. Still, his percentages leave a lot to be desired.
Tyler Ulis– 3-16-6-12-1-0-5 on 33% shooting and 3-of-4 from the line. The ratios are ugly, but he’s been a nice stream for PG stats in the last few games, similarly to last year.
Troy Daniels– 7-23-4-0-0-0-0 Ultimate THRAGNOF!
James Harden– 1-28-8-10-2-1-4 on 8-of-21 shooting and 11-of-17 FTs. As good as this line looks, it’s kind of disappointing given it was against the Suns and the percentages were whack. Hopefully, you didn’t need the FT%…
Gerald Green– 15 points with four threes and nothing else. I could see streaming him tonight with Gordon out. I really like him as a 3-point specialist, but he needs consistent minutes next year, if he’s gonna be worth drafting.
Karl-Anthony Towns– 1-21-20-1-1-1-0 on8-of-21 shooting and 4-for-4 from the line. With his 56 point game this week. If you have him on your team and made the finals, congrats, you probably won.
Jamal Crawford– 2-24-3-2-2-0-1 on 11-of-18 shooting. Scored in double-figures in the last seven, but he’s mostly just a points streamer.
Yogi Ferrell– 2-14-4-3-2-0-0 on 6-of-16 shooting. He’s been better than your average streamer for the better part of three weeks. If you held him, he’s probably been better than that star on your team who has been held out with a minor injury.
Marc Gasol– 6-28-3-2-1-0-3 on 11-of-12 shooting. Who is he, Brook Lopez? His FG% has steadily dropped throughout his career, but he’s added the 3-point shot to his game and become a much better passer. He needs a change of scenery…
MarShon Brooks– 1-24-1-2-2-0-1 on 8-of-13 shooting and 7-of-7 FTs in only 18 minutes off the bench. Could be a sneaky add if you have an open spot. Not sure what the Grizzlies will do with him in the offseason, but he’s played great the last two games.
Derrick Favors– 10-6-2-0-4-1 on 5-of-8 shooting, but missed all four free throws. He’s been a top-100 value all year, and I would draft him late next year.
Royce O’Neale– 1-13-6-4-3-0-1 on 5-of-7 shooting and made both free throws. Started in place of Ricky Rubio and got 36 minutes. He’s pretty low end, even as a starter.
Joe Ingles– 3-17-5-10-0-1-4 on 7-of-15 shooting. Jingles jangled his Dimebag! That sounded better in my head… Had to distribute more with Rubio out. He’s a great glue guy on a fantasy team.
Dante Exum– 3-21-3-3-1-0-1 on 7-of-15 shooting and made both free throws, as he hit’s the reset button on his career. I could see him being a late-round flier next year, but it depends what they do with Rubio.
Kris Middleton– 2-28-4-5-4-1-4 on 10-of-19 shooting and 6-of-7 from the line. This guy could be a legit 3rd rounder next year. He never gets any shine though.
Eric Bledsoe– 7-39-3-6-4-0-0 on 15-of-24 shooting and made both his free throws. This game went into overtime so the stats got padded a bit, but a really nice line from E. Bled. I don’t want to jinx it, but he’s stayed relatively healthy all year and produced third round value.
Kyle Kuzma– 2-27-12-6-2-0-3 on 11-of-20 shooting and 3-for-3 FTs. Kuzma Daddy! Had a phenomenal rookie year and I could see him going in the mid-to-late rounds next year.
Josh Hart– 1-13-13-0-0-1-1 on 50% shooting and made both free throws. He made it back from hand surgery before the end of the year, which is kind of surprising, and he picked up right where he left off with a double-double from the guard spot. He could be interesting next year depending on what the Lakers do. Just keep him in mind.
Brook Lopez– 1-20-2-3-0-1-0 on 9-of-14 shooting. Had a strong finish to the season, but I have no idea where he’ll be drafted next year.
Boban Marjanovic– 10-9-0-1-0-0 in just 12 minutes. He’s got to be one of the best per-36 guys that has no chance of ever playing 36 minutes.
Jusuf Nurkic– 21-12-3-2-4-2 on 9-of-17 shooting and 3-for-3 from the line. He’s a great guy to have if you have no other bad FT shooters on your team or are just punting that category.
Damian Lillard– 2-17-7-11-0-0-2 on 5-of-16 shooting and 5-of-6 FTs. They say you change after having your first kid, so maybe Lillard will be more of a distributor? My guess is he’ll be back to scoring 26 a game sooner rather than later.
I hope you all had a great weekend and your fantasy teams/streamers crushed it for you in the Finals. If your championship round extends over the last two weeks, I’ll be back for one more Friday recap. As always, feel free to ask a question in the comments section.